Praised as a “sophisticated artist” with a “gorgeous voice” and “stratospheric vocals” (Winnipeg Free Press), soprano Katherine Mayba is an exciting artist in the opera scene. A native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, she has performed with Manitoba Underground Opera as Ilia (Idomeneo) and Amore (L’incoronazione di Poppea), Manitoba Opera (Don Giovanni, Falstaff, Madama Butterfly) and has made regular appearances with Flipside Opera. She has also performed as a soloist with the WSO and through the Orville J. Derraugh Scholarship Competition, and has competed in the Winnipeg Music Festival winning several awards including the Rose Bowl. This season she joined the WSO on their Holiday Tour and future engagements include: Titania (The Fairy Queen), Queen of the Night (The Magic Flute) and the Ukrainian Art Song Project Summer Institute. Katherine studies at the University of Manitoba and is a student of Tracy Dahl. A multidisciplinary musician, she holds her ARCT Performance Diploma in Voice, Piano and Violin from The Royal Conservatory of Music.
Julie Anna Gulenko (Soprano)
is praised for her graceful soprano voice and sensitive musical interpretations. The northeast Ohio native is an alumna of Oberlin Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Marlene Rosen and performed in several Oberlin Opera Theater productions. ClevelandClassical.comnoted the singer’s delightful approach to the role of Serpetta in Oberlin’s modern staging of La finta giardiniera by Mozart. Ms. Gulenko has made multiple appearances with both Canton Comic Opera and the Summit Choral Society, and has recently collaborated on performance projects with the Cleveland Ballet, the Western Reserve Historical Society, and the Tuesday Musical Association. The young artist has participated in master classes with Serbian mezzo-soprano Milena Kitic and Venezuelan soprano Inés Salazar.
Teryn Kuzma (Soprano)
is a Ukrainian-American soprano, hailing from Hartford, Connecticut, where she studies voice with Dr. Constance Rock. Ms. Kuzma is a member of the Women’s Bandura Ensemble of North America, where she is an ensemble member and serves on the artistic committee. Ms. Kuzma is a recent graduate of the University of Connecticut with a Bachelor’s degree in Vocal Performance. While at school, she performed with the Opera Theater and Opera Outreach programs in several roles, including Belinda in Dido and Aeneas, Amalia Balash in She Loves Me, Una Novizia in Suor Angelica, and a Fairy Sprite in Massenet’s Cendrillon. Most recently, she appeared with The Ohio Light Opera in Wooster as an ensemble member and featured soloist. Last year, she attended the SongFest Program in Los Angeles as a Young Artist and won the 2018 University of Connecticut Concerto & Aria Competition.
She is thrilled to be joining the Ukrainian Art Song Project this year as a featured artist.
Andrew Skitko (tenor)
Andrew Skitko earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Music at Westminster Choir College. Through Westminster, Skitko has performed with the world’s leading conductors and orchestras at venues such as Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. Skitko sings regularly with the Opera Philadelphia Chorus, The Philadelphia Symphonic Choir, The Same Stream Choir, and participated in The Oxford University Choral Institute as a member of the Grammy-nominated ensemble, Williamson Voices. He is a professional cantor for the Byzantine-Ruthenian Church, and is also the artistic director of Theoria Chamber Choir, which performs Slavic choral repertoire. Additionally, Skitko is an assistant producer, singer, and member of the Ukrainian Art Song Project.
Kateryna (Katya) Khartova (Soprano)
had moved to Canada from Ukraine in 2007 at the age of 18. During her first year in Saskatoon she started taking voice lessons and immediately fell in love with opera. In 2011 Katya was accepted into the Music Department at the University of Saskatchewan where she has been studying under the tutelage of Dr. Garry Gable and Kathleen Lohrenz Gable. In 2016 Khartova has graduated with a Music Bachelor Honours in Voice Performance. During her school years Katya has been a chorus member of the numerous opera productions with the Saskatoon Opera Association and was three times accepted to the Opera NUOVA 10 Day (2014, 2015) and the Six Weeks Intensive (2017) Summer Programs. She has won the Wallis Silver Memorial (2014) and Bronze Grand Awards (2015) at the Saskatchewan Music Festival. In March of 2017 year Kateryna Khartova had her orchestral debut with the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra as a soprano soloist for the Ukrainian oratorio 'Golden Harvest' by Larysa Kuzmenko. She is now continuing her education at the Glenn Gould School of Music in Toronto in the class of Monica Whicher.
YURII HRYHORASH (baritone)
is a Mastersgraduate from the Lviv National Music Academy. He was also a member of its Opera Studio.
To date, Yurii has had considerable success in singing competitions: 1st place at the "Teren-Yushkiv", Lviv; 2nd place at the "Malaniuk", Ivano-Frankivsk, and 2nd place at the "21st Century Art", Kyiv.
As soloist, Yurii has performed at the Lviv National Opera and the Lviv National Philharmonie. In 2016, he made his debut in the title role in Le nozze de Figaro, a joint project with the Lviv Opera and Lviv National Music Academy. In 2018, Yurii appeared as a guest artist in the Jan Kiepura International Festival in Poland.
Repertoire: Eugene Onegin Tchaikovsky, Figaro and Сount Almaviva Le nozze di Figaro Mozart, Belcore L'elisird'amore Donizetti, Doctor Malatesta Don Pasquale Donizetti and the Sultan Zaporozhets za Dunayem Hulak-Artemovsky.
"...I am delighted to be part of the Ukrainian Art Song Project Summer Institute in Toronro It is bound to provoke many thoughts and offer me new approaches which will help me immeasurably in my preparation as a singer..."
Olenka Slywynska (Mezzo-soprano)
Olenka Slywynska has been praised with having “a lush, honey-coloured sound filling the hall, singing everyone else under the table” (Opera Canada). Ms. Slywynska performs in opera, oratorio and does recital work. She has enjoyed interesting recital opportunities at the Tanglewood Music Festival, Hamilton Philhamonic’s What’s Next festival, and ARC festivals. Olenka has performed oratorio with the Hamilton Philharmonic Symphony, Toronto Classical Singers, Vesnivka and many others. Ms. Slywynska has enjoyed singing in operas with the Highlands Opera Studio, Opera Chai and operas at the Glenn Gould School of Music. She has also sung in the Canadian Opera Company Chorus. Olenka has recently earned a Masters in Pedagogy from the University of Toronto and is presently teaching voice.
Alexandra Beley (Mezzo-Soprano)
Ukrainian-Canadian Alexandra Beley is quickly establishing herself as an up and coming young mezzo-soprano. Alexandra recently completed two years at L’Atelier Lyrique with Opéra de Montréal, where she made her debut with the company singing Berta (Il barbiere di Siviglia). The following year, Alexandra sang Second Maid in Strauss’s Elektra under the baton of esteemed conductor and current Music Director of the Metropolitan Opera, Yannick Nézet-Séguin. Prior to her time in Montreal, Alexandra completed a year in Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Program, where she made her debut singing the title role in The Rape of Lucretia. Other roles include Gertrude (Roméo et Juliette), Suzuki (Madama Butterfly), Dorothée (Cendrillion), Dorabella (Così fan tutte), Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro), Hänsel (Hänsel und Gretel), Dinah (Trouble in Tahiti), and Stéphano (Roméo et Juliette). Alexandra is also incredibly passionate about performing new operatic works. Since 2013, Alexandra has regularly worked with the Bicycle Opera Project. Some of her most notable performances being the 2017 tour of Sweat and the world premier of Llandovery Castle in 2018. Alexandra is thrilled to be participating in the Ukrainian Art Song Summer Institute later this summer.