Colloquium Concert: Franz Schubert's Winterreise

October 16, 2021 at 5:306:30 p.m.

TimeOctober 16, 2021 at 5:306:30 p.m.

The Department of Music presents baritone Cory J. Renbarger and pianist Stephen Carlson in concert. This performance is free and open to the public.

About the performers:

Baritone Cory J. Renbarger currently serves as the coordinator of applied voice and director of opera theater at Bemidji State University, where he joined the faculty in 2012.  He holds degrees from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn., as well as the Cincinnati College-Conservatory and the University of Minnesota, where he completed his doctoral studies. 

Cory has performed in opera, oratorio, and recital across the United States and abroad with companies such as Florida Grand Opera, Dayton Opera, Opera Theater Festival (Lucca, Italy), Minnesota Opera, Lyric Opera Cleveland, Chicago Opera Theater, Fargo-Moorhead Opera, Ashlawn Opera, Sorg Opera, The Dayton Philharmonic Orchestra, Southern Tier Symphony, and others.  Some of his notable opera roles have included Mozart’s Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro), Don Giovanni (Don Giovanni), and Guglielmo (Così fan tutte), Britten’s Tarquinius (The Rape of Lucretia), Verdi’s Marullo (Rigoletto), and Puccini’s Sharpless (Madame Butterfly), Sciarrone (Tosca), and Gianni Schicchi (Gianni Schicchi).  In oratorio, he has been heard in Mozart’s Requiem, on national broadcasts of Handel’s Messiah, Haydn’s Creation, Fauré’s Requiem and more.  

In 2008, Cory was a national semi-finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, where he performed on stage at the Metropolitan Opera in New York.  During his time at the University of Minnesota, he also served as the official anthem singer for the Minnesota Wild hockey franchise.  Dr. Renbarger continues to pursue an active operatic and recital career in addition to his studio, class, and stage work with his students at Bemidji State University. 

As director, Cory has staged opera and operetta productions from a wide range of the repertoire, including Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance, Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte, Michael Ching’s Speed Dating Tonight!, and many more.  In 2017, Dr. Renbarger joined the vocal faculty for the Northern Lights Opera Festival in Hibbing, Minn., where he also sang the role of Zaretsky in Tchaikovsky’s Eugene Onegin.  Recently Cory was also seen in the title role in Gianni Schicchi with Fargo-Moorhead Opera, as Marullo in Lyric Opera of the North’s Rigoletto, and as Bass Soloist in Handel’s Messiah with the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra.  Upcoming engagements include continuing the recital tour of Schubert’s Die Winterreise and the role of Alfio in Mascagni’s Cavalleria Rusticana with Fargo-Moorhead Opera.  Prior to joining the faculty at BSU, Dr. Renbarger taught voice at Houghton College, Luther College, and as a graduate instructor of record at The University of Minnesota.  He resides in Bemidji, Minn. with his wife Amanda and their daughter Bella.

American pianist Stephen Carlson began his undergraduate studies as a political science major and Army ROTC Scholarship Cadet.  A member of the Bemidji State University Music Department since 2006, he is a versatile soloist and chamber musician who has performed at many colleges, universities, and festivals throughout much of the U.S. and Canada.  In 2005, Dr. Carlson made his New York debut as a solo recitalist in Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall with a program that included Schumann’s Symphonic Etudes, Stravinsky’s Three Movements from Petrushka, and various works by Beethoven, Debussy, and Scriabin.  From 1995 to 2003, he appeared at Minnesota Valley Sommarfest (St. Peter, Minn.) where he performed an array of solo and collaborative works.  He has appeared with the Bemidji Symphony Orchestra three times performing Beethoven’s Emperor Concerto (2010), Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto No. 1 (2009) and Beethoven’s Triple Concerto (2007) along with Michelle Laliberte and Patrick Riley.  He also performed the Tchaikovsky with the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony, Mozart’s Concerto in A major, K. 414 with the Gustavus Adolphus Chamber Orchestra, and Saint-Saëns’s Carnival of the Animals with the Mississippi Valley Chamber Orchestra.  In October of 2017, he also performed live in Minnesota Public Radio’s studio.

He completed the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in piano performance and pedagogy at the University of Iowa where he studied with Uriel Tsachor.  In March of 2017, he was honored to be invited by his doctoral institution to give a solo recital and master class to doctoral students in partial celebration of the opening of their new $189 million music building.  He is also a graduate of the University of Illinois and Gustavus Adolphus College where he studied with Ian Hobson and John McKay, respectively.

Dr. Carlson has a successful undergraduate studio at Bemidji State and is pleased to see students go on to major graduate schools or private studio teaching.  Also an innovative clinician with wide-ranging interests, he is frequently called upon to give master classes, piano teacher workshops, and to adjudicate contests.  His clinic entitled, An Athletic Approach Toward Playing the Piano, was presented at the South Carolina Music Teachers Association Conference.  Most recently, he instituted Piano Day with the support of the Bemidji State University Foundation and Department of Music.  In addition, Dr. Carlson has published articles for the journal American Music.  Prior to coming to Bemidji State where he is Professor of Music and Chair of the Music Department, Carlson was a tenured faculty member at Coker College in Hartsville, South Carolina.  He has also taught piano at the University of Arkansas Pine Bluff, Gustavus Adolphus College and St. Joseph’s School of Music in St. Paul, Minnesota.

PostedOct 11, 2021