By DAVE McMILLION
8:34 PM EDT, March 17, 2013
The excitement of four young vocalists was injected into a Sunday performance of the Maryland Symphony Orchestra as the group performed works from Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Giuseppe Verdi and others.
The vocalists were from the Curtis Opera Theatre, which is the performing entity of the Curtis Institute of Music’s Vocal Studies Department.
Sarah Shafer and Sean Michael Plumb got things started as the orchestra performed works from Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro.”
MSO Music Director Elizabeth Schulze said “The Marriage of Figaro” is about a count who decides to impose a feudal lord’s right to check out a fiancée before her marriage. Figaro becomes upset over the situation and comes up with a plan to show the count is a philanderer, Schulze said.
Shafer, Plumb and vocalist Lauren Eberwein brought the story to life in their performances, drawing positive reactions from the crowd.
“It’s so exciting to have young voices,” Schulze told spectators.
Shafer came to music growing up in a family of musicians in State College, Pa. Shafer, who has performed with the San Francisco Opera, said recently that she could not remember a time when she was not singing.
Plumb has appeared in more than 35 professional and amateur operas, musicals and plays. In 2009, Plumb was featured on the National Public Radio program “From the Top.”
Eberwein, a 19-year-old mezzo-soprano, is in her second year of study at Curtis.
The fourth vocalist was Christopher Tiesi, who is completing his Master of Music in Opera Degree at Curtis.
Audience members were briefed on coming shows this year and next. Among the shows are the annual Salute to Independence at Antietam National Battlefield on July 6, the Home for the Holidays shows on Dec. 7 and Dec. 8, and Back to Back: The Music of Billy Joel and Elton John on March 28, 2014.