HGO's Concert of Arias Celebrates Rising Stars, Offers Notes of Hope

Priscilla Dickson
HGO's Concert of Arias Celebrates Rising Stars, Offers Notes of Hope

Event chairs Jack Roth and Liz Grimm with first-place winner Navasard Hakobyan

WIDELY KNOWN FOR cultivating and championing young artists, the Houston Grand Opera on Friday hosted its 34th annual Concert of Arias, a vocal competition followed by a seated dinner and celebration of the winners.


A panel of judges — soprano Christine Goerke; HGO’s new general director and CEO ,Khori Dastoor; its music director, Patrick Summers; and its artistic advisor, Ana María Martínez — watched and listened to the talented budding stars from across the globe belt out their best on the Wortham Theater’s Cullen Stage. They awarded cash prizes to four artists, including Armenian baritone Navasard Hakobyan, who took home the grand prize of $10,000.

A livestream version of the showcase was also available, and those who tuned in could even cast their vote for the Online Viewers’ Choice Award, which went to soprano Olivia Smith.

After the conclusion of the competition, a seated dinner was held in the Wortham’s Grand Foyer, which was decked out by The Events Company, who brought in beautiful blooms and spring greens that elicited feelings of hopefulness for a brighter year.

Ana Maria Martinez and Gabriel Attal

Warren and Rachel Ellsworth

Bill Brown and Patricia Holmes

Omar Chaabi, Lulu Tan, Hugh Zhang, Kathy and Marty Goossen

Dreyvon Anderson and Allyson Pritchett

Myrtle Jones and Candice Penelton

Mark Clemens and Anne Tsao

Lindy and John Rydman

Elizabeth and Richard Husseini

Emily Bivona and Ryan Manser

Duke and CC Ensell

Brian McCulloch and Jeremy Garcia

Finalist Tatiana Carlos soprano with Lulu Tan

Art + Entertainment
Duos, Trios and Teams: ‘Next-Generation’ Mother-Daughter Leppert Duo Debuts

Clare Leppert and Clementine, the Cavachon. Leigh Leppert and Benny, the Bernedoodle.

HOW DID YOU come together as a team? This fall, we are celebrating the introduction of an exciting real estate collaboration between Clare Leppert, longtime Houston Realtor®, and daughter Leigh Leppert. Clare shared a 20+ year real estate partnership with her mother, Bette Carpenter, until Bette’s death in 2016. Having worked solo for several years, Clare in 2021 was awarded Houston Business Journal’s No. 2 Luxury Realtor® in Houston. Leigh, who has been working in marketing for the past decade, has always shared a passion for real estate and watched Clare successfully balance family and career. We are excited to re-create the next generation of a mother-daughter duo at Compass!

Keep ReadingShow less

Orleans Seafood (photo by Becca Wright)

FORGET MARCH MADNESS — mudbug madness has arrived. Fans think the little critters taste like baby lobsters, so they can’t gobble up enough. Here’s where to hit for the most badass boils in town.

Keep ReadingShow less
Food

'Alma's Rainbow'

THIS WEEKEND, FEB. 3-5, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston presents Through the Lens of African American Women, a mini-festival of four films and one short, all directed by Black women. The lineup was curated by UH graduate Autumn Johnson, who interned with the MFAH film department last summer and produced the short film This is Real Life, which has earned 70,000 views and counting on YouTube. As Houston is home to such talented Black female film directors as Candice D’Meza, Lisa E. Harris and Brittany Bass, and this being Black History Month, the festival is timely and will resonate with anyone interested in great, independent filmmaking.

Keep ReadingShow less
Art + Entertainment