All-New 2015 WSWDC Newsletter!

This beautifully-produced document contains a sneak preview of upcoming events, a retrospective of our 2014-15 season, updates on the American Wagner Project, news on the 2016 WNO Ring Cycle, and much, much more!! Download your copy here!

Jeffrey Swann: The Visionary Genius of Beethoven

Friday, October 9, 2015, 7:30 pm
Katzen Arts Center, American University
4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington DC
Free garage parking after 5:00 pm

Pianist Jeffrey Swann presents this concert in memory of longtime WSWDC member and Wagner Award honoree, Prof. Donald Crosby. The program includes Beethoven Sonata Op. 101, Scriabin Sonata No. 9 (100th anniversary of his death), and Beethoven Sonata Op. 53 (Waldstein).

Purchase tickets using the form below. 2016 WSWDC members and students with ID may attend free by clicking here to RSVP. If you have not yet joined or renewed your WSWDC membership for 2016, you may do so by clicking here. (Be sure to click the RSVP link after you join!) You may also download a reservation form here.

Jeffrey Swann has had a worldwide concert career and is a featured lecturer at the Wagner in der Wildnis retreat and at Bayreuth. His large and varied repertoire includes more than 50 concertos as well as solo works ranging from Bach to Boulez.

Jeffrey Swann Concert 2015

Saul Lilienstein on Wagner: The Arts of Transition & Transformation

Wednesday, November 18, 2015, 7:30 pm
812 Seventh Street, NW, Washington DC
Metro to Gallery Place/Chinatown (Red, Yellow, and Green Lines)
Click here
for an index of area parking garages

No composer knew more of journeys and destinations in his life and in his art than Wagner. Lilienstein will explore those magical moments in the music dramas, from Flying Dutchman to Parsifal, where “time and space become interchangeable.”

Saul Lilienstein has done many lectures for WSWDC and a series of full-day lectures at the Goethe-Institut. He is also a familiar presence at the Smithsonian Institution, John Hopkins University in Rockville, and the Kennedy Center. He has done an extensive set of opera commentaries for Washington National Opera.

FREE and open to the public. No RSVP necessary.

Issachah Savage Interview on WETA!

Classical WETA’s Marilyn Cooley recently spoke with Issachah Savage about his background and training and the first time he met the late soprano, Evelyn Lear. Issachah, as we know, is singing the title role in Wagner's rarely-performed opera, Rienzi, presented by the National Philharmonic in partnership with WSWDC.

Hear the full interview here! 

Additional Events for 2015-16!


Met Simulcast: Tannhäuser

Saturday, October 31, 2015, 12:00 noon

Tickets on sale now. Click here for theaters! (Note: Regal Cinema Ballston Commons will not present the Met's Live in HD simulcasts this season.)

Ring Cruise on the Potomac

Monday, May 16, 2016, 6:00-9:00 pm

Additional details to come! Presented in partnership with the Washington National Opera.

Wagner in der Wildnis: Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg

Friday, June 3-Sunday, June 5, 2016
Cacapon Resort State Park, Berkley Springs, WV

Additional details to come!

AWP News: Jennifer Wilson in Bayreuth!

John Edward Niles, WSWDC Director and Director of the American Wagner Project (formerly the Emerging Singers Program) sent us this news item about ESP alumna Jennifer Wilson:

I am glad to report that Jennifer is safely ensconsed at Bayreuth with a very lovely apartment in a nice neighborhood (are they any bad neighborhoods in Bayreuth?) and--according to her--a very nice landlady.

Officially she is just covering this summer, but then, who knows?

Next year she is singing Sieglinde.

Of course, someone might get sick or walk out or ... whatever.

In any case, she is there and will be until September and then here in VA for a few weeks and then the Met.

At last stuff is starting to happen for that girl. It's about time!



The Final Toast

Longtime WSWDC Member Donald Crosby

Returning from a few weeks in Europe, flying at 38,000 feet over the Atlantic, in First Class, Donald had a heart attack and died.

He and Bonnie had just raised a champagne toast to the end of pleasant travels that included visiting family in Garmisch and cruising the Danube to Budapest.

In the next month or so, there will be a Celebration of Life as an opportunity for friends to exchange "Donald stories" and remember his love for German literature, passion for classical music, and zest for zany activities!

There is no date as yet, but we will keep you informed.

Click here to read Donald's obituary in the Washington Post.


Jennifer Wilson Sings Title Role in Turandot at the Met!

Jennifer Wilson, an alumna of WSWDC's Emerging Singers Program (now the American Wagner Project), will sing the title role in the Zeffirelli production of Puccini's Turandot at the Metropolitan Opera on November 12, 2015! She recently sang the role in Naples with four performances at the Teatro San Carlo! Congratulations, Jennifer!

Opera in Europe Tours

Opera In Europe, LLC, has several exciting tours in 2016 that you will certainly enjoy:

Follow the Maestro tours will follow Maestro Adam Fischer to the Ring in Vienna, a concert tour in Spain, the Ring and Die Meistersinger in Budapest, and The Haydn Festival in Eisenstadt.

Support WSWDC by mentioning that you heard about Opera in Europe here when you make your reservations!

1st Annual American Wagner Project Concert!

Our inaugural AWP Concert took place on April 26, 2015, at the National Cathedral School here in Washington, DC. The concert featured three young Wagnerian graduates of the AWP program: Lauren Decker (mezzo soprano), Gregory Frens (tenor), and Eudora Brown (soprano). They performed selections from Das RheingoldTannhäuser, Parsifal, the Wesendonck Lieder, and Die Walküre.

Left to right: AWP Artistic Director Luana DeVol, Lauren Decker, Gregory Frens, pianist Betty Bullock, Eudora Brown, and Dolora Zajick, founder of the Institute for Young Dramatic Voices, WSWDC's partner in the AWP.