September 21st, 2013
Tempe Center for the Arts, Studio
Timothy Verville, Conductor
Mozart Symphony 40
Mahler Des Knaben Wunderhorn
Alexis Hazell, Mezzo-Soprano
Earl Hazell, Bass-Baritone
$20 General Admission
About the Guest Artists
Earl Hazell, Basso Cantante and Executive Director of Jazzoperetry®, Inc. is a performing artist developing a multi-faceted career through the embrace of opera, literature and modern jazz. A native New Yorker, Hazell has performed with the New York Philharmonic numerous times, including in The One Hundredth Anniversary of Carnegie Hall under James Levine. He has also performed a variety of roles in numerous productions of the Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess throughout Continental Europe, including in the Semperoper of Dresden; Centro Cultural de Belem of Lisbon; Theatre Carre, Amsterdam; the Royal Albert Hall of London and the Teatro dell’Opera of Rome. Earl has debuted with Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Tulsa Opera, Phoenix Opera and Arizona Opera, where he has covered and performed roles including Ramphis and Amonasro in Verdi’s Aida; Jim, Jake and Crown of Porgy and Bess; Il Contadino in Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci; Vecchio Zingaro in Verdi’s Il Trovatore; Sarastro and the Speaker of Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte; Colline of Puccini’s La Boheme and Zuniga of Bizet’s Carmen. Earl lives in Tempe, AZ with his wife, dramatic mezzo-soprano Alexis Davis Hazell, with whom he performs nationwide in their production company’s flagship recital series Earl & Alexis: AMERICAN SONGS.
Dramatic Mezzo-soprano and Philadelphia native Alexis Davis Hazell is emerging as an active performer on the international opera stage. Her interpretations of Madame Flora (Menotti’s The Medium), Arsamene (Handel’s Xerxes), and Mme. De Croissy (Poulenc’sDialogues of the Carmelites) have earned her accolades for the size and quality of her instrument, the lyrical musicality of her technique, and the dramatic intensity she brings to the development of character.
Fluent in French, possessing a working knowledge of Russian and a magna cum laude graduate with a Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Temple University in Philadelphia, Mrs. Davis Hazell is completing a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Vocal Performance at Arizona State University. During previous graduate work at ASU she made special study of vocal disorders & rehabilitation, along with the historical performance practices of the Baroque Era. Her current research is geared toward developing curricula for Russian lyric diction studies tailored to young American singers, based on an innovative application of the principles of clinical phonetics. Her vision is to bring about a new appreciation of the 19th and 20th century Russian art song traditions in America.
The stage, however, continues to be the primary focus of Alexis’ emerging career. After appearing as La Zia in the 2006-2007 Arizona Opera season production of Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, she performed in the Utah Festival Opera productions of Verdi’s Il Trovatoreand the Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess in July, 2007. She appeared in Phoenix Opera’s inaugural production of La Boheme in December 2007 as well as Arizona Opera’s La Traviata in April, 2008.
Internationally, Alexis worked with the Living Arts, Inc. European tour of Porgy and Bess throughout Russia, Poland, Greece, Latvia and Estonia in June and July 2008. These critically acclaimed performances were in collaboration with the Mikhailovsky Opera in St. Petersburg, the Moscow Philharmonic, and the Polish National Opera of Warsaw in June, leading to her debut in the principal role Maria at the Kuressaare Operadays Festival in Estonia.
Her success with Living Arts, Inc. led to another European tour of Porgy and Bess with the New York Harlem Theatre, in Germany and Switzerland. Under the leadership of Maestros William Barkhymer, Richard Cordova and Kelly Kuo, she performed every role for her voice type—the featured role Strawberry Woman at Theatre 11 in Zurich, the comprimario role Lily at the Hamburg State Opera, and the principal role of Maria at the Festspielhaus of Baden-Baden—during August and September of 2008.
In 2009 her relationship with the Gershwins’ masterpiece continued with three notable debuts: San Francisco Opera (the John de Main/Francesca Zambello production), the Dresden SemperOper, and the Deutsch Oper am Rhein in Dusseldorf.
Alexis’ work regionally has included, the Mother in a production of Amahl and the Night Visitors in Paradise Valley, 2008; the cover to Amneris in the Phoenix Opera Aida in 2009; mezzo soloist in the Rossini Stabat Mater at Valley Presbyterian Church in 2009; and the cover to Viktoria Vizin for the title role in Phoenix Opera’s 2009 production of Carmen.
In addition to a busy concert schedule, regional appearances for Alexis in the 2010 through 2013 seasons include La Badessa in Suor Angelica with the Southern Arizona Symphony; Dritte Dame in the Phoenix Opera production of Die Zauberflöte; Annina in the Phoenix Opera production of La Traviata; the cover to Lori Phillips as Santuzza in the Arizona Opera production of Cavalleria Rusticana; the cover to Daveda Karanas as Amneris in the recent