Category Archives: Performances

Alkemie: A Worthy Mirror, February 2024

Alkemie, together with guest artist Amanda Gookin of the Forward Music Project, presents “A Worthy Mirror” — a commissioning project of female and non-binary composers in response to 12th-century trobairitz texts. One of those composers is me!

I’ve had the great honor of contributing a song to this fascinating and delightful project. The text I chose to set expresses the dismay of a young woman trapped in a loveless marriage to a much older man, and her hopes of reunion with her lover.

A Worthy Mirror” represents a time-traveling dialogue with the 12th-century trobairitzthe feminine counterpart of the poet-composers known as troubadours. Together with Forward Music Project, we are commissioning eleven female and non-binary composers to respond to and converse with the 36 extant trobairitz texts (of which we only have music for one). This body of lyric poetry represents a large group of historically female and anonymous femme voices in the literary tradition. Witty, ironic, heartbreaking, and erotic—these texts present a mirror to reflect upon what feels foreign about the past and what feels familiar, what is the role of gender and self in relationships, and how do we make space for the multiplicities of identity, both in the 12th century and today.

February 25, 2024 at 7:30 pm EST (doors open at 6:30pm)

National Sawdust
80 North 6th Street
Brooklyn, NY 11249

Composers for this program include Gelsey Bell, Maya Bennardo, Alison Cheeseman, Hai-Ting Chinn, Melika Fitzhugh, Sarah Goldfeather, Tis Kaoru Zamler-Carhart, Racquel Acevedo Klein, Li Qi, Niccolo Seligmann, and Patricia van Ness
The performers are:
Tracy Cowart: voice, harps, percussion
David McCormick: vielle, rebec
Ben Matus: voice, bagpipes, lute, dulcians
Sian Ricketts: voice, recorders, douçaines
Niccolo Seligmann: vielles, scheitholt, gittern, psaltery, percussion
Elisa Sutherland: voice
With Guest Artist
Amanda Gookin: cello

You can buy tickets in advance online ($25+fees).

“An Auditory Revisualism” @ Experimental Sound Studio, June 2021

Digital explorations continue even as live performances are finally resuming. I was honored with an invitation to contribute a piece to this international virtual concert. Tune in to check out my latest music video!

The Consortionist Presents: An Auditory Revisualism
Hosted by Experimental Sound Studio

Friday, June 25, 2021 at 7:00pm Central Time

Streaming on Twitch — Tune in here

Artist Line-up:
Alison Cheeseman (NY)
cave__ baby (Malibu)
Tongo Eisen-Martin (SF)
Holly Hunt (Miami)
Bill Noertker’s Vhythm (SF)
Hieroglyphic Being (Chicago)
MJ Guider (New Orleans)
Alli Warren & Syd Staiti (SF)
Noel V Harmonson (SF)
Tallawit Timbouktu (Timbuktu)
Sabiwa (Taiwan)

It’s free! No tickets or registration required.
$5+ suggested donation (100% goes to the artists)

Dido & Aeneas, 2022 (POSTPONED from March 2020 due to COVID-19)

Dido and Aeneas, by Henry Purcell
with a prelude of Purcell’s Welcome to all the Pleasures
Presented by Cerddorion Vocal Ensemble as part of their 25th anniversary season

Friday, March 27 at 8 pm
Saturday, March 28 at 3 pm, with reception to follow

Good Shepherd-Faith Presbyterian Church (map)
152 West 66th Street
New York, NY 10023

James John, Cerddorion’s Artistic Director, Conductor–Musical Director
Christopher Caines, Director/Choreographer
Cerddorion Vocal Ensemble
and a fine period band, players TBA
Philip Sandstrom, Lighting Designer
Olivia Hern, Costume Designer

Cast —

Dido Alison Taylor Cheeseman
Aeneas Bradley J. King
Belinda Merrin Lazyan
Sorceress Jordan Rutter
Melissa, aka Second Woman Anna Harmon
Diana (her statue and the goddess herself) Leigh Schanfein, dancer
The Sorceress’ Familiar Drew Paramore, actor
Aeneas’s Admiral (“1st Sailor”) Gerard Gallagher, baritone
Sorceress’s Spirit/Witch in the guise of Mercury Allegra Kuney, alto
Sarah (alto soloist lady-in-waiting in 7, etc.) Jamie Carrillo, alto
Witch 1 Ellen Schorr
Witch 2 Talya Jennings


You can buy them online, or at the door.

Bach in Bar Thalia with Evan Shinners, March 2020

Motets and more, by J.S. Bach. Says the Arbor Music Series:

Arbor Music presents a Bach Cabaret featuring some of the finest musicians in the city singing the finest vocal music ever written. Evan Shinners gives a brief tour through the vast world of Bach’s sacred vocal music showcasing the master’s unparalleled techniques of ‘word painting’.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020 at 6:30pm & 8:30pm

Bar Thalia (map)
Lower Level, 2537 Broadway
New York, NY 10025

“The Bach Store All-Stars”
Sopranos: Elaine Lachica and Linda Jones
Altos: Alison Cheeseman and Donna Breitzer
Tenors: Lukas Papenfusscline and Paul D’Arcy
Basses: Chris Herbert and Anicet Castel
Accordion: Ivan FIlipchyk
Gamba: Arnie Tanimoto
Violins: Tatiana Chulochiknova and Jeremy Rhizor
Viola: Colin Brooks
Guitar: Ming-Jui Liu
Conductor: Evan Shinners

For more information and for tickets, see There’s also a Facebook Event.

Stonewall, New York City Opera, June 2019

I was honored and delighted to be a part of New York City Opera’s world premiere of Stonewall, by Iain Bell and Mark Campbell, covering the role of Sarah (sung by Liz Bouk). Performances took place June 21-28, 2019, honoring the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising.

NYCO Pride in the Park

Backstage at NYCO’s “Pride in the Park” celebration, with members of the cast.

Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Rose Theater (map)
Time Warner Center
10 Columbus Circle, NY, NY 10019

Iain Bell, Composer
Mark Campbell, Librettist
Carolyn Kuan, Conductor
Leonard Foglia, Director
Richard Stafford, Choreographer

The talented and beautifully diverse cast of singers and actors featured Joseph Charles Beutel, Andrew Bidlack, Liz Bouk, Lisa Chavez, Michael Corvino, Jessica Fishenfeld, Marc Heller, Brian James Myer, Jordan Weatherston Pitts, and Justin Ryan. For more information, see

Song & Dance with Christopher Caines, May/June 2019

listen out loud / move to keep things whole
I’ll be singing four original settings of sonnets to accompany the exquisite dancers of Christopher Caines Dance Company, on a program that also features music by Pauline Oliveros and Paul Kerekes. Variously scored for piano, flute, and clarinet, the songs are musical readings of poems by Edna St. Vincent Millay, Christian Wiman, Sir Thomas Wyatt, and Elizabeth Barrett-Browning.

Saturday, 18 May 2019, 8:00 p.m.
Thursday, 23 May 2019, 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, 1 June 2019, 8:00 p.m.

Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan (map)
334 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

Christopher Caines Dance: Elisa Toro Franky, Silken Kelly, Mayu Oguri, Jacob Taylor, Amanda Treiber, and Michelle Vargo, joined by students from the New York Theatre Ballet School
Marija Ilic, piano
Kelley Barnett, flutes
Eric Umble/Vicente Alexim, clarinets

Click here to buy them online

Appearing as guests are The Bang Group in a New York premiere by David Parker, a recent revival by Parker of a work by James Waring, and a new duet by Amber Sloan.

Die Zauberflöte with Opera in Williamsburg, May 2019

Die Zauberflöte (The Magic Flute) by W. A. Mozart
With Yours Truly as the Third Spirit, aka 3. Knabe, aka member of the suicide-prevention trio.

Sunday, 5 May 2019, 2:00 p.m.
Tuesday, 7 May 2019, 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, 9 May 2019, 7:00 p.m.

The Kimball Theatre (map)
428 W Duke of Gloucester St.
Williamsburg, VA 23185

Opera in Williamsburg
Jorge Parodi, conductor & music director
Eve Summer, director
. . . And a cast of thousands! Ok, not quite, but it’s a big cast. See the OiW website for more info.

Click here to buy them online.

In this opera, the characters are easily dissuaded from self-harm, but in real life it’s not necessarily so simple. As the National Institute of Mental Health puts it, “If You Know Someone in Crisis: Call the toll-free National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL) at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The service is available to everyone. The deaf and hard of hearing can contact the Lifeline via TTY at 1-800-799-4889. All calls are confidential. Contact social media outlets directly if you are concerned about a friend’s social media updates or dial 911 in an emergency. Learn more on the NSPL’s website.”

Bach with the Helena Symphony Orchestra, February 2019

I’m thrilled to be headed west in February for two performances as the Alto/Soprano II soloist Bach’s magnificent Mass in B minor.

Bach’s Mass in B minor, BWV 232

Allan R. Scott, conductor
Alison Taylor Cheeseman, mezzo-soprano
Rachel E. Copeland, soprano
Johnathan Weyant, tenor
Peter Kendall Clark, baritone
Helena Symphony Orchestra & Chorale

Sunday, 24 February 2019, 7:30 p.m.
Monday, 25 February 2019, 7:30 p.m.

Cathedral of Saint Helena
530 N Ewing St, Helena, MT 59601 (map)

Available for purchase through the HSO website — click here!

The Barber of Seville, July 2018

Ready for a road trip? I’ll be spending the month of July in beautiful Geneva, New York with the Geneva Light Opera Company, appearing as Berta (and covering Rosina) in a production of Rossini’s The Barber of Seville.

Rossini’s The Barber of Seville (Il barbiere di Siviglia),
performed in English with chamber orchestra.

Thursday, July 26 at 7:30 pm
Saturday, July 28 at 7:30 pm
Sunday, July 29 at 3:00 pm

The Smith Opera House
82 Seneca St, Geneva, NY 14456 Map Icon

James Blachly, Conductor
Benjamin Spierman, Stage Director

— Cast —

Rosina Sarah Nordin
Berta Alison Cheeseman
Count Almaviva Alexey Kukharskiy
Figaro Jimi James
Dr. Bartolo Valerian Ruminski
Don Basilio Tyler Putnam
Fiorello Nicholas Kilkenny
Giunone Erik Danielson
Police Officer Taylor Kirk
Ambrosius Nicholas Kilkenny


Click here to buy them online.

And Whatnot?
Perhaps you will use your visit to the Smith this month as an opportunity to scope out the venue and figure out where you want to sit when you come back for the Red Hot Chilli Pipers next spring!

Mozart Requiem, January 2018

On January the 28th, I had the pleasure of joining the Mineola Choral Society, led by Thomas W. Jones, in a performance of Mozart’s Requiem. I was the alto soloist, singing with the marvelous Tanya Roberts, soprano; Benjamin Krumreig, tenor; and Edward Hanlon, bass. The chorus and orchestra also performed other works by Mozart, Fauré, Bruckner, et al. It was a delightful afternoon of music at the St. Catherine of Sienna Church in Franklin Square, NY. Bravi tutti!