Office: Humanities 212
Office Phone : 726-8208
Jennifer Graupmann, soprano, is making a name for herself in the region as a versatile performer and music educator specializing in classical and jazz styles. Since moving to Duluth in 2008, Ms. Graupmann has appeared with the Duluth Festival Opera, Lyric Opera of the North, UMD Opera Theater and Glensheen Opera and has been a featured soloist in concert with the UMD Symphony Orchestra, the College of St. Scholastica Early Music Ensemble and the Itasca Community Chorus.
Her operatic roles include Nedda in Pagliacci, Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro, Nannetta in Falstaff, and Anne Page in The Merry Wives of Windsor. She has been featured as a soprano soloist in concert in Barber’s Knoxville: Summer of 1915, Handel’s Messiah, Vivaldi’s Gloria, Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, and Fauré’s Requiem. In the summer of 2012 she returned to the musical theater stage with the Renegade Theater Company as Jenny in Company. She received Second Place in the 2012 Minnesota District NATS Artist Award Competition, was a 2010 finalist of the Schubert Club Scholarship Contest, a 2009-2010 recipient of the Bakke Choral Scholarship for the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra, and a 2008 graduate division finalist of the Minnesota NATS competition.
Ms. Graupmann graduated summa cum laude with a BA in Music from Luther College and received her Master of Music degree in vocal performance from the University of Minnesota Duluth. Ms. Graupmann is a founding member of the new Twin Ports Choral Project, the director of the Lake Superior Youth Chorus Choristers, and choir director at First Covenant Church in Duluth. Ms. Graupmann is active as an adjudicator for the Minnesota State High School League Solo and Ensemble Vocal Music Contests. A member of the National Association of Teachers of Singing, she maintains private voice studios in Duluth and Grand Rapids, MN, and is an Adjunct Instructor of Voice at the University of Minnesota Duluth.
Inselman – Voice, Opera & Song Literature, Diction
Office: 240 Humanities
Rachel Inselman, soprano is an Associate Professor of Voice at the University of Minnesota Duluth. Ms. Inselman has performed extensively throughout the United States as well as internationally with symphony orchestras including the Shanghai Broadcasting Symphony Orchestra, Paris Sinfonetta, Cleveland Orchestra, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Toledo Symphony, Lincoln Symphony Orchestra, and the Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra. Her concert repertoire includes soprano soloist for the Brahm's Requiem, Beethoven's Choral Fantasie, Mozart's Requiem and Exsultate Jubilate, Fauré's Requiem, Handel's Messiah, Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass, Poulenc's Gloria, Vivaldi's Gloria, Mahler's Fourth Symphony and Vaughan William's Sea Symphony.
As a recitalist, Rachel has appeared in Palermo, Italy; San Jose, Costa Rica; Istanbul and Izmir, Turkey; Thunderbay and Windsor,Canada; Uvalde, Texas; Stillwater, Oklahoma; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Grand Rapids, Michigan; and Minneapolis and Duluth, Minnesota; including her 2008 tour of an All American Art Song Recital with her mother and pianist, Elsie Inselman.
Ms. Inselman's opera roles include Hanna in The Merry Widow, Tatiana in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Micaela in Carmen, Adele in Die Fledermaus, Laetitia in The Old Maid and the Thief, Olympia in Les Contes d'Hoffmann, Marzelline in Fidelio, Despina in Cosi fan tutte, Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro, Gretel in Hansel and Gretel, Nella in Gianni Schicchi, and Miss Silverpeal in The Impresario.
As an opera director, Ms. Inselman has staged Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro and Cosi fan tutte and Verdi's La Traviata. She has served as musical director for Le Nozze di Figaro, Cosi fan tutte, Die Fledermaus, Hansel and Gretel, La Boheme, La Traviata, L'elisir d'amore, and the musicals Sweeney Todd, Kiss Me Kate, The Baker's Wife and Chicago, as well as vocal coach for Damn Yankees, Do Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up?, and Merrily We Roll Along.
Rachel has been a guest master clinician at numerous performing arts high schools, colleges, universities and conservatories both nationwide and abroad, and recently finished her fourth summer as a voice teacher for the Sieur Duluth Summer Opera Festival. As an accomplished pianist, she has played for several musical theatre productions and was invited in 2010 to Istanbul, Turkey to teach the art of accompanying musical theatre in a week long workshop.
Ms. Inselman was named a winner at the 1996 Metropolitan Opera District Auditions for the fourth consecutive year, was a third place finalist at the Met Regional Auditions in 1995 and 1996, and was awarded first prize in the 1996 Schubert Club Scholarship Competition. Rachel completed her Artist Diploma Degree at the Cleveland Institute of Music, where she also received her Master's Degree, and she earned a Bachelor's Degree from Oberlin College.
In October of 2010, Rachel and her mother, Elsie will extensively coach with American Art Song composer Richard Hundley to prepare a comprehensive recital of his works that they plan to tour in the 2011-2012 season.
Kate F. Kulas
Office: Humanities 217
McConico – Tenor
Office :Humanities 212
Office Phone: 726-8208
Marcus McConico's impressive presence and versatile range warrants rave reviews in performed signature roles such as Il Duca in Rigoletto, Fenton in Falstaff, Frederic in The Pirates of Penzance, Lysander in A Midsummer Night's Dream, Ferrando in Cosi fan tutte, Alfredo in La Traviata, Manrico in Il Trovatore, Rinuccio in Gianni Schicchi, Ruggiero in La Rondine, Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, Rodolfo in La Boheme , Calaf in Turandot, the title roles in Faust, Albert Herring, Romeo in Romeo et Juliette, as well as Don Jose in La tragedie de Carmen.
Mr. McConico has appeared with numerous opera companies and symphonies throughout the U.S. including Austin Lyric Opera, Opera Columbus, Augusta Opera, Baltimore Opera, Opera Roanoke, Asheville Lyric Opera, Knoxville Opera, Virginia Opera, Opera Carolina, Dupage Opera Theatre, Duluth Festival Opera, Skylark Opera, Lyric Opera of the North, Des Moines Metro Opera, Central City Opera, Duluth Superior Symphony Orchestra, and Knoxville Symphony Orchsetra. International credits include concert performances in Izmir, Ankara, Marmaris, and Yalikavak, Turkey, as well as recital appearances in Palermo, Italy and Tel Aviv, Israel.
Concert and Oratorio work for Mr. McConico includes Tenor Soloist in Turkish Oratorio Yunus Emre, Tenor Soloist in Händel's Messiah, Uriel in Haydn's The Creation, Tenor Soloist in Bach's B Minor Mass, Tenor Soloist in Carmina Burana, and Second Tenor Soloist in Beethoven's Chorale Fantasie.
A member of the American Tenors since 2004, Marcus has performed with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Pacific Symphony of Orange County, CA., the Redlands Symphony, CA., and the Desert Symphony, CA., as well as concerts in Hot Springs Village, AR., Auburn, AL., Wenatchee, WA., Harlingen, TX, Lakeside, OH, and elsewhere. Upcoming engagements include a nationwide tour with the American Tenors and Live on Stage for the 2011-2012 season.
Mr. McConico holds an MM in Vocal Performance from the University of Tennessee, and a BM in Vocal Performance from the University of Minnesota Duluth. Mr. McConico is currently an Adjunct Teacher of Voice at the University of Minnesota Duluth.
Mokole – Voice
Office: 215 Humanities
Office Phone: 726-7426
Praised by both Opera News and the Washington Post for his "powerful, rich warm baritone," Elias Mokole is equally at home in recital, musical theatre and orchestral concerts, as well as opera. Since 2005, he premiered three major Verdi roles, Nabucco in concert at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, Amonasro in concert performances of Aida at Radio France, and as Rigoletto with Fargo–Morehead Opera. During the 2008-09 season, Mokole appeared as soloist in Carl Orff's Carmina Burana with the Corvallis-OSU Symphony Society and the Oregon State University Chorus, as Raphael in Haydn's Creation with the University of Nebraska-Omaha chorus and orchestra, and in recital with the Oregon Coast Music Association, and in recitals at the Britzer Gemeindesaal in Berlin and Paris. Upcoming engagements include soloist for Vaughan Williams Five Mystical Songs for the Saint Cecilia Day Concert in Omaha, NE and Handel's Messiah for the Briar Cliff's 2010 "Christmas at the Orpheum" in Sioux City, IA.
Performance highlights include: Germont in La Traviata and Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor for Dayton Opera, Sharpless in Algiers [Africa], with the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra and for Minnesota Opera, Scarpia in Chattanooga Symphony and Opera's production of Tosca, Ford in Falstaff with Greensboro Opera, Elijah with the Walla Walla Symphony, and as the title role in Gianni Schicchi in Des Moines. Internationally, the artist recently was the soloist in Handel's Messiah, Bach's Weihnachtsoratorium in Japan [Osaka, Tokyo], as Valentin in Faust and the Mozart Requiem [Paris], as Agamemnon in Offenbach's La Belle Helene at UNESCO [Paris], in Lyon with L'Ensemble Orchestral Contemporain as soloist in Shostakovich's Symphony No. 14 and with the Dayton Philharmonic as soloist for the Brahms Requiem.
Mokole received a Bachelor of Music degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music. He has participated in several international competitions winning the following awards: the Maryland Prize in the Baltimore Opera International Voice Competition, the Union League Prize for Arts in Chicago, and top prizes in the MacAllister International Voice Competition. His training continued at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia [artist diploma]; concentrating on study of style, language, and stage experience. Mr. Mokole was then selected for the Lyric Opera of Chicago's Artist in Residence Program [LOCAA], where he had the opportunity to perform principle roles with the Opera Center as well as singing minor roles in Lyric's mainstage productions. In contemporary works, Mr. Mokole had the rare opportunity to work with composer Patrick Lama on the role of Ba'al in his opera KAN'AAN; for orchestra, choir, and four soloists on ancient ugaritic poems. Additionally, he sang the Paris premier of Lama's Le lit de l'etrangere, a cantata for soprano, baritone soloists and orchestra; based on the poems of Mahmoud Darwich sung in Arabic. Additionally, Mr. Mokole has appeared as a singer in two independent films. The Lost Door was filmed in Paris and released in Italy and Germany in spring of 2005. The second film, For Me, directed by Yann Kilbourne, features Mokole singing the famous Charles Aznavour tune in a unique setting. This film was recently selected for the 8th annual Festival des Tres Courts and was presented in a program called "Around Musique" in May 2006 at Le Grand Rex Cinema in Paris, France.
From 2000-05, at the Paris American Academy, Mokole conducted intensive courses in French language, diction, voice, as well as leading classes exploring the medium of opera through text, vocal color, and its evolution from past to present. In June 2004 at the American Embassy in Paris, sponsored by the French American Foundation, he presented a recital themed "Americans in Paris" featuring the music of Ives, Copland, and Barber as well as excerpts from the Jardins de Paris by French composer Marc Berthomieu. Mr. Mokole has additionally performed his "Americans in Paris" recital in Iowa, Nevada, and South Dakota.
In addition to performing, Elias Mokole is committed to the education of the next generation of singers. He has served on the faculties of the American Academy in Paris, France, and Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona, and University of Nebraska Omaha. Mokole is the Artistic Director of the Festival of Song and Arts Academy [songfestival.org], in addition to lecturing and conducting master classes throughout the United States, as well as abroad.
Alice Pierce – Opera and Voice
Office: Humanities 236
Office Phone: 726-8213
Soprano, Alice Pierce, joins the faculty at the University of Minnesota at Duluth as Instructor of Voice and director of the opera scenes program. She received a BM and MM in Vocal Performance from Indiana University. Early in her career, she served on the faculty at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington and the North Carolina School of the Arts. During these years, she was a Metropolitan Opera Regional finalist twice, singing often in concert and opera. In 1992, she moved with her family to Germany where she became a full-time soloist with the Brandenburg State Theater in Cottbus. For ten years she averaged almost 100 performances a year in opera, operetta, musical and concert. Some of the highlights of her career there include the roles of Olympia in the Tales of Hoffmann, Adele in Fledermaus, Maria in West Side Story, Blonde in Die Entführung aus dem Serail and Oscar in Un Ballo in Maschera. She also performed in many other cities in Germany, as well as in Poland and Italy. Mrs. Pierce was a member of the voice faculty at Western Michigan University from 2005 through 2012, teaching voice and directing opera. She is an active member of NATS and NOA, and has had many students win local, state and regional competitions. She continues to concertize around the United States in recital and oratorio.
John Pierce – Voice
Office: Humanities 212
Office Phone: 726-8208
One of the leading heldentenors of his generation, John Charles Pierce has sung in opera houses and concert halls around the world. His interpretation of the role of Tristan in Wagner's Tristan and Isolde, a pinnacle of the tenor repertoire, has been the pillar of his career. Pierce graduated from the University of Illinois with a BM and MM in Vocal Performance. Further studies followed at Indiana University. He was an Apprentice with Santa Fe Opera and a Metropolitan Opera Regional Finalist as a baritone. After making the switch to dramatic tenor, he won the Wagner Prize at the Liederkranz Competition in New York City, then moved with his family to Germany, where he sang full-time at the Brandenburg State Opera House in Cottbus for ten years. There he sang much of the important repertoire for his voice type, including Wagner's Lohengrin, Tannhaueser, Rheingold and Flying Dutchman, Verdi's Otello, Hoffmann, Freischütz, Fidelio, Jenufa, Katia Kabanova, Pique Dame, Samson and Dalilah and many others. He has sung these and other roles in countless theaters in Germany. Pierce has shown surprising flexibility, singing music in all styles. As a baroque singer, his ornamentation and trills have been lauded. At the other end of the spectrum, he sang dozens of performances of Tony in West Side Story to acclam. His collaboration with John Wustman has yielded wonderful performances of Schubert's Winterreise, both at home and abroad. Verdi's, Dvorak's and Mozart's Requiems, Beethoven's 9th Symphony, Elijah and Messiah count among the many concert works he has performed.
His Tristan debut was in 2000 in Dortmund. Since then, he has sung that role in Prague, Poland, Rio de Janeiro, Innsbruck, Rotterdam, Victoria- Canada and in many cities in Germany. In 2010 he was featured as Tristan in Japan, as well as in the Wagner Festival in Wels, Austria. In 2011 he debuted as Parsifal at the Croatian National Theater in Zagreb, followed by a concert Parsifal in Germany, then sang Tristan in Brazil and Argentina.
Pierce was previously a member of the voice faculty at the University of Michigan where he was president of the Michigan Chapter of NATS.
Thielen-Gaffey – Voice
Office: 242 Humanities
Office Phone: 726-8212
Tina Thielen-Gaffey is an Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Minnesota-Duluth and has recently completed her doctoral coursework in the Choral Conducting program at the University of Iowa. At UMD, she conducts Concert Chorale, two Vocal Jazz Ensembles (Lake Effect and Chill Factor), teaches elementary music, aural skills, and applied voice. A mezzo-soprano, she completed the M.M. degree in Choral Conducting at Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, MI and her B.M. in music education at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.
Prior to her studies in Michigan, the Wisconsin native taught for eight years in the public schools of her home state, where she was responsible for choral ensembles, band ensembles, vocal jazz and show choirs, musicals, madrigals and madrigal feasts, festivals, and touring. At WMU, Ms.Thielen-Gaffey soloed with the Treble Chorus, University Chorale, Opera Workshop, and the award winning vocal jazz ensemble, Gold Company. Ms. Thielen-Gaffey is a past president of WMU's student chapter of the American Choral Directors Association. At the 2003 and 1999 national conventions of that organization, she was a national finalist in the graduate student conducting competition.
R. Wold – Director of Choral Activities, Voice
Office: 246 Humanities
Office Phone: 726-7504
Stanley R. Wold is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at the University of Minnesota , Duluth , where he has taught choral conducting and vocal music education since 1984. He has earned degrees from Concordia College ( Moorhead ), the University of Southern California ( Los Angeles ) and the College-Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati . At UMD, he directs the University Singers and the Chamber Singers, teaches conducting and vocal music education, and is chair of the vocal area.
Under Wold's direction, University Singers and Chamber Singers completed the first concert tour by an American University choir of Kenya and Tanzania (December 1997-January 1998). Other international tours have included Austria and Bavaria (December 1994), Costa Rica (January 2003), the Netherlands and Paris (May 2005), Turkey (May 2007, together with members of UMD's Symphony Orchestra), and Germany ( Berlin , Leipzig , Dresden ), January 2010. Other highlights include performances at state and regional conventions of the American Choral Directors Association and Music Educators National Conference (1995-98) and the Collegiate Choral Festival of MN ACDA (2009).
Three collaborations between the UMD choral area, Arrowhead Chorale (the auditioned civic chamber choir of the Twin Ports), and UMD orchestras have been conducted by Wold: Durufle Requiem (2000), Bach Mass in B-Minor (2004), and (April, 2006) Mozart Grand Mass in C-Minor. Sites for performances of these masterworks included Basilica of St. Mary, Minneapolis ; cathedrals in Duluth and Superior ; and UMD's Weber Music Hall . In May 2008, Wold conducted the UMD orchestra (Jean R. Perrault, director), Concert Chorale, University Singers, and student soloists in Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem.
Active on an international level, Dr. Wold has studied and/or conducted choral music in Hungary , Russia , Scandinavia , and Venezuela . He has been a delegate to symposia of the International Federation for Choral Music in Vancouver , Sydney , Rotterdam , Minneapolis , Kyoto , and Copenhagen .
Celebrating twenty years as Artistic Director and Conductor of Arrowhead Chorale, Dr. Wold was also Chorus Director for the Duluth-Superior Symphony Orchestra 1991-99. He taught secondary vocal music in Minnesota and Iowa public schools for six years. His experience includes significant community and church music activities. Presently Director of Music at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, Duluth , he is also an active adjudicator and clinician for the Minnesota State High School League and the Wisconsin School Music Association.
For Information about music department programs and upcoming concerts, please call 218-726-8877