Soprano Ying Fang Shines At Juilliard’s Vocal Arts Recital

Soprano Ying Fang Shines At Juilliard’s Vocal Arts Recital on May 9, 2016

Last Monday on the Upper West Side was a great chance to savor the beauty of the human voice – the right human voice that is as projected by one Ying Fang.  It’s amazing to see somebody like Tony Bennett when he puts the microphone down and fills a hall without amplification.  It’s easy to forget that classical singers, not even when they need to rise over an orchestra, never use microphones.  How punk rock!

Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall was the venue for the 18th annual Vocal Arts Recital starring Ying Fang accompanied by Brian Zeger on piano who is the artistic director of Juilliard’s Marcus Institute for vocal arts as well as executive director of the Metropolitan Opera’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program.  Fang is a member of that program but, as Zeger made plain when we chatted, even though he remains a mentor to her, their collaboration on stage was very much of two artists, two colleagues, as opposed to a teacher and pupil.

Ying Fang certainly is accomplished.  She won acclaim in her native China (Ningbo is her hometown) and a degree from the Shanghai Conservatory of Music before studying at Juilliard where she’s earned a masters as well as an Artist Diploma in Opera Studies.  She has been appearing internationally and in Metropolitan Opera productions for the last few seasons and her 2016 is shaping up to be on the epic side with her first opera singing in Czech and more roles with The Met and her debut planned with The New York Philharmonic.

Brian Zeger  has played with a prodigious array of great singers from Susan Graham to Marilyn Horne.   He records for the Delos label and is putting the finishing touches on an album with mezzo-soprano Jaimie Barton (who if you’ll forgive an aside, reportedly sports a nose ring… speaking of punk rock) to be released this fall.  Ying will be part of The American Ballet Theater Gala tonight!

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