Fisher Center at Bard Conservatory
Brad Smoak and Alexandra Loutsion
No soldier is complete without massive amounts of glitter

One of the most exciting and unpredictable moments in this business is when a singer withdraws from a gig and suddenly the production finds itself in need of someone who is available - and prepared - to sing a role on very short notice. For the semi-staged run of Salome, my agent contacted me and asked if I could begin rehearsals "in two days" to sing the minor role of Erster Soldat (1st Soldier). Talk about short notice!

This production was originally planned to take place two years ago, and was unfortunately (like many others) put on hold due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Strauss's Salome is a piece not often undertaken by colleges/universities, mainly due to the difficulty of the lead vocal roles. Bard Conservatory hired in a cast of professional singers to allow their orchestral students the unique chance to perform this iconic work while still in school, and I was thrilled to help give them that opportunity.

The performances were well-attended by a live audience, and the run was also live-streamed online. Click this link to watch the matinee performance from March 20, 2022.

The cast for this Salome was incredible, including stalwarts of the dramatic stage like tenor Jay Hunter Morris as Herod, mezzo Katharine Goeldner as Herodias, and soprano Alexandra Loutsion making her role debut as Salome in striking fashion. Directed by R.B. Schlather, conducted by Leon Botstein.