FROM ISABEL MILENSKI, ARTISTIC DIRECTOR:
True to form, opera is perpetually in states of death, rebirth, the ridiculous, and the sublime. I have never found a closer and more beautiful reflection and distortion of life. So I keep coming back to the form--as a producer and director. We have named the company after a physical sensation – one that happens when we are lifted by an event, element or an experience. The company is part of a continuum of artistic vision and lineage, of the transformative musical and theatrical form itself which is four hundred and fifteen years old. As part of this family of visionaries, we continue to MAKE, century by century – minute by minute. We defy odds and provoke history. New York is the canvas upon which we work, but that canvas will grow. Our launch of Floating Opera New York is an invitation to FLOAT with us. We are here to work iconoclastically within the Zeitgeist (the spirit of our times). This is an invitation to all those curious to experience worldly and other worldly operatic creations. JOIN US!
Isabel Milenski / Founder, Artistic Director, Stage Director
Ms. Milenski made her Lincoln Center debut directing Juilliard's The Marriage of Figaro. For the Getty Center in Los Angeles she has directed Peri’s Euridice, and Virginia Woolf's only play, Freshwater. For the Long Beach Opera in California, she has directed Shostakovich’s Moscow, Cherry Town, along with Janacek’s Jenufa, Milhaud's Trois Operas Minutes, Richard Strauss' The Silent Woman, along with Handel's Semele. Recently she has directed Apollo and Daphne at Pocket Opera of New York and the off-Broadway musical, Woody Guthrie Dreams.
Other productions she has directed include a rock opera, The Fire Odyssey, an adaptation of Homer's Odyssey. She has directed Cosi Fan Tutte and The Turn of the Screw at Cincinnati Conservatory—which won a National Opera Association award. In Cincinnati she also co-directed Argento's The Voyage of Edgar Allen Poe. Other productions include Smetana's The Bartered Bride, Kurt Weill's Street Scene and The Pirates of Penzance for Grand Valley State University, Grand Rapids.
Aside from her professional directing work, she has been working with singers at conservatories and young artist programs across the U.S. and internationally. She has taught and directed for the San Francisco Opera Center, Cincinnati Conservatory, Penn State University and The Juilliard School, The National Center for the Performing Arts in Bejing, as well as the China and Peking Conservatory. She has been on faculty at Manhattan School of Music’s Summer Voice Festival, where she both taught and directed La Calisto and L’incoronazione di Poppea.
Jian Jung / Set Designer
Jian is a New York based set designer for theater and opera.
Jung has been working with Ms. Milenski for many years. Their opera work ranges from the popular masterpiece, Le Nozze di Figaro at Juilliard, to the rarely performed, Moskva, Cheremushki at Long Beach Opera, CA, and to the intimate, Apollo e Daphne at Galapagos Art Space, among many others.
Jung’s design for theater has been in many downtown New York theaters including Classic Stage Company and Incubator Arts Project, and educational institutions including Columbia University, Hofstra University, and The New School. She also has been working with the Latin American theater community for years.
Jung’s recent design for Crime and Punishment in Caracas, Venezuela, was exhibited in Prague Quadrennial 2015. ‘Zoetrope’, a new play designed by Jung, will travel to Puerto Rico next year. Jung received a 2015 Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Award for her set design for 'Ludic Proxy'.
Jung’s design works have been acclaimed as 'innovative', 'inventive', 'genius' and 'spectacular' by major press including The New York Times. While her productions range from classic masterpieces to new plays by emerging artists, her design always focuses on innovative delivery of the piece, provoking audience expectations.
She received an MFA in Theater Design from New York University, and an MFA in Environmental Design from Ewha Women’s University in Korea. She teaches Theater Design in Stony Brook University, SUNY.
Please visit her website: www.jianjung.com
Jeanette Yew / Lighting Designer
Jeanette is a NYC based lighting designer. Her designs have been seen in venues such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), Rose Theater at Lincoln Center, HERE Arts Center, St. Ann's Warehouse, La Mama ETC, ArtsEmerson, Manhattan School of Music, Joyce SOHO, REDCAT and Highways Performance Space, and internationally at Havana, Prague, Lima, Graz and Edinburgh. Her work was recently described as “…contains the vibrant richness of a Caravaggio painted in neon. Her artistic voice sculpts the performers with sensitivity, never allowing the velvet beams of color to flatten their statuesque forms.”
This is her tenth collaboration with Isabel Milenski. Together they collaborated on Die Verschworenen/Die Winterreise, Dido and Aeneas & L'Ivrogne Corrige, Princess Ida, La Calisto, Alcina, Don Giovanni, Die Fledermaus, and L'incoronazione di Poppea. Recent operas: the world premiere of Stefan Weisman’s The Scarlet Ibis and Kamala Sankaram’s Thumbprint at Prototype Festival, HK Gruber's Gloria - A Pig Tale with Alan Gilbert (the New York Philharmonic) and Doug Fitch (Giants Are Small), semi-stage production of Schubert’s Fierrabras at Bard Music Festival 2014 with Leon Botstein, Gotham Opera’s Orientale, Jonathan Dawe’s Cosi Faran Tutti, Sheila Silver’s The Wooden Sword, Peter Winkler’s Fox Fables with Rhoda Levine, America Opera Project’s semi-stage premieres of The Wanton Sublime and The Companion, Aaron Siegel’s Brother Brother premiered at Abrons Art Center, Eliogabalo and Jepthe & Provenzale with Jennifer Griesbach conducted by David Lawton, Handel’s Alcina with Pocket Opera NY and Donizetti’ Lucia di Lammermoor with Stony Brook University.
Other designs: Aya Ogawa’s Ludic Proxy (awarded with a Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Fund), Company XIV’s Nutcracker Rouge (nominated for Drama Desk Award), Matthew Paul Olmos’ So Go the Ghosts of Mexico: Part One (nominated for best lighting design with 2013 New York Innovative Theatre Awards), Zoetrope Part 1+2 with Caborca (at Encuentro Festival Los Angeles), Elizabeth Swados and Cecilia Rubino's From the Fire (winner of the 2011 MTM: UK Musical Theatre Awards for Best New Production), Conni's Avant Garde Restaurant Returns in: The Mothership Landing (nominated for best lighting design with 2012 New York Innovative Theatre Awards), The Foundry's How Much is Enough, Aya Ogawa's Oph3lia, and Erik Ehn's commemorative cycle Soulographie: Our Genocides. Upcoming: Informed Consent with Primary Stages. Jeanette was the recipient of the NEA/TCG Career Development Program and is a lecturer with Stony Brook University.
Please visit her website: www.jeanetteyew.com
Christina Lorraine Bullard / Costume Designer
Christina is a New York based costume designer whose work spans opera, theatre, dance, and independent film. Additionally, drawing on her background in Art History, Studio Art, Costume Design, and Fashion Design, Christina develops and presents workshops that harness the transfer value of the arts as a platform for teaching skills in human-centered design thinking. She is currently the Assistant Professor of Costume Design for UCONN. MFA Yale School of Drama.
International Design Credits: Five Beasts (Lyon, France). New York City Design Credits: Left Exit, Aria/Apology, and Fire Weather for the Sean Curran Company. The Marriage of Figaro, The Day Room, and Tales of the Lost Formicans for Fordham University. The Marriage of Figaro for The Juilliard School. New Works: Wax Wings; God, Sex, and Blue Water; Metro Psalm; Ugo's Last Dance; The Boss in the Satin Kimono; Couldn't Say; and Like Love for Off-Broadway. Milton Hubbell and Run, Mourner, Run for Yale Cabaret. In the Red and Brown Water for Yale School of Drama. Regional Credits: Die Fledermaus and The Coronation of Poppea for Hofstra University. Lulu for Yale Repertory Theatre. Film: Goldstar, Ohio.
George Hemcher / Associate Music Director
George is a native of Frazer PA, is a conductor/director, pianist, and tenor. Mr. Hemcher is the music director of the Opera Scenes program at Hofstra University. With the Delaware Valley Opera he was a répétiteur for Verdi’s Otello, and for Mozart’s Die Entführung Aus Am Serail and made his conducting debut in the 2012 DVO production of Cole Porter’s Kiss Me Kate. In 2013, he was the music director for Mozart's Der Shauspieldirektor. George has also collaborated with Pocket Opera of New York, Regina Opera in Brooklyn, Light Opera of New York, eVoco Women's Ensemble, Voci da Camera, Oyster Bay Music Festival and in master classes for Thomas Hampson, Lauren Flanigan, and John Fisher. As a singer, George has performed roles in Die Fledermaus (Dr. Blind), and Don Giovanni (Don Ottavio) at Hofstra University. At DVO, George sang Spärlich in Nicolai’s Die Lustigen Weiber von Windsor. George recently made his Carnegie Hall Stern Auditorium debut with the Distinguished Concerts in New York orchestra in Steven Sametz' Carmina Amoris in 2014. George was also seen as the music director and pianist with Venture Opera in Donizetti's Don Pasquale at the Opera America Recital Hall and at the Kay Meek Center in Vancouver, Canada.