John Arsenault has been enjoying a busy musical career in BC since 1998 as a frequent performer of opera, oratorio and choral music. John was a member of the Vancouver Opera Chorus for 14 seasons, during which time he also appeared in a dozen small and supporting roles.
Currently concentrating on engagement as a freelance conductor, John is the former founding Music Director of DragonDiva Operatic Theatre, and the former conductor for the Vancouver Academy of Music opera workshop. He works frequently with small opera companies in British Columbia and has been the principal conductor of Vancouver Island Opera for seven seasons. His other passion is life is Organizational Effectiveness and Leadership Development. In June 2017, John graduates with an MA in Leadership from Royal Roads University.
Jeanine Fynn is an active director in the Vancouver opera scene who is known for putting twists on traditional works. Trained as a singer and performer, her imagination, experience and expertise are assets to every production she helms. A proponent of Opera as entertainment for all, Jeanine was founding Artistic Director of DragonDiva Operatic Theatre which premiered in 2007 and closed its doors after a triumphant run in the Summer of 2014. The award-winning non-profit company produced semi-professional shows across the lower mainland, giving performance opportunities to young professionals, post-secondary students, and community members. Jeanine is the founding Curator/Director for the viral photography project Fez on a Chaise as part of her ongoing commitment to community engagement. She is also a proud member of Vancouver Opera’s professional chorus, and can be seen in this season’s upcoming production of Requiem for a Lost Girl.
Maria Hwa Yeong Jung is an active vocal collaborative pianist from Burnaby.Maria has worked at University of Toronto Faculty of Music as a vocal coach and staff accompanist, and accompanied the renowned Oriana Women’s Chorus and Acquired Taste Choir with conductor Mitchell Pady. She also worked as a music director and repetiteur for the Summer Opera Lyric Theater for the productions of Handel’s Cesare, and Marschner’s Der Vampyr. Maria is a graduate of University of Toronto, where she earned her Master’s degree in Piano Performance and Pedagogy, and Bachelor’s degree in Music Education under the tutelage of Lydia Wong and Dr. James Parker. Recently graduated from New England Conservatory of Music, she studied with Dr. Cameron Stowe and John Moriarty in the Collaborative Piano Graduate Diploma program.
She has performed with Music friends recital society as a collaborative artist, worked closely with Opera Mariposa for their production of Puccini’s Gianni Scchichi and debuted as a music director for their opera scenes concert. She is a faculty member at VSO school of music, a vocal coach at Vancouver Academy of Music for their college department and a staff pianist at Shadbolt Center for the Arts Dance department.
Kevin Armstrong, Tenor
Kevin Armstrong grew Nelson, British Columbia, where studied guitar, drums and voice. He moved to Montreal to pursue music studies at McGill University, completing his Master’s Degree in Opera Performance. Kevin was a member of Zürich opera’s “Internationales Opernstudio” in 2002, followed by hundreds of performances in numerous theatres, including Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Bremen and Zürich. He performed the role of Pontius Pilate in several productions of Jesus Christ Superstar, and spent several months on tour in Austria, Germany and Switzerland with “Night of the Musicals”. Kevin presently resides in New Westminster, and splits his time between singing and acting in film and television. His credits include featured roles in commercials for Transamerica, General Mills, goodnessKnows, Cox Communications, and appearances in “Lucifer”, “The Flash” and “Arrow”. He performs regularly with Vancouver opera, as well as on the Fringe circuit with his solo performance “Opera for Heathens”.
Allyson Hop, Soprano
Elizabeth de Valois
Soprano, Allyson Hop holds a Master’s degree in Opera from the University of British Columbia and Bachelor’s degree in Music from the University of Victoria. She participated in several competitions throughout her studies winning the University of Victoria Concerto Competition, the District NATSAA Competition, and an encouragement award from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. She has performed roles such as Suor Dolcina in Suor Angelica; Mařenka in Prodaná nevěsta; La Contessa in Le nozze di Figaro; Donna Anna in Don Giovanni; and the titular role in Rusalka.
In 2016, Allyson was honoured to portray the role of Grandmother in the touring production of Stickboy with Vancouver Opera in Schools and continues to sing with Vancouver Opera. More recently, Allyson explored her love of lieder presenting a concert with pianist Karl Hirzer at the
National Music Centre and subsequently collaborated on a new work as a Stringray Classical artist-in-residence with Studio Bell. Allyson is absolutely thrilled to be performing her first Verdi role with Heroic Opera alongside this wonderful cast and crew!
Andrew Greenwood, Bass-Baritone
“Another discovery was the Amonasro of Andrew Greenwood. The young baritone from Vancouver’s voice has a seductive texture. His focused but nevertheless round sound had sufficient power and at the same time creamy elegance. He was able to manipulate Aida with an extremely refined and beautiful vocal sound.” Das Opernglas, February 2011. Recent engagements include: the role of Amonasro in Aida for the Stadttheater Hildesheim, and the Stadttheater Wolfsburg, Germany; Frank in Die Fledermaus for Vancouver Opera; Zuniga in Carmen and The Doctor in Samuel Barber’s Vanessa for Pacific Opera Victoria; the title role in Rigoletto for the Stadttheater Hildesheim; the roles of Prince Yamadori and The Imperial Commissioner in Madama Butterfly for Vancouver Opera; the title roles in Macbeth, and Nabucco, Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, and Germont in La Traviata for Vancouver’s Opera Pro Cantanti; the role of the Emperor in Der Kaiser von Atlantis for City Opera Vancouver; the role of Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro for Opera Kelowna and for the 2006 Okanagan Vocal Arts Festival; Marcello in La bohème for UBC Opera, the 2005 Okanagan Vocal Arts Festival, and for Vancouver Island Opera; Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia for Vancouver Island Opera; Danilo in The Merry Widow for Burnaby Lyric Opera; and guest appearances with UBC Opera in the title roles of Falstaff and Eugene Onegin.
Cameron Killick, Baritone
With a voice hailed by Opera Canada as ‘stunning’, ‘powerful’ and ‘sonorous’, baritone Cameron Killick has established himself among the forefront of Vancouver’s resident classical singers. He began studying music at the age of 16, attending Douglas College and later transferring to the University of British Columbia where he graduated with a degree in Opera Performance in 2014. He has worked with many of the arts organizations in town including Vancouver Opera, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, City Opera Vancouver, the Post-modern Camerata and the Vancouver Cantata Singers. Recent performance credits include baritone soloist in Orff’s ‘Carmina Burana’ with Laudate Singers and the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, Banquo in Verdi’s ‘Macbeth’ with Heroic Opera and Guglielmo from Mozart’s ‘Cosi fan Tutte’ as well as Germont from Verdi’s ‘La Traviata’ with Opera Mariposa. Over the past few years he has branched into music production, arranging and recording, mostly as a means of staying sane during COVID.
Melissa Ratcliff, Mezzo-Soprano
Hailed as “brilliant” (Opera Canada) and “honey-voiced” (Review Vancouver), Mezzo-Soprano Melissa studied music at the University of Alberta before moving to Vancouver. Recent appearances include Dorabella in Cosi fan tutte with Opera Mariposa, Lady Macbeth in Macbeth, Klytaemnestra in Elektra and Rossweisse in Die Walküre with Heroic Opera, Lady Jane in Patience Prince Orlofsky in Die Fledermaus with the North Shore Light Opera Society, Griselda in Alma with East Van Opera, Lt. Commander Joanne Galloway in A Few Good Men and Judge Group in Miracle on 34th Street with Theatre in the Country, and Cio Cio San’s Aunt in Madama Butterfly with Burnaby Lyric Opera. Melissa has performed regularly with the Vancouver Bach Choir, Burnaby Lyric Opera, Opera Opulenza, Chilliwack Opera and others.
Odyn Muller, Bass-Baritone
Odyn Mulder (they/them) began their musical training at age seventeen at the University of Victoria, studying bass trombone under Scott MacInnes, and voice under soprano Susan Young. Odyn performed in the University of Victoria’s chorus, vocal jazz, chamber choir, wind symphony, brass quintet, brass choir, and trombone choir, before coming under the tutelage of tenor Dustin Lee Hiles.
Odyn performed as a soloist with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra alongside soprano Rachel Buttress in December 2022, and has also performed with figures such as Juno nominated guitarist Bill Coon, jazz pianist Miles Black, and Dr. Edward Bach of Brandon University. Odyn is now enrolled in the Performance Prep program at the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra School of Music under Diane King, and hopes to complete their vocal studies at the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.
Robin Hahn, Soprano
Tebaldo, Cover for Elizabeth
Hailed as “sublime, with a beautiful resonant soprano full of colour” (Opera Canada), lyric soprano Robin Hahn has appeared on stages around the world, from Germany to New York to Disneyland. In the 2022-2023 season, Robin has performed the Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors; Nella in Gianni Schicchi; and as a soprano soloist with the Music of the Night tour, singing favourites by Andrew Lloyd Webber across the greater Toronto area. She was a Metropolitan Opera competition Encouragement Award winner in 2015, and a monetary winner again in 2021. Robin is a co-founder of Opera Mariposa, Canada’s first openly disability-led and -run opera company; an in-demand stage director for operas across the Lower Mainland; and an award-winning educational YouTuber creating videos about opera and disability. She is next set to direct productions of Iolanthe and The Magic Flute. Connect: @robinhahnsopran
Sevan Kochkarian, Soprano
Voice from Heaven
Sevan Kochkarian is a lyric coloratura soprano from Vancouver BC. Sevan began her musical journey at the age of 8 when she was enrolled in piano lessons and joined the Vancouver Children’s Choir. At the age of 11 she started her private voice lessons and started dance classes at Precision Dance Academy. In her teenage years she studied at Vancouver Academy of Music with an Emphasis in Opera before heading to McGill University getting her Bachelor’s and Master’s in Opera and Voice performance. Sevan has been seen performing all over Canada and Europe. Some of her roles include Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, Morgana in Alcina, Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, Mabel in Pirates of Penzances, Adina in L’elisir d’amore, Rita in Rita, Papagena in Die Zauberflöte, Paquette in Candide and many more. Opera Canada has written two reviews on her hailing her voice: “Beautiful and sings with a huge range of emotions” and claiming to have played her characters with “Sensitivity, and nuance and a true feeling of desire”. Sevan also studied at the Vancouver Acting School + Railtown Actors Studio for 5 years and is with Premiere Talent Agency doing TV and Film work. In addition to Opera, Sevan also has a huge passion for Musical Theatre and has performed in countless productions across the country. Her roles include Eponine in Les Misérables, Natalie Goodman in Next to Normal, Ariel Moore in Footloose, The Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods, Mayzie La Bird in Seussical, and more.
Vicente Sandoval, Tenor
Count of Lerna
Vicente is honoured to be joining Heroic Opera in this production alongside such talented artists. Born and raised in Mexico City, where he began his studies in classical singing, he then graduated from Sheridan College’s Music Theatre-Performance Program and was part of Royal Caribbean Cruises as a Production Cast Singer for several years. He now calls Vancouver home and was most recently seen this past summer in the role of Nigel Bottom in the Theatre Under the Stars production of Something Rotten! Other credits include Cabaret (Raincity Theatre), Kismet in Concert Style (RCMT), Comedy of Tenors (Metro Theatre), Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi (Opera Mariposa) and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Gateway Theatre). Much love to Blair, Soma, and his Vancouver friends and family.
Frantz De Rycke, Bass-Baritone
Frantz started to learn music (piano) at age five with Maestro Mantia, Director of the Conservatorio di Musica di Roma, Italy. His passion for Lyric Opera logically led him to singing, and he is very grateful for the guidance from his voice teachers, Joseph Shore and Richard Williams.
He has sung with Vancouver Opera, Burnaby Lyric Opera, Opera Mariposa, Heroic Opera, Opera Opulenza, North Shore Light Opera Society and Opera Pro Cantanti. While living in Paris, he performed with opera companies such as Choeurs Symphoniques de Paris, Allegro Assai and Operacademy.
Nadine Cornelius , Mezzo-Soprano
Mezzo-Soprano Nadine Cornelius was born in South Africa where she grew up singing in choirs and performed throughout the continent with many South African groups, including the South African National Youth Choir. In Canada, Nadine turned to Opera under world-renowned dramatic soprano, Frances Ginzer, and began her career with the Calgary Opera Chorus. In the chorus she performed in numerous mainstage productions including Carmen, La Boheme, Le Nozze di Figaro, Pagliacci, Otello, and Calgary Opera’s inaugural summer festival production of The Pirates of Penzance, to name a few. Title roles include “Maurya” in Vaughan William’s Riders to the Sea, and the “Old Maid” in Menotti’s Old Maid and the Thief with Mount Royal University, as well as small main stage roles with Calgary Opera during her time with the chorus. Most recently Nadine sang the role of the “Sorceress” in Dido and Aeneas with the Vancouver Academy of Music, and the “Zweite Magd” in Elektra with Heroic Opera. Nadine also sings with Opera Opulenza and enjoys participating in lunch-hour concerts at seniors’ homes. Nadine is thrilled to be a part of the Don Carlo cast, and her second production with Heroic Opera!
Lindsay Gillis , Soprano
Countess of Aremberg, Cover for Tebaldo and Voice from Heaven
Lindsay Gillis, a singer of “outstanding talent and remarkable musicality” (Manhattan Music Competition) lives in Vancouver, British Columbia. She grew up in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, earned her Master of Music in Ottawa, and has moved gradually westward to find a community of music that matches her passion for opera, musical theater, and classical singing. Since arriving in Vancouver, Lindsay has sung with numerous local opera companies, directed scenes from Don Giovanni with Crescendo Operatic Society, and produced “A Breath of Fresh Air”, a virtual concert with The Opera Project. Some of her roles include Pamina in Die Zauberflöte, Rosalinda in Die Fledermaus, Violetta in La Traviata, Zerlina in Don Giovanni, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, and Frasquita in Carmen. As an artist, Lindsay strives to infuse traditional repertoire with contemporary understanding for greater accessibility.