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Graham Fandrei
Director of the Young Artist Program

Performer, educator, and entrepreneur Graham Fandrei has been one of South Florida’s most active classical singers, singing with Florida Grand Opera, Seraphic Fire, the Master Chorale of South Florida, Opera Naples, Gulfshore Opera, the Young Patronesses of the Opera, Miami Lyric Opera, Orchestra Miami, and as the official national anthem singer for the Florida Panthers hockey team. His performance background includes operatic and concert performances in the U.S. (Knoxville Opera, Connecticut Concert Opera, Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Opera Omaha, Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Austin Symphony Orchestra, Aspen Music Festival), Europe (Rotterdam Philharmonic), and Asia (Imperial Theatre in Tokyo), and he was also an original cast member in film director Baz Luhrmann’s landmark production of La bohème on Broadway.

Mr. Fandrei has spent years as an educator in colleges, public schools, and as a private voice teacher. He has done master classes at high schools and universities including Gulf Coast University, has taught general elementary school music, was the chorus director and director of four steel pan orchestras at MAST Academy high school, and was a voice teacher in the classical and musical theater departments at the New World School of the Arts. He has maintained a private voice studio of over 20 students in South Florida since 2006, teaching styles ranging from classical to pop.

As an entrepreneur Mr. Fandrei conceived, developed, and managed an online search engine for classical singers and performing arts institutions, Mr. Fandrei attended the New England Conservatory of Music, where he studied voice with soprano Patricia Craig and participated in the opera studies program under Maestro John Moriarty. Mr. Fandrei also attended The Juilliard School in New York, studying voice with both David Clatworthy and W. Stephen Smith.

María Paulina García,

Originally from Cuba, Maria Paulina Garcia returns to Florida Grand Opera this season for her second year with the Company. Her most recent engagement as a vocal coach was with the 2014 Miami Summer Music Festival (Puccini’s Suor Angelica), presented in the New World Center on Miami Beach. In 2013, Ms. Garcia was a Young Artist at Opera North where she played and coached for several productions (Lucia di Lammermoor, South Pacific), in addition to serving on the faculty of the VOICExperience Foundation’s workshop program with Sherrill Milnes and Maria Zouves in New York City.

From 2012-14, she was coach/accompanist for the opera department at Florida International University’s School of Music. Ms. Garcia has also enjoyed several engagements abroad in Italy, serving on the faculty of the Siena Music Festival in 2012 and Opera at Lago di Como in 2010. Maria earned her master’s degree and Professional Studies Degree in Vocal Accompanying from the Manhattan School of Music, and her Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance from Florida International University.

Tessa Hartle,

Equally at home in operatic, solo, and chamber repertoire, Tessa Hartle’s most recent engagement was serving as a pianist/coach on the music staff of Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. Previously, she served on the music staff of Virginia Opera, Sarasota Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Opera North, and Aspen Opera Theater Center. In addition to her work as a coach in the standard repertory, Tessa has also prepared and performed new contemporary American works, notably with UrbanArias in Arlington, VA (Spears’ Paul’s Case) and with the University of Maryland Opera Studio (Musto’s Later the Same Evening). A native of Pittsburgh, PA, Tessa holds a Bachelor of Music Degree in Piano Performance from the University of Michigan, and a Master of Music Degree in Collaborative Piano from the University of Maryland – College Park, and is the recipient of Sarasota Opera’s Gunther & Ilse Kern Award for Opera Artists.

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