Saturday, February 5, 2022 | 7:30pm
St. Mark’s Lutheran ChurchVenue InformationSan Francisco
About This Performance
Bass-baritone Dashon Burton, described by Opera News as “reverberant and eloquent…with quiet authenticity, depth and tenderness,” brings a gentle note to an evening of song.
JOHN JACOB NILES: Evening, The Flower of Jesse, Black Is the Color, I Wonder as I Wander
KURT WEILL: Four Songs of Walt Whitman: Oh Captain! My Captain; Beat! Beat! Drums!; Dirge for Two Veterans; Come Up From the Fields, Father
PAUL BOWLES: Heavenly Grass, Lonesome Man, Cabin, Sugar in the Cane
SAMUEL COLRIDGE-TAYLOR: Oh What Comes Over the Sea; When I Am Dead, My Dearest; Oh Roses for the Flush of Youth; She Sat and Sang Alway; Unmindful of the Roses; Too Late for Love
MARGARET BONDS: Minstrel Man; Dream Variation; I, Too
WILLIAM GRANT STILL: I Am a Black Pierrot from Songs of Separation
MARQUES L.A. GARRETT: A Love Song; Del Mio Amato Ben; Herz, Mein Herz; Adieu, Jusque Je Vous Revoye
MOSES HOGAN: Selections of Spirituals (to be announced)
Jeanne Newman, Individual Sponsor
Bass-baritone Dashon Burton has established a vibrant career in opera, recital, and with orchestra. In key elements of his repertoire—Bach’s Passions and the B minor Mass, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Beethoven 9, the Brahms Requiem, Handel’s Messiah, and Mozart’s Requiem—Dashon is a frequent guest with the major orchestras of the United States, Europe, and Japan.
In the 2019–20 season, he performed these works and others with the Minnesota and National Arts Centre Orchestras, the St. Louis Symphony, the New York Philharmonic, and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. A frequent guest of the Cleveland Orchestra, he sang Michael Tilson Thomas’ Rilke Songs there, led by the composer. In the fall of 2019, Dashon sang the world premiere of Caroline Shaw’s The Listeners (a part written by Shaw specifically for Burton), with the Philharmonia Baroque and Nicholas McGegan.
Opera engagements have included Sarastro in Die Zauberflöte in Dijon and Paris and Jupiter in Rameau’s Castor et Pollux with Les Talens Lyriques; Strauss’ Salome at the Salzburg Festival (led by Franz Welser-Möst in a production by Romeo Castellucci), and Peter Sellars’s production of Claude Vivier’s Kopernikus, un ritual de mort at Paris’ Théatre de la Ville.
Burton continued as a Resident Artist in the 2019–20 season with San Francisco Performances, and sang recitals throughout the US, including a program based on works from his album Songs and Struggles of Redemption; We Shall Overcome, singled out by The New York Times as “profoundly moving…a beautiful and lovable disc.” Dashon is an original member of the groundbreaking vocal ensemble, Roomful of Teeth, with whom he won a Grammy for their recording of Caroline Shaw’s Pulitzer-Prizewinning Partita for 8 Voices. In March of 2021, Burton won his second Grammy, this time for Best Classical Solo Vocal Album for Dame Ethyl Smyth’s The Prison with The Experiential Orchestra on Chandos.
Pianist and conductor Robert Mollicone is a member of the San Francisco Opera music staff, where he serves as coach, prompter, and assistant conductor; he is also a frequent guest at such companies as Seattle Opera, Utah Opera, The Dallas Opera, and Opera San Jose. He has prepared productions with and assisted many of today’s leading conductors, including Jesús López-Cobos, Stephen Lord, Donald Runnicles, Patrick Summers, and Nicola Luisotti. These nearly 40 productions since 2010 span the breadth of the operatic repertoire, including Ariadne auf Naxos, Turandot, La Cenerentola, Les Troyens, La Finta Giardiniera, and Show Boat.
A commitment to the propagation of American opera led Mollicone to work on the 25th anniversary production of Nixon in China as well as Moby-Dick, Dolores Claiborne, and The Secret Garden. He also conducted performances of Weiser's Where Angels Fear to Tread at Opera San Jose, and participated in the workshop for Marco Tutino’s Two Women. Mollicone served as head coach/accompanist for the premiere of Jake Heggie and Terrence McNally's Great Scott at The Dallas Opera.
Equally at home on the concert stage, Mollicone collaborates frequently with both rising stars and veteran singers including Denyce Graves, Theo Lebow, Elisabeth Bishop, Andrea Carroll, Simon Estes, Nicholas Phan, and Jamie Barton. He makes his Carnegie Hall debut alongside soprano Melody Moore in May 2016.
Recently, Mollicone was invited to conduct a program of opera scenes at Wolf Trap Opera in the summer of 2015. He later debuted, whilst preparing Luisa Miller for the opening of San Francisco Opera’s 2015–16 season, as co-composer for trixxie carr’s one-woman show, Salome, Dance for Me.
He is a graduate of San Francisco Opera's Adler Fellowship, as well as of the Domingo-Cafritz Young Artist Program at Washington National Opera. He holds a M. Mus. from Boston University, where he studied with Shiela Kibbe.