Events | Zemlinsky & Exile Composers

Villa Aurora | February 25, 2024 | 3:00 PM (PST)

As we are fully booked, seats will be available on a first come, first served policy. An RSVP does not guarantee a seat.

Zemlinsky & Exile Composers – Recovered Voices at LA Opera & the Colburn School and the Musica Non Grata program of Prague Operas

Villa Aurora is the former home of writer Lion Feuchtwanger and his wife Marta who regularly hosted one of the most influential salons of “Weimar by the Sea”. With the series “Remembering the Exiles”, Villa Aurora commemorates the Feuchtwangers and other artists and intellectuals displaced and often silenced by the Nazi regime.

Following a performance of works by Alexander Zemlinsky and other exiled composers, we will present a panel discussion led by James Conlon on the fate of exiled composers and the quest to make their voices heard again, a mission the LA Opera and Colburn School Recovered Voices initiatives share with the Musica Non Grata program initiated by the National Theatre Opera and the State Opera in Prague.



Erwin Schulhoff: Suite No. 3 for Piano (left hand alone), WV 80, 1st movement: Preludio 5’

Domenic Cheli

Welcome and Intro

Dr. Markus Klimmer, Michelle Müntefering MdB, Amb. Jaroslav Olša, Jr.

Vítězslava Kaprálová 10’

Sbohem a Šáteček, op. 14; From Vteřiny, op. 18; #3 Nº 2 Písen Milostná;

Nº 4 Velikonoce

Kathleen O’Hara, Blair Salter


Joy H. Calico, Per Boye Hansen, Prof. Jan Burian

Vítězslava Kaprálová: Elegie for Violin and Piano 4’

Adam Milstein, Domenic Cheli


Joy H. Calico, Maestro James Conlon

Zemlinsky Maeterlinck Lieder 20’

Madeleine Lyon, Chi-Jo Lee


Final Discussion

Joy H. Calico, Per Boye Hansen, Maestro James Conlon

Bohuslav Martinů: Violin Sonata No. 2, H. 208 20’

Adam Millstein, Domenic Cheli





Recovered Voices

LA Opera’s Recovered Voices initiative, launched in 2007, is one of the company's most important and celebrated artistic achievements. Made possible thanks to generous support from Marilyn Ziering and the Ziering Family Foundation, Recovered Voices has not only been a welcome journey into the supercharged emotions and lush imagery of late Romantic music, but it has also been a critical step in bringing some of the great lost masters of opera to light. With the launch of Recovered Voices, LA Opera became the only major American opera company to regularly program the works of composers affected by the rise of the Third Reich.

Led by Founder and Director James Conlon and inspired by LA Opera’s Recovered Voices project, the Ziering-Conlon Initiative for Recovered Voices at The Colburn School was established in 2013 with the support of Marilyn Ziering. Through performances in Southern California and around the world, writings, original video series, a Ted Talk titled “Resurrecting Forbidden Music”, classes, competitions, symposia, recordings, and more, the Ziering-Conlon Initiative for Recovered Voices brings well-deserved attention to composers whose names and works were very nearly eliminated from history. It is designed also to inspire young musicians to learn about the artists and return to their music throughout their career.

Musica Non Grata

The Musica Non Grata project, initiated by Prague Operas and presented with financial support from the Federal Republic of Germany, revives the legacy of composers who played a vital role in the musical life of interwar Czechoslovakia and who were persecuted by the Nazis due to their ethnicity, gender, religion or political opinions.

RSVP here

Prof. Jan Burian, Director General, National Theatre, Prague

In 1984, Jan Burian completed his studies of stage direction at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague. In his final year, he worked as a director at the Evening Brno Theatre of Satire. His first engagement was at the Oldřich Stibor Theatre in Olomouc. In 1986, he served as a guest stage director in Plzeň, where in the next year he was engaged. Until 1989, when he assumed the post of Artistic Director of the Plzeň drama company, he staged a number of remarkable produc­tions, including of Mikhail Bulgakov’s play Adam and Eve, Karel Steigerwald’s The Tartar Fair and, in Czechoslovak premiere, Alexander Kazantsev’s Eve’s Dreams. In 1990, he staged the Czechoslovak premiere of Václav Havel’s play Temptation. From 1991 to 1995, he worked at the Vinohrady Theatre in Prague.

James Conlon Richard Seaver Music Director, Los Angeles Opera
© Dan Steinberg

As Music Director of LA Opera, James Conlon has led more operas than any other conductor in company history—over 500 performances of more than 60 works. Highlights of his LA Opera tenure include the company’s first Ring cycle; initiating the groundbreaking Recovered Voices series, an ongoing commitment to staging masterpieces of 20th-century European opera suppressed by the Third Reich; spearheading Britten 100/LA, a city-wide celebration honoring the composer’s centennial; and conducting the west coast premiere of The Anonymous Lover by Joseph Bologne, Chevalier de Saint-Georges, a prominent Black composer in 18th-century France.

Joy H. Calico, Professor of Musicology at the UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music
© UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music

Joy H. Calico is Professor of Musicology and Director of Graduate Studies in the Musicology Department. Her scholarship focuses on interdisciplinary Cold War cultural politics, opera since 1900, and Arnold Schoenberg. She is the author of two monographs published by University of California Press: Brecht at the Opera (2008; paperback 2019) and Arnold Schoenberg’sA Survivor from Warsawin Postwar Europe (2014; expanded Italian edition published in 2023; Russian translation forthcoming in 2024). Her current book project, also under contract with California, is a theory of twentieth- and twenty-first-century opera according to scene type built on Kaija Saariaho’s L’amourde loin. She is also co-editor with Justin Vickers of a collection for OUP entitled Childhood and the Operatic Imaginary since 1900.

Per Boye Hansen, Artistic Director, State Opera and Opera of the National Theatre
© Prague National Theatre

Per Boye Hansen is an experienced opera, music and theatre manager. Born in Oslo in 1957, from 2012 to 2017 he held the post of Artistic Director of Den Norske Opera (Norwegian National Opera), which during his tenure rose to become a prominent opera company and enjoyed great international acclaim. Between 2005 and 2012, he served as General and Artistic Director of the Bergen International Festival. The largest of its kind in Northern Europe, it annually presents a number of world premieres in the field of dance, theatre, classical music and opera



Kathleen O’Mara

Kathleen O’Mara is a Young Artist in the LA Opera’s Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program. She graduated from the Juilliard School with a M.M. in 2020 and Westminster Choir College with her B.M. in 2018. Kathleen made her LA Opera debut as Berta in Rossini’s Il barbiere di Siviglia this past fall. She will also be singing the First Maid in Zemlinksy’s Der Zwerg with LA Opera. In the summer of 2024, she will be a Gaddes Festival Artist with Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, where she will appear as Duchess Christina in Galileo Galilei by Philip Glass. In the summer of 2023, she covered the role of Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte for both Opera Theatre of St. Louis and Palm Beach Opera, after previously performing Fiordiligi at the Juilliard School in 2019. She has covered various roles including the First Lady in The Magic Flute with the CoOPERAtive Program, Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro with Music Academy of the West, the Governess in The Turn of the Screw, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni and Susan B. Anthony in Virgil Thomson’s The Mother of Us All at Juilliard. She has participated in programs including the Gerdine Young Artist Program at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis, Palm Beach Opera’s Apprentice Program, Sewanee Summer Music Festival, Houston Grand Opera’s Young Artist Vocal Academy, and Music Academy of the West.

Madeleine Lyon

Madeleine Lyon, mezzo-soprano, is a proud native of San Marcos, Texas. In 2022, Ms. Lyon joined the Los Angeles Opera as a Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist. She made her LA Opera main stage debut as Alisa in Lucia di Lammermoor, a new production co-produced with the Metropolitan Opera. She was also seen as Bianca in LA Opera’s production of The Rape of Lucretia, Genevieve/Yniold in Impressions of Pelleas, and Bithia in Moses by Henry Mollicone. In 2022, Ms. Lyon finished her graduate studies at Rice University where she previously obtained her Bachelor of Music degree in 2019. There she was seen as Zerlina in Don Giovanni, the title role in Ravel’s L’enfant et les sortilèges, and Taller Zegner in Missy Mazzoli’s Proving Up. She is also passionate about oratorio and concert work, and has been the mezzo soloist in the Mozart Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, and selections from the Verdi Requiem. This summer, Madeleine will join Opera Theatre St. Louis as a Gerdine Young Artist, where she will sing the role of Nirena in Giulio Cesare. Ms. Lyon is also an avid painter and loves to spend time with her grey tabby cat, Pickle.

Blair Salter
© Daniel Welch

Canadian collaborative pianist Blair Salter is a versatile performer and music director who has worked at prestigious opera companies throughout North America. Blair is currently Head Coach for the LA Opera Young Artist Program, and has been a member of the music staff at Santa Fe Opera since 2019. She has previously worked as music staff at San Francisco Opera, Houston Grand Opera, Opera Colorado, Michigan Opera Theatre, and New Orleans Opera, and was Music Director for Opera Theatre at Penn State University from 2021-23. Blair was a conductor with The Dallas Opera's Hart Institute in 2023, and she is the creator of the contemporary aria database Voce Moderna. She is a graduate of the Houston Grand Opera Studio, San Francisco Opera’s Merola Program, Wolf Trap Opera, and the Glimmerglass Festival; Blair completed her DMA at the University of Michigan, where she studied with Martin Katz.

Adam Millstein

Adam Millstein is a violinist who is developing a multifaceted career as a performer, lecturer, and music curator. He is currently pursuing his Artist Diploma at the Colburn School in Los Angeles under the renowned pedagogue, Robert Lipsett. He holds his Masters Degree from Colburn and his Bachelor of Musical Arts Degree from the University of Michigan, where he studied with Danielle Belen. Millstein is also the Program Manager of the Ziering-Conlon Initiative for Recovered Voices at the Colburn School.

Dominic Cheli

Dominic Cheli embraces the role of an artist-citizen in his multifaceted career as performer, educator, composer, and director. He is described as an “inspired keyboardist” (artsfuse) whose playing is “spontaneous yet perfect, the best of how a young person can play.” (Symphony Magazine). His rapidly advancing career included his Walt Disney Concert Hall Debut with the Colburn Orchestra where Dominic was “mesmerizing, (he) transfixed the audience.” (LA Times). He gave his Carnegie Hall Recital Debut in 2019 and has had a busy performing and recording career ever since. He recorded his 2nd CD on the Naxos label of the music of Liszt/Schubert, and was a performer/ producer/editor on a 3rd CD of the music of Erwin Schulhoff for the Delos Label featuring his collaboration on Piano Concerto no.2 with Maestro James Conlon. He also recently completed work as a composer, audio editor and performer on the documentary Defying Gravity (2021).

Chi-Jo Lee

Chi-Jo Lee, currently pursuing her Artist Diploma in piano performance at the Colburn Conservatory of Music, where she previously received her master’s degree, studying with Fabio Bidini. She made her recital debut in 2015 and has won prizes in competitions in Asia and the United States, including Wideman International Piano competition, The Odyssiad Festival and Competition, the Eslite chamber music audition in Taiwan, and the concerto competitions at Indiana University and The Colbuen School. Ms. Lee is an alumna at Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, where she studied with pianist André Watts, and was the recipient of three scholarships. Her performances have recently been reviewed positively by the San Diego Union-Tribune and The Santa Barbara Independent.

Villa Aurora
520 Paseo Miramar
Los Angeles, CA 90272
Free with RSVP.
Please register here.

Street Parking is available on Los Liones Drive. Shuttle service starts at 2:00 pm from Los Liones Drive, off Sunset Boulevard two blocks North East of Pacific Coast Highway. Please do not park in the Topanga State Park Lot!


In cooperation with the Los Angeles Opera and the Colburn School

Go back