Department of Music Alumni Achieving Great Success in 2013

April 01, 2013

Thomas Richards (’10)

Department of Music Alumni Thomas Richards (’10) was one of the six winning artist of the Metropolitan Opera’s 2013 National Council Auditions at the Grand Finals Concert this March. This prestigious finals concert, which celebrated its 60th anniversary this year, is the culmination of months and months of competitions at the district, regional and national level. Nearly 1,500 singers between the ages of 20 and 30 participated in the competition, which is considered the most prestigious competition in North America for singers seeking to launch an operatic career.

Richards, a 24-year old bass-baritone, and his fellow winners were selected from ten finalists who performed arias on the Metropolitan Opera stage with the MET Orchestra, conducted by Marco Armiliato. They performed in front of an audience that included artistic directors of leading opera companies, artist managers, established opera stars, important teachers and coaches, music critics, and others who can play an influential role in the careers of young singers. Past National Council Winners include Renée Fleming, Deborah Voigt, Susan Graham, and Thomas Hampson. Each winner receives a $15,000 cash prize, as well as the prominent exposure that can launch a successful musical career.

Richards, is a native of Burnsville, Minnesota and a current Artist Diploma student at the College-Conservatory of Music (CCM) at the University of Cincinnati, where he studies opera with voice teacher William McGraw. He is a 2010 graduate of the George Washington University in the District of Columbia where he double majored in political science and music.

Louie Diller (’12)

MTV recently exclusively premiered Holychild’s music video Best Friends on their Buzzworth Bog. Holychild, the experimental pop, Los Angeles based duo, includes Department of Music Alumn Louie Diller (’12). Their debut EP, Tribes, dropped March 18.

Ben Thornewill, and Tommy Siegel and Jesse Kristin (’07)

Department of Music Alumni Ben Thornewill, Tommy Siegel and Jesse Kristin, aka Jukebox the Ghost, returned to DC this March to perform at the 9:30 Club as part of their first headlining tour. The sold out concert was originally the closing night of the Indie/Pop/Rock band’s tour, but they have since added additional tour dates. Jukebox the Ghost’s latest CD, Safe Travels, is available for sale on iTunes, Amazon, and Yep Roc Store.