Presented by East Passyunk Ave Business Improvement District
Sunday, September 10, 2023
1:30 – 2:30 PM
Corner of Mifflin Street and E Passyunk Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19148
Join ePOP at the inaugural East Passyunk Music Festival! The festival will be held on Sunday, September 10th, from 11 am to 6 pm along 5 blocks of the Avenue, from Broad to Dickinson.
This location offers a perfect setting for an unforgettable experience. East Passyunk Avenue is renowned for its eclectic mix of independently owned shops, diverse restaurants, and lively bars. As festival-goers make their way through this vibrant stretch, they will be immersed in a dynamic atmosphere that captures the essence of Philadelphia’s cultural scene.
The East Passyunk Music Festival promises an exciting family-friendly day filled with a variety of music, including East Passyunk Opera Project! ePOP's performers for the festival include vocalists Katrina Thurman and Brian James Myer with pianist Abigail LaVecchia.
Abigail LaVecchia, pianist
Abigail LaVecchia is a pianist based in Philadelphia. She is on the faculty of the classical voice and choir departments at the Boyer College of Music at Temple University. Abigail is music director at Morrisville United Methodist Church, where she is organist and director of the chancel and bell choirs. She is a piano teacher at Friends Select School.
Abigail holds a Master of Music in Collaborative Piano and a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from Temple University where she was a student of Charles Abramovic and Lambert Orkis. She lives in South Philadelphia with her husband Patrick, daughter Socorro, and dog Wolfgang.
Brian James Myer, baritone
Baritone Brian James Myer has earned accolades for his exceptional artistry, combining a distinctive voice with captivating character portrayals. Highlights of his 2022-23 engagements included performances as Papageno in Die Zauberflöte with both Opera Orlando and Norwalk Symphony Orchestra, David Miller in Approaching Ali at Opera Las Vegas, Milcom Negley in The Last American Hammer with Opera Grand Rapids, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus at the Bar Harbor Music Festival, and a role debut as Count Almaviva in Le nozze di Figaro with Tri-Cities Opera and Syracuse Opera. On the concert stage, he joined Symphony San Jose as the baritone soloist in Carmina Burana, and performed a concert of English Art Song with the Brooklyn Art Song Society. Upcoming engagements for 2023-2024 include Rey in Before Night Falls with Opera Southwest and a recital of Wolf's Mörike lieder with the Brooklyn Art Song Society. Additionally, he will join Opera Delaware and Opera Baltimore for an LGBTQ+ themed recital in December.
In the spring of 2021, Mr. Myer returned to New York City Opera as Alberto in their workshop of The Garden of the Finzi-Continis (Gordon/Korie) and in the 2021-2022 season, he reprised the role in the opera’s world premiere. That season, he also joined the roster of The Metropolitan Opera as the cover of Marcellus/Player 4 in Brett Dean’s Hamlet, made his Opera Delaware and Baltimore Concert Opera debuts as the title character in Il barbiere di Siviglia, joined the Bard Symphony Orchestra as Second Nazarene in Salome, and debuted with the Berkshire Opera Festival debut as Masetto in Don Giovanni.
On the concert stage, Mr. Myer has appeared as soloist in Mozart’s Requiem and Coronation Mass, Milhaud’s Cantate de Psaumes, Bach’s Magnificat and Christmas Oratorio, Rutter’s Mass of the Children, and Brahms’ Liebeslieder Walzer in venues across North America. He has recently made his Opera Orlando debut as part of their Opera in the Park summer concert series, performing as a member of "The Three Baritones" to sold-out audiences. The group has since released a new album entitled "Christmas Around the World".
Katrina Thurman, soprano
Soprano Katrina Thurman has been praised for her “remarkably vibrant and flexible voice” (Gramophone) and her “wonderfully clear sound and natural warmth of character” (Opera News). She is a versatile artist who has built a solid reputation performing traditional operatic repertoire while also specializing in contemporary opera and musical theatre. Her repertoire encompasses over 45 roles in six languages and has taken her to theaters including The Metropolitan Opera, Opéra de Lyon and Festival Lyrique de Belle-Ile en Mer (France), Oper Bonn (Germany), Opera Philadelphia, The Dallas Opera, Glimmerglass Festival, Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Florentine Opera, New York City Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Opera Omaha, Utah Opera, Tulsa Opera, American Opera Projects, Anchorage Opera, and Indianapolis Opera.
Ms. Thurman is a noted specialist in contemporary opera and created the roles of Liz in Cummings’ The Golden Gate (American Opera Projects), Blanche Ingram in Karchin’s Jane Eyre (Center for Contemporary Opera & recording on Naxos label), Isabella Beecher in Bond’s Mrs. President (Anchorage Opera), and Martha in Karchin’s Romulus (American Opera Projects) which was also recorded on the Naxos label. Recent seasons include her debut with Opera Naples as Hildy in On the Town, Miss Lightfoot in Gregory Spears’ Fellow Travelers with Virginia Opera, and her stage debut with The Metropolitan Opera as Meretaten in Akhnaten.