NFSO Stars of Tomorrow

Mozart’s Requiem and Stars of Tomorrow

April 13, 2019 @ 7:30 pm


Devin Patrick Hughes, conductor

Join the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra for a farewell letter from the greatest composer of all time featuring Northwest Florida Symphony Chorale. The mystery surrounding Mozart’s death remains an enigmatic puzzle to this day. Answers can only be found in his Requiem Mass, which he left for us as an inspirational message of hope and spiritual fulfillment. This season finale concert spotlights the amazing talents of the youth Concerto Competition winners of the NFSO Guild-sponsored competition.

Join us for at 6:30 p.m. for a pre-concert talk with Maestro Devin Patrick Hughes in the Mainstage Theater. Limited seating available. Attendees must have concert ticket.

This event is made possible by the generous sponsorship of McGovern, O’Dell & Associates Wealth Management Group.

Performance Pieces

  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Requiem, K. 626
    • Sheila Dunn, Soprano
    • Hanan Tarabay, Alto
    • Roderick George, Tenor
    • Corey McKern, Baritone
    • Northwest Florida Symphony Chorale
      • Lois Henry, Conductor
    • Niceville High School Singers
      • Michael Dye, Conductor
  • Jean Sibelius, Concerto in D minor, Op. 47: Allegro Moderato
    • Robin Tozzie, Violin
  • Franz Joseph Haydn, Piano Concerto in D major: Vivace
    • Parker Wolf, Piano
  • Antonín Dvořák, Cello Concerto in B minor, Op. 104: Finale, Allegro moderato
    • Will Taylor, Cello

Guest Performers

Concerto Winners

This year’s Concerto Competition winners and NFSO guest musicians are Parker Wolf (Piano, Junior Division), Will Taylor (Cello, Senior Division), and Robin Tozzie (Violin, College Division). For more information on the youth musicians, please visit the Concerto Competition winners’ profile page.

Dr. Sheila Dunn, Soprano

Sheila Dunn Headshot

Dr. Sheila Dunn, Soprano, is an Associate Professor of Voice and Chair of the Department of Music at the University of West Florida where she teaches applied voice, vocal pedagogy, vocal literature, opera workshop and women in popular music.  She maintains an active performing career particularly in opera and as a concert artist and recitalist.  In March of 2019, she performed a solo vocal recital at the American Cathedral in Paris on the Les Dimanches Musicaux concert series. She has performed with Chautauqua Opera, Nevada Opera, Lake George Opera, Pensacola Opera, Pensacola Symphony Orchestra and the Indianapolis Symphony among other organizations.

She has earned praise for her operatic performances in such roles as Kitty Hart (Dead Man Walking), Beth (Little Women), Adele (Die Fledermaus), Blonda (Abduction from the Seraglio), Costance (Les Dialogues des Carmélites), Despina (Cosí fan tutte), Eurydice (Orpheus in the Underworld), Johanna (Sweeney Todd), Mabel (The Pirates of Penzance), and Susanna (Le Nozze di Figaro).  Her performance repertoire is diverse including works from Handel and Mozart to Wolf and Poulenc.  She is equally comfortable in the classics of musical theater and pops and has a special interest in the music of the Tin Pan Alley Era.

Dr. Dunn holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Oberlin Conservatory of Music and both a Master and Doctor of Music in Vocal Performance from the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music.
Hanan Tarabay, Alto Soloist for Mozart's Requiem for a Dream Concert

Hanan Tarabay, Alto

Hanan is a mezzo soprano from Pensacola, Florida.  After graduating from the Interlochen Arts Academy in Michigan, Hanan attended the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia on a merit based full tuition scholarship, where she studied voice and opera with Marlena Malas and Mikael Eliasen.  Performance credits for the Curtis Opera Theatre include Alcina (Bradamante), The Rape of Lucretia (Lucretia), Cosi fan tutte (Dorabella), The death of Klinghoffer (Austrian Woman), The Consul (Vera Boronel), L’incoronazione di Poppea (La Fortuna) and Le Nozze di Figaro (Barbarina) among others.

Hanan has also sung roles for Palm Beach Opera (Third Lady in The Magic Flute), Pensacola Opera (Meg in Little Women, Giovanna in Rigoletto and Beggar Woman in Sweeney Todd), Chautauqua Institute Opera Festival (Third Lady in The Magic Flute, Carmen in Carmen, Gianetta in L’elixir d’amore) and roles at the Interlochen Arts Academy. Hanan sang Anita in West Side Story in a gala concert performance with the Opera Orchestra of the Teatro Regio in Turin, Italy.

Hanan also sang the mezzo-soprano solo in Mendelssohn’s Midsummer Night’s Dream with the Pensacola Symphony. She has been presented in concert at the Spoleto Festival dei due Mondi in Italy and in gala performances in the Netherlands and Ireland. Additionally, she enjoys oratorio and chamber music and has performed a variety of works with the Curtis Chamber Orchestra and the Chautauqua Institute Chamber Group. Hanan has performed the Messiah with many choral societies among other works. Hanan also taught voice lessons at the Chautauqua Institute for three summers. Hanan maintains a private studio and also serves as the Assistant Director for the Pensacola Children’s Chorus. She is also a wife and mother to Andrew and Julia.

Roderick George, Tenor

Roderick George, NFSO Guest Concert Soloist for Mozart's Requiem and Stars of Tomorrow

Tenor Roderick George enjoys a distinguished career as a performing artist and a vocal music educator. Regularly engaged as a concert soloist in major orchestral and oratorio works, he made his New York Lincoln Center debut as the tenor soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the National Chorale and he was recently a featured soloist for the 2019 Gotham Sings Choral Festival and Ensemble Showcase at Carnegie Hall. Other recent concert performances have included Mozart Requiem with the Pensacola Symphony, Carmina Burana with the Huntsville Symphony, Messiah with the El Paso Choral Society and Bach Magnificat and Messiah with the Alabama Symphony Orchestra.  His 2018/19 engagements include a return to the Alabama Symphony for Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Mozart Requiem with the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra and Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass with the Shoals Symphony.

An international artist, he has performed throughout Russia, including solo concert appearances with the Orpheus Radio Symphony Orchestra and the Krasnoyarsk Philharmonic Orchestra. George has also made appearances at various prestigious international music festivals and venues including Festival Internacional de Musica Sacra in Ecuador, La Folle Journée Festival in France, Spain’s Festival Internacional de la Porta Ferrada and Festival Internacional de Santander, the Cayman Arts Festival of the Grand Cayman Islands, Notre-Dame Cathedral and American Cathedral in Paris, Lensoveta Palace of Culture in St. Petersburg, Russia, the Royal Dublin Society and Wexford Opera House of Ireland, and the Spaso House of the United States Embassy in Moscow.  He has performed a diversity of leading lyric tenor opera roles including recent role debuts as the Leader in Kurt Weill’s Lost in the Stars with Union Avenue Opera, St. Louis and Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore with Opera Birmingham.

Lauded for his poignant interpretations of the American Negro spiritual, George has recorded and toured extensively, including multiple concert tours throughout the U.S., Spain, France, Ireland and South America, as a featured soloist with the internationally acclaimed American Spiritual Ensemble.  A Recipient of the College of Fine Arts Distinguished Teacher Award, he is professor and coordinator of vocal studies in the Department of Music at the University of Montevallo (AL). Among his credentials are the doctorate in voice performance from The Florida State University College of Music and the master’s degree in opera and musical theater from the School of Music at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He received advanced training in opera at the American Institute of Musical Studies in Graz, Austria.

Corey McKern, Baritone

Corey McKern, Baritone Soloist - Mozart's Requiem

Award-winning baritone Corey McKern continuously earns critical acclaim and accolades in every appearance he makes. Of his performance as Figaro inIl barbiere di Siviglia, critics hailed: “Corey McKern… has all the goods to rise to star stature – timing, stamina, vocal heft and an easy-going stage presence – especially telling in Figaro’s signature aria, ‘Largo al factotum della citta.’” This season’s engagements include the role of Older Thompson in Glory Denied with Opera Birmingham and performances as a soloist in Carmina Burana with Missoula Symphony, Handel’s Messiah with the Alabama Symphony, and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Tallahassee Symphony.  He will also return to the Florentine Opera for a concert of “Opera’s Greatest Hits.”

Of his performance in La bohème, the Santa Fe New Mexican said, “Corey McKern’s resolute, robust-voiced and rambunctious Marcello, a perfect picture of a wannabe Parisian painter, was one of the best I’ve ever heard.” Mr. McKern garners attention at leading opera houses for his charming and dynamic portrayals of his signature roles: Marcello in La bohème in his Asian début at Opera Hong Kong, Santa Fe Opera, Florentine Opera of Milwaukee, Nashville Opera, and Opera Grand Rapids; Figaro in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Nashville Opera and Opera Birmingham; the Count in Le nozze di Figaro with Nashville Opera, Opera Cleveland, Opera Columbus, Michigan Opera Theatre, Tulsa Opera, Opera Birmingham, and Syracuse Opera; Gabriel von Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus with Nashville Opera and Florentine Opera; Papageno in Die Zauberflöte with Opera Omaha, Arizona Opera, Opera Birmingham, and Tulsa Opera; as Silvio in Pagliacci with Austin Lyric Opera, Arizona Opera, Opera Birmingham, and Central City Opera.

Additional favorite engagements include a role début as Dandini in La Cenerentola with Nashville Opera; Sharpless in Madama Butterfly with Atlanta Opera; Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor with Opera Saratoga; Olin Blitch in Susannah with Louisiana Opera; Anthony in Sweeney Todd and Danilo in The Merry Widow with Florentine Opera and Pensacola Opera; King Henry II in Becket with Long Island Masterworks; Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles with Syracuse Opera and Florida Grand Opera; the Count/Rudolf in Schreker’s Der ferne Klang in his début with Bard SummerScape Opera; Harlequin in Ariadne auf Naxos and Macheath in The Threepenny Opera at Indianapolis Opera; Valentin in Faust with Opera Carolina; Pish-Tush in The Mikado with Arizona Opera; Don Quichote in Man of La Mancha with Pensacola Opera; and Pilot in Rachel Porter’s operatic adaptation of The Little Prince at Tulsa Opera.

His consistency and professionalism have made him a favorite at several companies including Santa Fe Opera where he performed Masetto in Don Giovanni, Pallante in Agrippina, Peggy Bond Church’s adaptation of the children’s story Shoes for the Santo Niño, the 1st Shepherd in Strauss’ Daphne, Valentin in Faust, Belcore in L’elisir d’amore, and as a cover for the title role in Wozzeck; Opera Birmingham as Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor, Escamillo in Carmen, Ping in Turandot, and Ambroise Thomas’ Hamlet; and Opera Omaha as John Brooke in Little Women, Ping in Turandot, and Slook in Rossini’s farcical comedy La cambiale di matrimonio.

An active concert performer, Mr. McKern made his début with the St. Louis Symphony performing Wozzeck and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, which he also performed with Seattle Symphony and Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra; made his Carnegie Hall début in the Fauré Requiem; and returned to the prestigious concert hall for John Rutter’s Mass of the Children and Mozart’s Requiem. Other recent concert engagements include Mahler’s Rückert-Lieder with the Missoula Symphony; Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem and a concert of operetta highlights with the Indianapolis Symphony; performances with the New Choral Society in Beethoven’s Mass in C Major, Brahms’ Requiem, and Händel’s Messiah, which he also performed with Phoenix Symphony; Orff’s Carmina Burana with the Yakima Symphony Orchestra, the San Juan Symphony in Colorado, New Choral Society, the Phoenix Symphony, Alabama Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, Asheville Symphony, and in his début with Seattle Symphony; and a concert of arias and duets with San Juan Symphony.