Zoe-Elizabeth McCray

 

The Centre for Opera Studies in Italy gratefully acknowledges the generous founding support of The Bel Canto Foundation for Italian Heritage and Opera.

COSI 2018 Program:
June 13 - July 15, 2018

52nd International Vocal Competition 's-Hertogenbosch Preliminary Round, in Sulmona's "Maria Caniglia" Opera House:
June 23, 2018

COSI Academy:
July 5 - July 15, 2018

Opera Chorus Program:
July 1 - July 15, 2018

Opera Creation Lab for composers and singers:
July 5 - July 15th, 2018.

COSI 2018 presents:
W.A. Mozart - Le Nozze di Figaro J. Haydn - Il Mondo della Luna G. Puccini - Gianni Schicchi Dean Burry - Il Giudizio di Pigmalione (World Premiere)

COSI 2018 Applications remain open for video applicants

Apply today!

Zoe-Elizabeth McCray will be joining COSI 2017 summer opera program as Suor Angelica in this summer’s production of Puccini’s Suor Angelica. Here she discusses why she loves singing and making a viral video.

1. What made you start singing?

I started singing in my grandfather’s church in Alexandria, VA. Singing was not much of a choice: we went to church every Sunday and when it was the children’s turn to sing you sang. I started to sing more seriously by sophomore year of high school when I got bit by the musical theater bug!I started singing in my grandfather’s church in Alexandria, VA. Singing was not much of a choice: we went to church every Sunday and when it was the children’s turn to sing you sang. I started to sing more seriously by sophomore year of high school when I got bit by the musical theater bug!

2. What do you love about singing?

When I sing I feel free. When I sing I feel uninhibited. When I sing I feel connected to a power bigger than myself. When I sing I feel joy and that it is okay to be exactly who I am nothing more nothing less.

3. Why did you apply for COSI 2017 Summer Opera Program?

I applied to COSI 2017 because I had heard such great things about the staff and experience from others that have participated in the program before. I’ve also never been to Europe ad have wanted to visit Italy for as long as I can remember.

4. What do you hope to gain from the program?

I’m excited to push my musical and emotional boundaries in the role of Suor Angelica. She’s a character I have come to know and love, having understudied this character last summer. I am not a mother, but I have always known and felt the unconditional love for me by my mother and am excited to explore than type of love and eventual heartbreak.

5. What has been the highlight of your singing career so far?

I was blessed to have been asked to perform in and speak at a TED Talk event in Charlottesville, VA with my collegiate acapella singing group JMU Note-Oriety to promote and explain my vision and successful execution of our music video, a cover of Beyonce’s Pretty Hurts, which went on to amass more than half a million views on YouTube and, I have been told, has inspired many to accept and love themselves for who they are. Watch it here.

6. What has been the most difficult part and what did it teach you?

The most difficult part of my short singing career so far has been a cancellation of what would have been my New York debut in a concert with a very respected orchestra due to fundraising issues. It taught me so much about timing, trusting your gut and not letting the things you cannot control control you. It also taught me to always stay humble and present.

7. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

A decade from now at 32, I want to wake up every morning excited and ready for whatever the day  and God has in store for me.

If you would like to help Zoe-Elizabeth with her COSI experience, please visit her fundraising page. To have your own COSI experience, contact us at cosi.program.manager@gmail.com

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