Cast and Creative Team
Marinette Gomez is a young, up and coming Stage Director. For the past three years, she has acted as Assistant Director and Stage Manager for UNF Opera. Her credits in this role include the 2020 Virtual Opera Gala, 2021 Opera Scenes Program, a double-bill production of The Telephone and The Old Maid And The Thief, Dido and Aeneas, Così Fan Tutte, and Die Fledermaus. Outside of UNF, Marinette was Assistant Director for a symphonic staging of Puccini's La Bohéme with director Gregory Keller at the Jacksonville Symphony. She was an Assistant Director and Stage Manager at Chicago Summer Opera for two mainstage productions, The Magic Flute and The Tender Land. This past Spring, she was the Stage Manager at Jacksonville Symphony for a symphonic staging by Kristine McIntyre of Mozart's The Magic Flute.
As a solo director, she has directed various opera scenes for both the 2021 UNF Opera Scenes Program, and the 2020 UNF Virtual Opera Gala. ln November of 2021 she was the Director and Producer of a contemporary music recital, culminating in her staging of Samuel Barber's A Hand of Bridge.
This Summer, Marinette will be an Assistant Director Young Artist at the Glimmerglass Festival.
Brandon Michael Smith
Brandon Michael Smith has performed across the country as a conductor, keyboardist, and vocalist. Born and raised in Northeast Florida, he first trained as a vocalist with emphases in opera and musical theatre, before moving into collaborative piano and organ studies. He received a B.A. in Music from Jacksonville University with emphases in Music Education and Choral Studies, and also holds a M.M. in Conducting from Ithaca College with emphases in Musical Theatre, Opera, and Choral Music. He has taught at Florida State College of Jacksonville, Ithaca College, Jacksonville University, and has been sought after by several academic music programs as vocal coach and choral clinician. Prior to returning to Jacksonville, FL in 2018, he held a multi-year residency at The Hangar Theatre in Ithaca, NY. Brandon is the proud co-founder of Bold City Opera.
NYC: Pagliacci (Assoc. Conductor/Chorus Master/Pianist). National Tour: Wicked (Keyboard4). Regional: HMS Pinafore with First Coast Opera (Conductor), Mamma Mia! with Cape Fear Regional Theatre (Music Director), Pagliacci with Opera Ithaca (Assoc. Conductor/Chorus Master/Pianist); Xanadu (Music Director), Pride and Prejudice (MD), Chicago (Assoc. MD), A Christmas Carol (MD/Arranger/Pianist), A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (Assoc. MD) and In The Heights at the Hangar Theatre (Assoc. MD).
Since 2007, Tim has been the Canon for Music at St. John’s Cathedral in Jacksonville, Florida. As Canon, Tim’s duties include playing the Cathedral’s magnificent 1983 Austin organ for all Cathedral services, conducting the 40-voice Cathedral Choir, and presiding over an extensive music series of secular and sacred performances. Under Tim’s direction, the Cathedral Choir has sung choral residencies at Ely Cathedral (2010), Canterbury Cathedral and Westminster Abbey (2014), and the National Cathedral in Washington, D. C. (2018).
In addition to his duties at the Cathedral, Tim has been active in the Jacksonville musical community. He has served as accompanist for several local choral groups including the Orange Park Chorale and the choral department at the University of North Florida. Tim is also the classical music critic for the Florida Times Union newspaper. An active recitalist, Tim was a featured performer at the 2017 Southeastern Regional Convention of the American Guild of Organists, and at the 2018 St. Augustine Music Festival. As a pianist he recently appeared with Trio Peña in a performance of chamber music by Mendelssohn and Schumann. He graduated summa cum laude from Ithaca College, and then earned his Master of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music.
Praised for her "enticing strength and marvelous vocal character" (Arts Knoxville), Christine Alfano's powerful and sparkling voice has charmed audiences at home and abroad. Recent credits include Rosalinde in Die Fledermaus, Frankie (cover) in the world premiere of Royal Flush with Marble City Opera, Psychiatrist in A Severed Chord with Voices of the Valiant, and La Ciesca in Gianni Schicchi with both the Brancaleoni International Music Festival and the Amalfi Coast Music and Arts Festival. Other recent productions include Mefistofele (Knoxville Opera), The Elixir of Love (Florida State Opera Outreach), Alcina (Florida State Opera), Die Zauberflöte (Tennessee Opera Theatre), and La Femme Bohème (Vienna Summer Music Festival). She was a participant in the 2022 Season’s Young Professional Artists Workshop at Gulfshore Opera and is an alum of both the Knoxville Opera Studio and the Palm Beach Opera Studio. Christine received her Master of Music degree in Voice Performance from the University of Tennessee College of Music in 2022. She attended Florida State University College of Music for her undergraduate work, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in both Music and Italian. She maintains a private voice studio in Jacksonville, Florida, and is the co-founder of Bold City Opera.
Brittany Fouché Strine
Brittany Fouché, soprano, is a native of Jacksonville, Florida. She holds degrees in Voice and Opera from the University of North Florida and the University of British Columbia, respectively. Brittany is a former Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition Encouragement Award winner, New York Lyric Opera Theatre competition national finalist, and young artist with Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera Saratoga, and St. Petersburg Opera.
Praised as “enchanting” (Opera Today), Brittany’s notable roles include Susanna (Le nozze di Figaro), Adele (Die Fledermaus), Josephine (HMS Pinafore), Frasquita (Carmen), and Pamina (Die Zauberflöte). Brittany has appeared in concert with St. Petersburg Opera, Vancouver Symphony, Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, First Coast Opera, Jacksonville Children's Chorus, and Kristin Chenoweth. Last season, Brittany sang the roles of Susanna, Adele, Papagena, and First Lady (The Magic Flute), as well as a performance of John Mackey’s “Places we can no longer go” with UNF’s Wind Symphony.
La Zia Principessa
Zohaniris Rosado Torres
Zohaniris Torres, a true contralto, is known for her dark jewel-like timbre and dramatic sound. Her opera roles include La Zia Principessa in Suor Angelica, Zita in Gianni Schicchi, Arnalta in L’incoronazione di Poppea, and Elizabeth in the The Crucible. She has performed numerous recitals in Central Florida; in Ithaca, New York; Europe and South America. She has been a finalist and semifinalist in the 21st and 22nd International Lyric Singing Contest in Trujillo, Peru among others.
Her most recent performances took place in Berlin where she debuted in the role of Elizabeth in Robert Ward's The Crucible. In recent years she performed the contralto solos in the Mozart Requiem with the Central Florida Orchestra under the direction of Pasquale Valerio; she was also featured in concert at the Palacio del Gobierno in Sonora, Mexico. Additionally, she was the contralto soloist at the 45th and 44th Annual Performances of Handel’s Messiah with the Messiah Choral Society at Bob Carr Performing Arts Center, under the direction of Dr. John Sinclair.
She presently resides in Central Florida, where she has a private voice studio.
Suor Osmina (Cover, Suor Angelica)
Lyric soprano Kathleen Echols has been praised for her “high-level artistry” with a voice that is “ethereal - magical - powerful.” (Kirsten Chambers, Metropolitan Opera Soprano). Kathleen has been breaking ground in her international debut performances in the roles of Countess Almaviva (Le Nozze di Figaro), Micaëla (Carmen), Mimì (La Bohème), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), First Lady (Die Zauberflöte), and the title role in Puccini’s Suor Angelica. She has covered the roles of Liù (Turandot) with Opera Southwest and was a featured ensemble member and children’s chorus director for Opera West’s production of I Pagliacci.
Kathleen sings as section leader and soloist with the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra & Chorus. She is highly capable of delivering thrilling solo performances in oratorio, including Mozart’s Exultate, Jubilate, Rutter’s Magnificat, Poulenc’s Gloria, and Rossini’s Stabat Mater in which she sang under the baton of Metropolitan Opera conductor, Gregory Buchalter, who also praised Ms. Echols for her “phenomenal” and “unbelievably beautiful” performance.
La Suora Zelatrice (Cover, La Zia Principessa)
Hecate Smith, Mezzo Soprano, is overjoyed to be joining Bold City Opera for their Inaugural season. Hecate is a graduate of Stetson University and has been active in the North East Florida classical music community since 2008. She currently performs with the Jacksonville Symphony Chorus. You may remember Hecate from local and regional theatrical productions with Theatre Jacksonville, Players by the Sea, ABET, and the prestigious Timucua Arts Foundation in Orlando, Florida as well as NY based theater companies like Walking on Water Productions and Triphammer Arts. She was also a featured soloist with Cirque du Soleil's La Nouba in Disney Springs (Downtown Disney). Hecate currently serves as Cantor and Worship Leader at Arlington Congregational Church but has performed with the Jacksonville Chamber Cammarata, Central Florida Lyric Opera, First Coast Opera, Unitarian Universalist Church of Jacksonville, St. Cyprian's Episcopal Church, Riverside United Church of Christ, Community Presbyterian Church, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, San Jose Episcopal Church and at Church of The Good Shepherd as a member of the Good Shepherd Chamber Music Society.
Prima Conversa (Cover, Suor Genovieffa)
Rebecca graduated with a Bachelor of Music Degree in Music Education from Palm Beach Atlantic University and is attending University of North Florida for a Master’s Degree in Vocal Performance. Last Fall, Rebecca won third place in the UNF Opera Aria Competition and performed in UNF Opera’s production of Così Fan Tutte as Despina, the chambermaid. In the Spring, she played the role of Ida in Die Fledermaus. This year, she is starring as Gretel in UNF's Hansel and Gretel and will be singing the role of Prima Conversa and covering the role of Suor Genovieffa in Bold City Opera's production of Suor Angelica. She is a member of the Voices of Jacksonville and is actively teaching and performing in the Jacksonville area. She has taught Elementary Music as well as Middle and High School Theatre and taught voice and play writing at a theater camp in South Florida. She is an active member of FMEA, FVA, ACDA, FEMEA, and ACSI. Rebecca is so thankful for the opportunity to teach music and theatre while encouraging students to become better artists. She teaches private music lessons and can regularly be seen performing at special events. To learn more about Rebecca, visit her artist website below.
La Sorella Infermiera (Cover, La Maestra delle Novizie)
Falynn Davis received her Bachelor of Music Performance degree from the University of North Florida. Recent roles with the UNF Opera Theater include Prince Orlofsky from Die Fledermaus by Strauss and Dorabella from Mozart's Cosi fan tutte. Last summer, she had the pleasure of singing La Ciesca in Puccini's Gianni Schicchi with the Utah Vocal Arts Academy. She will be making her title role debut as Giulio Cesare this summer with Opera Seme in Arezzo, Italy where she will perform with the Spazio Seme Orchestra. She is delighted to join Bold City Opera this Fall to take the stage as La sorella infermiera in Puccini’s Suor Angelica and sing Sally in the outreach productions of Barber’s A Hand of Bridge.
Seconda Sorella Cercatrice, La Badessa
Mezzo soprano Jacquelyn Pileckas is a frequent performer throughout the Central Florida area, appearing in productions with Opera Tampa, Opera Orlando, and Central Florida Vocal Arts. Recently, Jacquelyn has appeared as a soloist in Opera Tampa’s productions of Spanish Nights and OutLoud and was featured as part of the Quintet in Sweeney Todd. Her other operatic credits include Pearl (The Gollum of Prague), Hansel (Hansel and Gretel), Marcello (La Femme Boheme), Despina (Cosi Fan Tutte), and Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro). In addition to opera, Jacquelyn is a section leader at the Cathedral Church of St. Luke’s in Orlando as well as a member of Central Florida Vocal Art’s Belles and Bows Ensemble. She is a frequent guest at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Gainesville, FL, having appeared as a soloist in The Mozart Requiem, The St. John’s Passion, and The Ellingboe Requiem. Jacquelyn completed a Master of Music in Vocal Performance at the University of Florida. She received a Bachelor of Music from Christopher Newport University in Newport News, VA. This summer she looks forward to appearing as 3 rd Lady in the International Summer Opera Festival of Morelia’s production of Die Zauberflöte.
Prima Sorella Cercatrice, La Maestra delle Novizie
Marilyn Sharp, soprano, is currently based in Central Florida. An active concert performer, she has served as guest soprano soloist in Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Haydn’s Creation as well as a guest artist with The Gainesville Orchestra in their 40th Anniversary Ruby Gala. Her past engagements include Zerlina in Don Giovanni with FIO ITALIA, Micaëla in Carmen, Despina in Così fan tutte, Mrs. Nordstrom in A Little Night Music, Lucy in The Telephone, and Gretel in Hansel & Gretel. In addition to classical repertoire, Sharp regularly performs in jazz, musical theatre, and rock venues demonstrating a versatile range of music genres. She completed her Masters of Music at the University of Florida.
Alexis Brook Turner
Alexis Turner obtained an undergraduate fine arts degree in Musical Theatre from Taylor University and played the roles of Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro, Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, Miss Lark/Smythe in Mary Poppins, Clara Huber in Why We Must Die So Young, and Elizabeth Law in When the Rain Stops Falling. Continuing into graduate school in pursuit of her MM in Vocal Performance, she was able to bring to life the roles of: Yvonne/Elaine in Sunday in the Park with George, Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi, and Belinda in Dido and Aeneas. She has pursued professional opportunities at Mid-Ohio Opera performing the role of Serpina in La Serva Padrona and Opera Orlando performing in The Magic Flute. Current credits include investing in schools as a Teaching Artist for the Disney Musicals in Schools program at the Dr. Phillips Center, singing for St. Luke’s Cathedral Choir in Orlando, engaging in multiple Sawtooth Productions commercials, and teaching voice lessons to students of all ages!
La Novizia (Cover, Suor Dolcina)
Kylie Humber, a resident of Jacksonville, began her singing journey in her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia. She earned her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Florida State University, and has recently earned her Master of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Tennessee.
In 2017 she made her European debut in Vienna, Austria when she sang the role of “Rodolfo” in the Vienna Summer Music Festival’s gender-bent production of Puccini’s La Bohéme. Since then, she has made her Italian debut in participating in the Brancaleoni International Music festival, and later in 2021 she returned to the Vienna Summer Music Festival as a guest artist. Her other leading roles include “Rita” in Donizetti’s Rita, “Gretel" in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel, and the role of “First Lady” Mozart’s The Magic Flute.
Rebecca Andrews has been singing since the age of seven and music has always been a part of her life in some capacity. She first sang with the Jacksonville Symphony Chorus at the age of sixteen and graduated from Douglas Anderson School of the Arts Vocal Department in 1999. Although she received multiple music awards during her junior-high and high-school years, participated in NATS, achieved superior ratings at Solo Ensemble, and offers for vocal music performance college scholarships, Rebecca decided to follow her dream of helping others. She is a proud Florida State University Master of Social Work graduate and has been a practicing MSW/LCSW in Jacksonville for many years. Despite her educational endeavors, music has always remained a pillar in her life. Rebecca has been a choir member at Saint John’s Episcopal Cathedral since 2002 and has sung every Christmas, Easter, Holy Week, and many other special services at that beautiful church for over 20 years. She performed a duet in the Jacksonville Symphony’s production of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro during their 2013-2014 music season and she continues to challenge herself musically via the arts scene here in wonderful Jacksonville!
Chorus of Sisters
Lauren "Ashley" Buckley
Ashley is excited and grateful for the opportunity to step back into the world of opera in Bold City Opera’s production of Suor Angelica. Ashley is a graduate of the Douglas Anderson Vocal Department. Her love of music led her to earn a Bachelor’s degree in Music- Education -Voice from JSU. Ashley loves inspiring young minds as a preschool music teacher.
Previous roles and shows include: Suor Angelica (Lay Sister) at Shorter College; The Mikado (Ensemble), and Beauty and the Beast (Dancing Fork) at JSU; Junie B. Jones the Musical (Junie B. Jones), Annie Get Your Gun (Ensemble), Jerry’s Girls, and Little Women (Clarissa) at Limelight Theatre; City of Angels (Angel City 4 Soprano), and Sweeney Todd (Ensemble, u/s Beggar Woman) at Players by the Sea; Bright Star (Ensemble), and Xanadu (ASM) at ABET; and Nunsense (Sister Mary Hubert) at Blue Fire Theatre. Thanks to her family and friends for all of their support!
Helena is delighted to be performing in Suor Angelica. She was most recently seen in the ensemble of First Coast Opera’s production of Die Fledermaus.
Favorite roles include Vivian Kensington in Legally Blond at the Limelight Theater, and adult Cosette in Les Miserables at the Island Theater. Recent awards include first place in both Classical and Musical Theater at the District NATS competition.
I had the fortune to be raised in a family of great singers. At the age of seven, I was first exposed to classical music—specifically opera by my mother, Ethel Mae Harmon. On a record player, she played a classically arranged rendition of "The Lord's Prayer" and instantly I knew I found my passion and purpose for life.
The remainder of my formative years, my secondary and post-secondary education was replete with listening to, studying, and performing classical music and voice. In elementary school I saw my first live opera and by the time I graduated from Douglas Anderson, I had several years of experience performing in award winning choirs, singing with chamber musicians, and competing with other young classically trained soloists. I attended FSCJ and graduated with an Associate degree in Music and a Bachelors degree in Business. While studying music, I had the occasion to study under many great vocal teachers and perform across the state of Florida and around the country. The opportunity to perform Suor Angelica, the first production with Bold City Opera, is a dream come true. I hope it will be one of many performances in the future.