Krystal Productions is committed to presenting to the public the finest artistic musical and theatrical performances in the world today, specializing in contemporary artistic expression representing eternal artistic and spiritual values and dedicated to challenging the conventions of the dramatic musical theatre. Rather than attempting to impose foreign or radical structures for shock or novelty, Krystal recognizes the organic process of spiritual and artistic evolution and seeks to establish artistic strength and power through a coalescence of evolving consciousness with the traditions and culture of our civilization.
Date : Friday, April 16, 2004
Location : Weill Hall in Carnegie Hall, NYC

Krystal Classical Productions Presents
Marc Heller In Recital
in The Best Contemporary American Music

Marc Heller is a rising star in the opera world today. Based in New York City, Mr. Heller has been active as a performer in musical theatre from his early youth. After his debut in Carnegie Hall with the New York Pops, Marc has starred in a number of leading roles in opera houses throughout the United States, including the Michigan Opera Theatre, Baltimore Opera, Arizona Opera, Knoxville Opera, and Minnesota Opera. This year Marc sang Alfredo from Traviata at the Opernhaus Halle, Germany. His roles include Don Jose from Carmen, Rodolpho in Boheme, Pinkerton in Madame Butterfly, Romeo in Gounoud’s Romeo and Juliet, the Duke in Rigoletto, and Gustavo in Un Ballo in Maschera. Mr. Heller has also portrayed Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni at the Palm Beach Opera, with Julius Rudel. Heller’s Canadian debut was as Count Vaudemont in Tchaikovsky’s Iolanta at the Festival du Lanaudiere in Joliet, Quebec. Marc has been heard in recital under the aegis of the Villa-Lobos Society at Weill and Merkin Halls in New York and at the Sala Villa-Lobos in Brasilia. Mr. Heller records regularly, including New England Times and Places by Alfred Heller on the CD “Great Poets in Song,” and is recording the opera Spirit Fire with composer William Maselli.

Alfred Heller was a protégé of Heitor Villa-Lobos and is an internationally recognized scholar and interpreter of his music. Born and raised in New York City, Alfred Heller is a composer, conductor, and pianist, with degrees in all three subjects. Dr. Heller began conducting at age 17, after winning a composition competition at New York’s High School of Music and Art, conducting his first orchestral work, a Prelude for orchestra, which later that year became the first movement of his First Symphony. He conducted the world premiere complete recording of Villa-Lobos’ epic masterpiece, Forest of the Amazon with soprano Renée Fleming and the Moscow Radio Symphony Orchestra. Dr. Heller had the opportunity to study several late works directly with Villa-Lobos, including The Emperor Jones , A Menina das Nuvens (The Girl From the Clouds), and Forest of the Amazon, (originally composed for the MGM film, Green Mansions, starring Audrey Hepburn). He coached Bidú Sayao for the original abridged recording of Forest of the Amazon on United Artists Records. Recently, Dr. Heller was commissioned by the Baroness Mariuccia Zerilli-Marimó to compose the Cantata, Confessioni di Sant’Augustini, honoring the elevation of Renato Cardinal Martino. This work had private hearings in Rome on October 21, 2003 as well as one in New York at Steinway Hall on December 18, 2003. Dr. Heller’s studied composition with Nathan Novick, Ernst Bacon and Juan Orrego-Salas, and piano with Siegfried Lichstein, Ernst Bacon and Robert Goldsand. Dr. Heller studied conducting with Toscanini protégé Leon Barzin. Dr. Heller was a Fulbright Scholar in Opera Conducting at the Rome Opera House studying with Luigi Ricci and at the Venice Conservatory studying with Renato Fasano. Dr. Heller has appeared as conductor with the Hungarian State Symphony Orchestra in Budapest, the Brasov Philharmonic in Romania, and toured the Soviet Union. He has accompanied on piano legendary singers Jan Peerce, Giuseppe di Stefano and Mariano Stabile.

John Musto stands at the forefront of contemporary composers writing for the voice. His new opera, Volpone, had its premiere in March 2004 at Wolf Trap in Virginia, and also received a performance of excerpts at The Guggenheim Museum in New York. He was a Nominee for the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for his song cycle Dove Sta Amore, setting the poetry of Sandburg, Agee and Ferlinghetti. Other recent vocal works are The Book of Uncommon Prayer, commissioned by Carnegie Hall, Rags for the Richest, commissioned by the New York Festival of Song, and Penelope, commissioned by the 92nd Street Y. His vocal compositions also include Encounters, Calypso, Quiet Songs, and Shadow of the Blues: Four Poems by Langston Hughes. Mr. Musto’s orchestral and chamber works have been performed by numerous ensembles, including the Dallas Symphony, the Rochester Symphony, the Ahn Trio, and the Janus Ensemble. He has won Emmy Awards for his scores to the documentary films Into the Light and Brick City Lessons, and his most recent film collaboration, George Segal: An American Still Life, was seen on PBS.

William Maselli is a New York-based composer who writes mostly for voice. He has composed a number of Song Cycles, including Easter Songs and Dreams of Love, recorded with soprano Adina Aaron. He has also composed a major vocal and orchestral work, Requiem for John F. Kennedy, as well as the opera Spirit Fire, which is currently being recorded with Adina Aaron, Marc Heller, and bass Aaron Borst. Upcoming performances include the debut of the song cycle Flowers in New York this fall.

Erick Ochsner has been the assistant conductor at the Brooklyn Symphony with conductor Robert Spano. Mr. Ochsner also is assistant to conductor and composer Tan Dun, with whom he has frequently traveled abroad to prepare and present performances. Erik recently was Assistant Conductor with the Boston Symphony Orchestra in the world premiere of Tan Dun’s The Map, featuring cellist Yo-Yo Ma. Mr. Ochsner has also been involved in preparing a number of important opera peformances, including the recent New York performance of John Adams’ Death Of Klinghoffer. Erik has been an apprentice conductor at the Los Angeles Opera, Chicago Lyric Opera, and the Houston Grand Opera, as well as at the Bayreuth International Youth Festival in Germany. Mr. Ochsner studied with Charles Bruck at the Pierre Monteaux School for five years, and has a degree from Dartmouth College. He has founded the SONOS Chamber Orchestra, dedicated to bringing to life contemporary and unknown or underappreciated works, with a specialty of Scandinavian music, where he serves as conductor and Music Director.