Category Archives: Uncategorized

Party with Puccini – May 1, 2022

The Puccini Society of Dallas & UNT College of Music Present:

Party with Puccini at the Magnificent Estate of Harlan Crow

Sunday, May 1, at 2:30 PM

Tickets $75/person

Valet Parking | Refreshments

Puccini Friends;

What a wonderful event we had on May 1st!

We were forced by the pandemic to postpone this program twice, so I was delighted to arrive on a beautiful spring day to finally present this concert by the talented young artists from UNT. We can all thank Jonathan Eaton for the delightful program with clever staging and gifted singers! We certainly got our Puccini ”fix”! And once again we can all thank Mr. and Mrs. Crow for their generous and gracious hospitality. Their home is probably the most extraordinary home in Dallas. I think everyone appreciates their collection of historic American treasures along with their art and antiques. There is so much to be admired. Perhaps a few of us will want to thank them personally with a note.

UNT School of Music Dean, John Richmond, assured me they are happy to collaborate with us in the future. And I think we will plan to feature some of these fine singers on programs next year. Several of them told me they would be happy to sing for us again.

I was very happy that members of the Opera and Symphony Guilds joined us, contributing to a capacity crowd. Several members of the DSO Guild were delighted to learn about us and will probably join us again or perhaps become members.

As always, Jana and Mac Irwin get a lot of credit for their preparation for our event. Jana sent invitations and received reservations and then emailed confirmations which was a big undertaking since they were away with family in Colorado the week prior to our program. Patsy and Bob Brooks were also on the planning committee, working with the caterer and providing the wine. Both these couples get credit for all our events and receptions. We are all so grateful to them for their ongoing work on behalf of the Puccini Society.

Our DSO friend David Stubblefield took lots of great pictures which I’ll share and ask pur webmaster, Ed Flaspoehler, to post on our web site. I know others took some good photos too, and I am happy to share those with everyone if you send them to me.

Thank you for your wonderful support of yesterday’s event!

Marilyn Halla, President
Puccini Society of Dallas

Photo Gallery

Photos by David Stubblefield

Josefina Maldonado Dec 4, 2021

Puccini Society of Dallas presents

Josefina Maldonado, Mezzo-soprano

Josefina Maldonado
Mezzo Soprano

Saturday, December 4, 2021 at 3:00 P.M.

Members $25 Guests $35
Valet Parking Provided

RSVP by Dec 1 to
PucciniSociety@gmail.com

Pay at Door or mail check to
Puccini Society
PO Box 25105,
Dallas, TX 75225

For credit card charges, please contact
Jana at 817-999-5509

Josefina Maldonado, Mezzo-soprano

Emerging Dallas-born artist, Josefina Maldonado has been critically acclaimed by The Texas Classical Review and Theater Jones as ‘vocally superb’ with a ‘remarkably rich timbre’. Ms. Maldonado was a young artist with The Dallas Opera Outreach Program in the role(s) of Veronica/Dr. Miracle and Dorabella/ Così Fan Tutte, for Bremen Town Musicians.

For her European debut, Ms. Maldonado was a principle artist in two modern world premieres of serenatas by Johannes Schmelzer; Le veglie ossequiose and Die sieben Alter stimmen zusammen, for the Olomouc’s Baroque Festival held in the Czech Republic.

Ms. Maldonado holds a B.M. from the University of North Texas where she was a frequently featured soloist alongside the UNT Symphony Orchestra. Her major roles with UNT Opera included Dorabella/Così Fan Tutte, Ruggiero/Alcina, Cherubino/Le nozze di Figaro, Siébel/Faust and Mother Marie/Dialogues of the Carmelites.


Photo Gallery

Schollmaier Scholars – November 13, 2021

The Puccini Society of Dallas presents

AN AFTERNOON OF PUCCINI AND OTHER OPERA DELIGHTS

with the Foote Foundation Schollmaier Scholars and graduate students of

BARBARA HILL MOORE

Presented in memory of:
Cecile Bonte, Eleanor Krebs, Marigny Lanier, Ed Lynch, and Jody Reed

Saturday, November 13, 2021

3:00 p.m.

Members $30             Guests $35

Please RSVP to PucciniSociety@gmail.com by Nov. 10


Puccini Friends

What a big group we had yesterday to enjoy Barbara Hill-Moore’s wonderful students.  Some of these singers are young artists to watch!  Prosper is really getting some wonderful opportunities with both Dallas and Ft. Worth Operas.  Others may well be singers to watch in the future.  

Our fall Puccini event featuring the students of Barbara Hill Moore, Senior Associate Dean, SMU. Barbara sponsors these international students through the Foote Foundation. It was an amazing event. So good to be meeting in person again.
Photo by Mac Irwin

To enjoy their beautiful singing in the stunning surroundings of Bill Cornog’s home was a double pleasure; and what a gracious and accommodating host he is.  All in all the afternoon was a lovely tribute to our past members Cecile Bonte, Eleanor Krebs, Marigny Lanier, Ed Lynch and Jody Reed. They were each valued and loved members of the Puccini Society.

A proud teacher: Barbara Hill Moore.
Photos by Josephine Dewaal

To enjoy their beautiful singing in the stunning surroundings of Bill Cornog’s home was a double pleasure; and what a gracious and accommodating host he is.  All in all the afternoon was a lovely tribute to our past members Cecile Bonte, Eleanor Krebs, Marigny Lanier, Ed Lynch and Jody Reed. They were each valued and loved members of the Puccini Society.

We continue to welcome new members to our group:  Mary Lou Alford has just joined us along with a number of others who were introduced at our Sept. meeting. Mary Lou is delighted to find that she has a number of friends and acquaintances in our group. New members this fall include:  Mary Lou Alford, John Shriner, Anna Morini, Yvonne Sage, Carl Schieffer, Dona and Michael Watson, and Mary Ellen Winborn. Also Brian Hackfeld, Joey Meirtschin, and Mark Landson. Welcome to all! Guest are always welcome and we were happy to have several yesterday as well.

I hope everyone will remember that these beautiful receptions are spearheaded by Mac Irwin and Patsy Brooks.  Special thanks to Rosemary O’Neill and Josephine DeWaal for their special home baked Irish Tea Bread and Stollen.  We appreciate them all so much!  Bob Brooks makes sure we all have a wine of choice and graciously serves as bartender.  Our whole Board is a great team as each member reliably does their job.  Thanks to Jana Irwin for keeping our reservations and checking everyone in.  The Tobys sent membership renewals and many have responded.  You can still renew and now Jana can take your payment via credit card (817-999-5509) or a check to P.O. Box 25105, Dallas, 75225. Laurie Pan took very nice pictures which will be posted on our web site. Many thanks to all.

Yesterday’s guest Robin Green will host our Dec. 4 program in her lovely home.  Josefina Maldonado, soprano will present our program.  We had Josefina scheduled to sing for us just as we were asked to curtail our in-person meetings, and I’m really delighted to reschedule her now.  She is a very accomplished young singer whom we will be thrilled to finally hear. Invitations will be sent out soon with meeting details.
Have a Happy and Safe Thanksgiving,

Marilyn Halla

Event Photos by Laurie Pan

Julie Liston Johnson – December 14, 2019

The Puccini Society of Dallas presents

Julie Liston Johnson, soprano
Molly Fillmore, mezzo soprano
with Szu-Ying Huang, pianist

At the home of

Linda and Tom Smith
6614 Forestshire Drive
Dallas, Texas 75230

December 14, 2019, 3:00 P.M.

Members $25 – Guests $30 – Valet Parking

Please RSVP to

P.O. Box 25105
Dallas, Texas 75225
or
puccinisociety @ aol.com

Puccini Friends;

I want to share with you my enthusiasm for our upcoming program next Saturday at the home of Linda and Tom Smith.

Linda suggested we invite soprano Julie Liston Johnson to perform, and when I contacted her she was happy to accept our invitation. She received her Master of Music degree from the Juilliard School where she held a teaching fellowship and is currently on the voice faculty of the University of Texas at Arlington while also finishing her DMA at the University of North Texas. She has sung solos at Carnegie Hall, Alice Tully Hall, Trinity Church Wall Street as well as prestigious halls in Italy and England. A frequent performer in the Metroplex, many of you may have heard her performances. Favorite opera roles include Donna Anna, Dido, and Madama Butterfly as well as concert performances of The Queen of the Night’s vengeance aria and Gilda in Rigoletto. She lives in Dallas with her husband Bart Johnson and their daughter Ava Grace.

Julie has invited mezzo soprano Molly Fillmore to join her for our program. Molly made her Metropolitan Opera debut as Helmwige in Die Walkure, conducted by James Levine. During her seven seasons at the Met she also appeared in Philip Glass’ Satyaraha; both of these were broadcast worldwide in movie theaters and on PBS television. She sang over 25 roles at the Cologne Opera, performed title roles with San Francisco Opera, and Arizona Opera as well as appearances with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, at Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Kennedy Center, Spoleto Festival and Tanglewood Festival. She is now Chair of the Division of Vocal Studies and Professor of Voice at the University of North Texas College of Music.

Taiwanese pianist Szu-Ying Huang will perform with Julie and Molly. She has performed extensively as soloist and chamber musician in major cities throughout the United States, Canada, Austria, China and Taiwan. She will soon receive her Doctor of Musical Arts degree in piano performance at the University of North Texas where she held assistantships in opera accompanying, collaborative piano and choral accompanying.

This promises to be a truly memorable program as well as a festive holiday celebration. Linda and Tom live at 6614 Forestshire Dr., 75230 and we meet at 3:00 p.m. If you haven’t replied please do so now in order for us to have adequate seating. I’ll look forward to seeing you there!

Marilyn Halla

Puccini Society 2019/2020 Season

Hello friends!  We’re definitely at the end of summer this weekend, and most groups are well into their plans for the coming year.  While I was in Santa Fe I contacted several singers whom we want to have this year, and whom I had talked with previously.  It looks like another good year of programs.  I sent out our dates and the singers made their choices. We can still book one more program if anyone has suggestions.

This is what it looks like so far:

  • Oct. 19;  Francisco Bedoy, tenor
  • Nov. 16; Rachel Davies, mezzo
  • Dec. 14; Julie Johnson, mezzo at the home of Linda and Tom Smith
  • Jan. 18 or 25; Mary Dibbern with Gabby Gifford and Malcom Payne, baritone
  • Feb. 15 or March 21; hopefully Lauren McNeese, sop. singing Strauss songs
  • April 18; Josefina Maldonado, soprano

I look forward to seeing everyone again soon, and welcome any suggestions. 

I hope everyone has had a good summer,

Marilyn Halla

Wind Song Trio – January 13, 2019

The Puccini Society of Dallas Presents

The Wind Song Trio
Haley Sicking, Soprano,
Robin Korevaar, Clarinet, and
Jonathan Tsay, Piano

Sunday, January 13, 2019, 3:00PM

Hosted by Bill and Leslie Cornog
6812 Hunter’s Glen Road
Dallas, TX 75205

Valet Parking
Guests $30 – Members $25

R.S.V.P. to Bettie Francis
P.O. Box 25105
Dallas, TX 75225 or
puccinisociety @ aol.com
http://www.puccinidallas.com

Haley Sicking

Puccini Friends:  Happy New Year!  We begin the new year with a program presented by the Wind Song Trio on Sunday ( not the usual Sat.) afternoon, Jan. 13.  You may recall this trio presented our program a few years back at the home of Faye Briggs and were enthusiastically received by all.

Haley Sicking, soprano recently sang on the program given in conjunction with the Dallas Opera’s Women Conductors Symposium with the Dallas Opera Orchestra under the direction of Emmanuel Villaume.  She will sing for us along with Robin Korevaar, clarinet and Jonathan Tsay, piano.  This fine professional trio has presented various programs throughout the community, among which is the Basically Beethoven summer series at the Moody Performance Hall.

Our program is given in memory of our well remembered member, Gus Hoehn.  Gus was a music enthusiast and life long clarinet player in addition to being a successful engineer.  Many of Gus’ friends will join us to remember and honor him.

We meet at the lovely, art filled home of Bill and Leslie Cornog, 6— Hunter’s Glen, 75205, at our regular 3:00 time.  I hope to see you there!

Marilyn Halla

2018-19 Programs

PUCCINI SOCIETY PROGRAMS 2018-19

  • Sept. 22:
    Jackie Lengfelder, soprano and Ted Carlson, baritone, Mary Dibbern, pianist
    Linda and Tom Smith hosts
  • Oct. 13:
    Students of Barbara Hill Moore
    Hosted by Antony and Katherine Francis
  • Nov. 17:
    Tamora Wood, mezzo soprano and Darla Mattern, soprano
    Tommy DeSalvo, pianist
    Eleanor Krebs, host
  • Dec. 8:
    Courtney Stancil, soprano and Charles Karanja, tenor,
    Mary Dibbern, pianist
    Nancy Ashley, hostess
  • January date TBA:
    Wind Song Trio
    Gus Hoehn Memorial Concert
  • Feb. 10:
    Opera in Concert Gala
    Edward Crafts, baritone
    Barbara Bradfield, hostess
  • Feb. 23:
    Stephen Dubberly lecture on Puccini’s “Manon Lescot”
    Location TBA
  • May:
    Puccini Party
    Ed Flaspoehler performs Gregory Isaacs’ flute sonata
    Bettie Francis, hostess

Programs for 2015-2016

The Puccini Society of Dallas – Programs for 2015-2016

Portrait of Giacomo Puccini by Anne Cushing Ganz

Portrait of Giacomo Puccini by Anne Cushing Ganz

Our Puccini Society board met recently to work on plans for the coming year.

Our new season will begin October 10 at Enika and Richard Schulze’s lovely home, with an event announcing the release of Jared Schwartz’s new CD by Toccata Classics/London of Gabriel Faure’s Songs for Bass Voice and Piano.  Accompanying Jared on the CD is Roy Howat, Scottish pianist and musicologist, who is known worldwide for his concerts, broadcasts and lectures.  Our own renowned Mary Dibbern is Artistic Director for the album, which is scheduled to be released in late September.

In addition, we will feature Mary Dibbern’s latest book, “Massenet and his Letters,” by Pendragon Press.  The original book of the composer’s letters was published in French in 2001 by his descendant, Ann Massenet.  Mary has translated the book into English.  It features letters and documents from the composer’s son-in-law and wife, whose long and frequent spa cures forced Massenet to experience unbearable solitude.  Our gathering will celebrate French composers and art songs.

On March 19 we are planning a joint meeting with The Wagner Society of Dallas, featuring noted opera lecturer Desiree Mays from Santa Fe.  Many of you may have attended her pre-performance lectures during The Santa Fe Opera season.  In addition, Ms. Mays gives pre-performance lectures at The Metropolitan Opera and The San Francisco Opera and leads opera tours for Act I Travel.  She also publishes “Opera Unveiled” each spring, giving an overview and synopsis of The Santa Fe Opera season.

Ms. Mays has prepared a new lecture on the recently discovered story of the actual Madam Butterfly and her real son.  She will lecture on this at The Metropolitan Opera later in March.  Our program will feature her Puccini lecture followed by our usual reception and then a lecture, “Wagner’s Women,” which she presented to The Wagner Society in San Francisco in 2014 to great acclaim.  Everyone is welcome to attend both lectures.

On April 3 we will co-sponsor a very special event with The Dallas Opera Guild and The Dallas Theater Center Guild.  It will be at the home of Kathy and Harlan Crow in their Presidential Library and concert hall.  With The Dallas Opera production of “Show Boat” just ready to open, our program will compare Broadway musicals with opera.  The Dallas Theater Center is presenting two musicals this season:  “Moonshine” and “Dream Girls”.  Broadway pianist and conductor David Geist of Santa Fe will present a program, which he wrote for The Santa Fe Opera Guild last year.  Stay tuned for details and information on this very special collaboration.

Of course, we will also present outstanding singers, who will sing Puccini arias in our other programs this season.  One of these programs will feature Edward and Heather Crafts’ young area students whom we helped sponsor in their summer program Musica Nelle Marche in Urbino, Italy, this year. Please plan to join us for all these outstanding programs next season.