Equally at home in the worlds of opera and musical theatre, his 2014/15 season includes: Lucia di Lammermoor (Opera in Williamsburg) Nine (Manhattan School of Music), The Pirates of Penzance (Shreveport Opera), Sweeney Todd (Eugene Opera) The Magic Flute (Anchorage Opera) and Man of La Mancha (Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre).
His work regularly appears on the stages of opera companies throughout the US: The Threepenny Opera (Opera Columbus), Der fliegende Holländer & Carmen (OperaDelaware), The Pirates of Penzance & Die Fledermaus (Opera Carolina), Jongleur de Notre-Dame & Candide (Opera Boston), The Tender Land, Rigoletto & The Merry Widow (Mobile Opera), My Fair Lady, Le nozze di Figaro & Carousel (Shreveport Opera), Falstaff, Fiddler on the Roof & The Magic Flute (Natchez Festival of Music) L’elisir d’amore & Aida (Cedar Rapids Opera ), La Cenerentola (Lyric Opera of San Antonio), Così fan tutte & Tosca (Amarillo Opera), La Bohème (Opera East Texas), Trouble In Tahiti, Don Pasquale, The Sound of Music and Il barbiere di Siviglia (Anchorage Opera), The Gondoliers, H.M.S. Pinafore, The Mikado and The Barber of Seville (Chautauqua Opera).
His New York credits include The Desert Song, The Merry Widow, Countess Maritza and the recent critically acclaimed City Center productions of The Pirates of Penzance and H.M.S. Pinafore. Off-Broadway, Fabris directed the 20th anniversary production of Boy Meets Boy.
Internationally, he directed Nine in Brugge, Belgium, A Little Sondheim Music and The Music of Leonard Bernstein at the Liceu in Barcelona, as well as the European tours of Jesus Christ Superstar and Hair. He also choreographed the award-winning short film Boot Camp, which was featured at Sundance.
As an educator, Fabris directed 25 productions for Westminster Opera Theatre and the musical theatre program, for which he helped develop for Rider University. He was also a guest director at Boston University, Portland State University, Manhattan School of Music, Montclair State College and Loyola University, New Orleans.
Named Artistic Director of Bay View Music Festival in 2007, Dr. Chris Ludwa has proven himself to be an effective leader, both on stage and off. In addition to overseeing the intensive eight-week summer concert series and conservatory program in northern Michigan, he served as Director of Performing Arts and Ensembles for Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, OH for two years. In August 2015, he took the position of Music Director for The Federated Church in Chagrin Falls, OH where he not only leads 4 ensembles but has created a concert series. He served for 10 years as Artistic Director of Encore Vocal Arts, a 36 member, professional caliber vocal ensemble in Indianapolis and is now Artistic Director for Voices of The Valley, a professional vocal sextet. Ludwa enjoyed joining his passion for great music with his love for teaching and collaboration in having served as a conductor for Bloomington Pops Orchestra, Bloomington Symphony, Columbus Indiana Philharmonic, and Terre Haute Symphony Orchestra. He maintains an active freelance schedule while continuing his work as a consultant on various arts-in-education initiatives. In 2012, he completed his doctoral studies at Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music in conducting, music education, and group dynamics.
Having received his DM in Conducting from Indiana University in 2012, the Cincinnati native worked for Indianapolis Opera as Apprentice Conductor/Outreach Administrator and served as guest conductor for many different organizations including Webster University, Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, Indiana Repertory Theatre, and various others. In February 2004, he organized a massive clean-up with over 80 volunteers to re-open a 700-seat auditorium in downtown Indianapolis to rave reviews after having been dormant for 40 years. The hall is in use today by several Indianapolis arts organizations and continues to work toward a full renovation.
Ludwa is well-known for innovative, stimulating programming in his work with various musical organizations and hopes to continue to be a visionary force in ways of helping the general public to appreciate an ever-increasing array of musical styles.
After witnessing the power of the arts to motivate and create community, Ludwa is convinced that the wave of the future is to integrate aesthetic process into education, business, government, and daily life. He has gained experience in this area through the educational world as a partner artist with the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, a consultant/trainer for the Leonard Bernstein-inspired Artful Learning School Reform Model, and at the International School of Indiana as Director of Arts. He has participated in the Thought Leader Forum at the Banff Centre in Alberta, Canada, a leading institution in the application of aesthetic process to leadership and has since begun writing a book exploring the same topics.
As a devotee of the learning process, Ludwa has taught at the Bay View Association, Butler University, and Indiana University, and is a recipient of the Lilly Endowment-funded Creative Renewal Fellowship Grant, which he used to explore drumming, communication, and values in Ghana, West Africa.
An avid pilot, Ludwa is married to his best friend, Melissa, who is a constant source of inspiration, fun, and intellectual conversation. She is an independent career counselor. Chris and Melissa are parents of two boys, Alexandre (6 y.o) and Elliott (3 y.o.).
Sarah Stone is thrilled to return to the Bay View Music Festival in 2014 as stage director of Mozart’s opera Così fan tutte and the S.O.A.R.S. Opera à la carte program. Stone’s previous productions at Bay View have been well received by audiences and critics alike. Mary Jane Doerr of the Petoskey News Review claims of the 2012 production of Titanic, the musical, "Sarah Stone's direction is so tight the action never slows down through smoothly changing scenes...It doesn't get any better than this!" and of 2013’s production of Falstaff "This Verdi comedy is fast paced, full of action, tightly as well as imaginatively directed by Sarah Stone in her typical style".
Ms. Stone apprenticed with the Indiana University Opera Ballet Theatre as a stage director and opera administrator under director Vince Liotta (IU & Chicago Lyric Opera), renowned scenic artist David Higgins and Tim Stebbins, Executive Director of Opera Ballet Productions. While pursuing studies in Voice Performance and Opera Stage Direction at Indiana, she was commissioned to write an adaptation of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado for the undergraduate opera workshop, set in a Nissan Factory in Tennessee which has been produced at colleges around the country, most recently at University of Louisiana. With the IU Opera Ballet Theatre she also worked under the direction of Colin Graham, Yefim Maizel, Håkan Hagegård, Michael Ehrman, and James Marvel among others.
Described as a "fearless performer" Ms. Stone's credits include performances with Kentucky Opera & Louisville Ballet, Indiana University Opera Theatre, Dorian Opera and the Boston Symphony Orchestra's Tanglewood Music Center under the direction of David Effron, Ronald Zollman, Jeff Cook and James Levine. Praised for her dynamic presence and versatility her repertoire covers a broad range from the page boy Stephano in Gounod's Romeo et Juliette to Zita, the overbearing aunt, in Puccini's Gianni Schicchi. An avid collaborator and promoter of new works for the stage, Ms. Stone played the roles of Margaret in Adam Guettel's collegiate premiere of Light in the Piazza as well as Thi Kinh in the workshop premiere of P. Q. Phan's opera The Tale of Lady Thi Kinh. She has also recorded two albums of works by Indiana-based composer Daniel Powers, winner of the Ned Rorem Award for Song Composition. She is a founding member of Yara, a voice/piano based ensemble specializing in Luso-Latin repertoire, along with acclaimed Portuguese pianist Alexandra Mascolo-David.
Sarah hails from London, England, but was raised in São Paulo, Brazil, where she had a career as a professional soccer player and sports commentator before relocating to the United States to pursue musical studies. She lives in the Louisville area with her husband Matthew, a photographer for the Courier-Journal, and their two Jack Russells, Jack and Phoebe.
Dr. LaToya Lain, a native of New Orleans, Louisiana, studied voice at the University of Cincinnati-College Conservatory of Music, Florida State University, and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. She is a former Assistant Professor of Vocal Music at Oakwood University in Huntsville, Alabama and has also served on the faculties of New York University, Alabama A&M University, and Medgar Evers College-City University of New York.
Dr. Lain’s rich mezzo-soprano voice has afforded her the opportunity to perform throughout the United States and internationally. She has graced the stages of Africa, Europe, and South America, performing such roles as the title role of Carmen, Zita in Gianni Schicchi, Dame Quickly in Falstaff, Baba in The Medium, and Tituba in The Crucible. She was the requested soloist to sing The National Anthem for President Barack Obama during his 2012 campaign visit to Nevada. She also recently performed as the mezzo soloist in Bob Jones University’s performance of The Verdi Requiem. One reviewer remarked, “the guest singers did a marvelous job…I’m particularly biased toward the mezzo-soprano, who was extremely classy and had a wonderfully rich voice.”
Her awards include Encouragement Awards from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and the Gerda Lissner Foundation Scholarship Competition in New York City. She has received both first and second places in the National Association of Teachers for Singing Vocal Competitions and earned a full scholarship to attend the International School of the Performing Arts in Pennsylvania. In addition to being an effective voice teacher, one of her ministries is to continue to promote and preserve the art of the Negro Spiritual, and to that end, she has performed and recorded with The Moses Hogan Chorale and is currently a touring member of The American Spiritual Ensemble.