Artistic Director, Viola da Gamba, Lirone, Pardessus de Viole
Early music specialist Annalisa Pappano has established herself as a staple of early music in the United States. Her wide range of instruments includes the viola da gamba (treble, tenor, bass), pardessus de viole, and the rarely played lirone. She was the founder, artistic director, and lead player of the early music ensemble Catacoustic Consort. Ms. Pappano studied at Indiana University’s Early Music Institute and the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. Her playing has been described by critics as “mercurial and enchanting” and “with a sound that is lighter than air with the airy luster of gilding on the mirrors of a rococo drawing room.”
Ms. Pappano has performed throughout Belgium, England, Ireland, Colombia, Canada, Germany, Switzerland, and the U.S. and has appeared on nationally syndicated radio and has played at the Boston, Berkeley, and Vancouver Early Music Festivals and the Ojai Music Festival. She is a member of Wildcat Viols and Atalante (England), and the recording she performed on with Atalante won a Diapason d’Or and Gramaphone Award. Annalisa has performed with numerous other ensembles including the Houston Grand Opera, Cincinnati Opera, the Cleveland Opera, the Portland Opera, the Portland Baroque Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra (San Francisco), Les Voix Baroques, Opera Atelier, the Toronto Consort, the Concord Ensemble, Cappella Artemisia (Bologna), Parthenia Viol Consort, and Consortium Carissimi. She has taught at Viola da Gamba Society of America national conclaves, the Viola da Gamba Society Pacific Northwest and Northeast chapters, the San Diego Early Music Workshop, ViolsWest, the Madison Early Music Workshop, and has been a guest lecturer at numerous universities. Ms. Pappano led the Catacoustic Consort to win the grand prize in the Naxos / Early Music America Live Recording Competition and recorded a program of Italian laments on the Naxos label, in addition to three other Catacoustic Consort recordings. Annalisa previously taught viola da gamba at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and currently resides in the Tegernsee region of Bavaria.
Soprano Melissa Harvey’s impressive stylistic versatility can be heard in operatic and concert repertoire spanning over four centuries. Ms. Harvey’s 18-19 season covers all four, with the world premiere of Korine Fujiwara’s The Flood in the role of Schatzi with Opera Columbus, Drusilla in Florentine Opera’s L’incoronazione di Poppea, roles of Echo and Zerbinetta (cover) in Cincinnati Opera’s production of Ariadne auf Naxos, a concert of French pardessus duets with Catacoustic Consort, and featured soloist in the Salisbury Symphony’s Winter Holiday is in the Aire concert. Some 20th and 21st century works performed include Alice in Unsuk Chin’s Alice in Wonderland (NYCO) and Lucinda (cover) with Gotham Chamber Opera and Opera Philadelphia for the world premiere of Nico Muhly’s Dark Sisters. Ms. Harvey’s 17-18 season included Drusilla in Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (Cincinnati Opera), two CD recordings (Ai Sospiri/Beautiful Sighs; L’art Séduisant/Seductive Charms) with Catacoustic Consort, The Messiah with the Findlay Orchestra and The Bach Society, and the soprano soloist in Kim Arnesen’s Magnificat with the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. Harvey’s prodigious activity in early music has made her invaluable to concert organizations such as Catacoustic Consort, Collegium Cincinnati, Bourbon Baroque, Cincinnati Vocal Arts Ensemble and St. Peter in Chains Cathedral. With these organizations, she has performed such works as Bach Cantatas BWV 04, 71, 106, 196, Magnificat, and Christmas Oratorio; Buxtehude (BuxWV 750), Handel (Dixit Dominus and various duets), Haydn (Lord Nelson Mass), Monteverdi (various duets), Mozart (Mass in c minor), Poulenc (Gloria), and Steffani (Stabat Mater). In 2016, she rejoined Collegium Cincinnati for Bach’s St. John Passion and Catacoustic Consort for two works of Marc-Antoine Charpentier: Le reniement de St. Pierre and the world premiere of a never-before-performed opera from 1685, La fête du Ruel.
Ms. Harvey received her BM and MM in Vocal Performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). At CCM, her operatic repertoire included Sister Constance (Dialogues of the Carmelites), Eurydice (Orpheus in the Underworld), Lucia (The Rape of Lucretia), Papagena (Die Zauberflöte), Le Rossignol (L’enfant et les Sortilèges), and Amore (L’incoronazione di Poppea). Her concert repertoire included Bach Cantatas BWV 78 & 79, the Fauré Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Haydn’s Missa Sancti Nicolai and Mass in Time of War, and Steve Reich’s Tehillim. Among the scholarships and awards Ms. Harvey has received are the Dieterle Vocal Scholarship, the Baur/Powell Scholarship, the Mercer Scholarship for language study (Freiburg, Germany), and a 2009 Encouragement Award from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Regional Auditions.