Alison Taylor Cheeseman mined comic gold in the dual role of the goddess Diana and Jove disguised as Diana for the purpose of making love to Callisto. (I am not making this up.) The dignified goddess struggled girlishly with her vow of chastity when it came to the handsome poet Endymion. … When the singer added a touch of masculine swagger, all of a sudden there was the king of the gods plotting his latest conquest. Cheeseman delivered it all with firm voice and striking presence. — David Wright, New York Classical Review
Thanks to a grant from Opera America and the Howard Gilman Foundation, I’ll be spending a few days in September preparing materials for the audition season: new headshots and demo recordings, among other things. Check back in mid-September to see and hear the new me!
I spent this June/July as an apprentice artist with the Bel Canto Opera program at Caramoor. It was a tremendous learning experience, with lectures and master classes on various aspects of bel canto style and vocal technique. On the performing side of things, I was thrilled to be a part of the U.S. Premiere of Rossini’s Aureliano in Palmira. (Read more about it in the New York Times and Financial Times, among others!).
“Among a generally excellent company, another standout was Alison Cheeseman, singing the passionate phrases of the Composer in a cool, slightly reedy mezzo aptly suggesting the voice of a young man still in his teens.”
Rehearsals are well under way for WOW, an opera inspired by Milli Vanilli. We open with our first work-in-progress performance on January 23rd at BRIC House in Brooklyn. The show is intricate and strange, tragic and funny, and because it is still in development each performance will be new and different. Collect all six! Click here to read a preview article in the NY Times!
I’m excited to announce that I’ve just signed on for a month-long workshop and performances of WOW, a new opera in development by composer Joe Diebes, director David Levine and poet Christian Hawkey. Performances will take place during the last two weekends of January 2014 at BRIC House. More info to come!
As announced on dell’Arte’s Facebook page:
“First Prize” is awarded to Alison Cheeseman “For constant commitment to the process and for consistently evolving integration of acting and singing technique. An unquestionable example of what dell’Arte Opera Ensemble is all about.” Through the entire five-month process, Alison never once stopped striving (personally and as a committed colleague) and delivered finely etched performances every night.
“Dell’Arte serves as a training ground for rising young singers, and the vocal performances here spoke well for its efforts. Greer Davis, a soprano, was wonderful as Poppea, clear-voiced and self-possessed; Alison Taylor Cheeseman, a mezzo-soprano, was also lovely and sturdy as Nerone. Their blend was excellent in “Pur ti miro.””
James R. Oestreich, The New York Times
“Nobly abiding by the composer’s prescribed vocal ranges, the production featured a mezzo as Nerone, the brooding and fiery Alison Cheeseman… Looking remarkably like a young Patti Smith, Cheeseman commanded the role’s wide-ranging vocal and dramatic compass—from raging at the roadblocks Ottavia and Seneca throw in his way to swooning at his lover’s demanding charms.
As Poppea, Greer Davis was a bewitching young seductress on the make… their powerful erotic connection held the evening’s focus.”