Handel’s Messiah Soloists 2023
Praised for her “full, focused soprano,” Caitlin Gotimer makes her role debut as Tosca with Arizona Opera followed by her Dallas Opera debut as Fiordiligi in Mozart’s Così fan tutte in the 2022–2023 season. She joins the Santa Fe Opera Apprentice program during this summer where she will cover the role of Tosca.
Caitlin recently completed a residency with the Marion Roose Pullin Arizona Opera Studio. During the 2021–2022 season, Caitlin was seen as Micaëla in Bizet’s Carmen, Mrs. Anderssen in Sondheim’s A Little Night Music, and Fiordiligi in Mozart’s Così fan tutte. She performed a variety of scenes and arias during Arizona Opera’s Reimagined 2020–2021 season, including highlights from Madame Butterfly, La rondine, and Pagliacci.
Caitlin was a part of the Resident Artist program at Pittsburgh Opera from 2018–2020. There she appeared as the title role in Handel’s Alcina, Tink Enraught in Hilliard and Boresi’s The Last American Hammer, Older Alyce in Cipullo’s Glory Denied, Elettra in AfterWARds (Mozart’s Idomeneo Reimagined,) and Sandman/Dew Fairy in Hansel and Gretel.
Praised for her “powerful, rich, nuanced” voice and “emotionally moving” performances, Kathleen Felty is a recent alumna of the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Ryan Opera Center. Felty received attention from the Chicago Tribune for her “clarion tone” and “compelling acting” in her mainstage debut as Laura in Verdi’s Luisa Miller in 2019. She went on to perform alongside Sondra Radvanovsky in Lyric’s production of The Three Queens, which was released as an album in 2022. In Lyric Opera of Chicago’s 2021-2022 season, she performed the roles of Third Lady in Barrie Kosky’s production of The Magic Flute, Carmen, and Third Lady in The Magic Victrola; covered the role of Paula in Florencia en el Amazonas, and appeared in concert for Sunday in the Park with Lyric’s Rising Stars, Rising Stars in Concert, and as the alto soloist for Beethoven’s 9th Symphony alongside Matthew Polenzani and Eric Owens, conducted by Sir Andrew Davis. Her other notable performances in Chicago include Sole e Amore, Magic Music Around the World, Twilight Gods, the Harris Theater’s Beyond the Aria series, and multiple recitals for Chicago’s WFMT Classical Radio.
Felty is a former apprentice artist of the Santa Fe Opera, where she received the Katharine Mayer Award and covered Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos. She returned in 2022 to sing the role of Mercédès in Carmen. Also in 2022, Felty made her Des Moines Metro Opera debut as Third Lady in The Magic Flute.
She has also participated in Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute Program for Singers and, more recently, the Solti Accademia di Bel Canto fellowship program in Italy. Felty made her North Carolina Opera concert debut as Clotilde in Norma and her Dayton Opera debut in the role of Maddalena in Rigoletto.
A native of Lubbock, Texas, Felty holds Bachelor Degrees in Music and Business Administration from Texas Tech University and a Master of Music from the AJ Fletcher Opera Institute at the North Carolina School of the Arts. Her Fletcher performances include Charlotte in Werther, Angelina in La Cenerentola, Unulfo in Rodelinda, Miss Jessell in Turn of the Screw, Geneviève in Impressions de Pelléas, Dinah in Trouble in Tahiti, Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos, and Paula in Florencia en el Amazonas. Felty is a six-time District Winner of the Metropolitan Opera’s Laffont Competition and a winner of the Charlotte Opera Guild Vocal Competition and the Heafner Williams Vocal Competition.
Praised for his “agility, range, and pleasant timbre” (Opera News), tenor Philippe L’Esperance has appeared as Ernesto in Don Pasqaule and as Alessandro in Mozart’s Il re Pastore at the New England Conservatory. A recent alumnus of the Merola Opera Program, he participated in a virtual opera, “Back Home: Through the Stage Door,” where he performed selections from La Cenerentola and Die Fledermaus. Philippe has appeared as a Gaddes Festival artist and Gerdine Young Artist with the Opera Theater of Saint Louis. Most recently with the company he appeared as Lucano in Monteverdi’s The Coronation of Poppea. Other roles include Giuseppe in Verdi’s La Traviata and Jake in Ricky Ian Gordon’s The Grapes of Wrath. At the Manhattan School of Music he was featured as Matthew in Picker’s Emmeline, Prince Ramiro in Rossini’s La Cenerentola, Ferrando in Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte, Sandor Barinkay in Strauss’s Der Zigeunerbaron and Tito in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito. With the Chautauqua Institution’s Voice Program, he has appeared as Nemorino in Donizetti’s L’Elisir d’amore, Prince Karl Franz in Romberg’s The Student Prince, and Peter Quint in Britten’s The Turn of the Screw. Philippe is currently a Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Artist for Summer 2023.
In 2022, Philippe was a district winner and regional finalist in The Metropolitan Opera Laffont Competition. In concert, he appeared as the tenor soloist in Carmina Burana at New England Conservatory, the tenor soloist in Berlioz’s Lelio with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, and on the stage of Carnegie Hall as a tenor soloist in Vaughan Williams’ Serenade to Music. Philippe has also appeared with The New York Festival of Song as an Emerging Artist with NYFOS@North Fork. With NYFOS he also made his Caramoor debut as a Caramoor Rising Star.
Originally from Grafton, Massachusetts, Philippe completed his Bachelor of Music degree from The Hartt School of Music at the University of Hartford. He completed his Master of Music degree at The Manhattan School of Music, where he studied voice with Marlena Malas. He will soon be completing his Artist Diploma in Opera at The New England Conservatory, where he is studying voice with Bradley Williams.
Hailing from Stafford, Virginia, bass-baritone Cory McGee opens his 2023-2024 season performing the title role in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with Wolf Trap Opera and making his debut with Opera Philadelphia as Pietro in Verdi’s Simon Boccanegra. He will also portray Theseus in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream with Atlanta Opera, as well as Second Knight in Wagner’s Parsifal and the Imperial Commissioner in Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, both with Houston Grand Opera. He will sing Colline in a concert of Puccini’s La bohéme with Chattanooga Symphony and the bass solos in Handel’s Messiah with The Santa Fe Symphony.
As a member of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, McGee was recently seen as Johann in Massenet’s Werther, the Fifth Jew in Strauss’ Salome, Jailer in Puccini’s Tosca, and Dottore Grenvil in Verdi’s La traviata. With his “icy bass, complemented by an immense and sadistic physicality” (Harry Rose, Parterre Box), McGee also sang Caspar in Weber’s Der Freischütz with Wolf Trap Opera.
Highlights of the 2021-2022 season included Theseus in A Midsummer Night’s Dream with the Santa Fe Opera, Basilio in Rossini’s Il barbiere di Siviglia with Opera on the James, Billy in the world premiere of Thompson’s The Snowy Day, and Virgil in the world premiere of Cohen’s Turn and Burn, the latter two with Houston Grand Opera. McGee was also featured at The Houston Grand Opera’s Studio Showcase and Rienzi Recital Series, producing a full recording of Schubert’s Schwanengesang. He also made his debut with both Michigan Opera Theatre and The Florentine Opera, singing Colline in La bohème.
In the 2020-2021 season, McGee was seen in Lawrence Brownlee’s Giving Voice concert and The Snowy Day documentary, both with Houston Grand Opera; and the Sodbuster in Mazzoli’s Proving Up and Publio in Mozart’s La clemenza di Tito, both with Rice Opera Theatre. He was a finalist in both the Pasadena Vocal Competition and the Houston Grand Opera’s 32nd annual Eleanor McCollum Competition. Concerts included Handel’s Messiah with West University Baptist Church, Houston, and a return as a soloist to Unity Church of Houston for its Black History Month Celebration in February 2020.
McGee joined Santa Fe Opera as an Apprentice Artist for the 2019 season, portraying the role of the Gardener in Ruder’s The Thirteenth Child. In 2018, he was seen with Wolf Trap Opera as a Studio Artist, performing the role of La Voce in Mozart’s Idomeneo, and Ranger Nat in Wolf Trap’s commissioned children’s opera, Hanlon’s Listen, Wilhelmina! He was also a soloist in Bernstein at 100 – A Celebration, at Wolf Trap’s Filene Center.
Previous engagements include the roles of Elder Ott in Floyd’s Susannah and Sylvano in Cavalli’s La Calisto, both with Rice Opera Theatre; Figaro in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro and Pandolfe in Massenet’s Cendrillon, both with Oberlin Opera Theatre; and Leporello in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with the Arezzo Opera Festival. Praised by Palm Beach Arts Paper for his “powerful, clarion voice,” McGee has performed several roles with the Miami Music Festival: Colline in Puccini’s La bohème, Simone in Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi, Reverend John Hale in Ward’s The Crucible, Harasta in Janacek’s The Cunning Little Vixen, and Lindorf, Coppelius, and Crespel in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann.