2016 © ARE Opera Inc.

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Faculty

ARE

Youth

Brooklyn Native Christopher S. Lilley has been singing since before he can even remember. He attended the Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music in Lincoln Center. It was there that he grew to love various genres of music, but specifically classical music. He later attended the Manhattan School of Music and received his BM and MM in Voice Performance.

As a teacher, Christopher is a firm believer that every person has a voice and something to say. His passion is seeing his students develop not only technical attributes of singing, but a true identity within their own voice. His focus in teaching is equally divided between vocal production and musical interpretation. “From the youngest to the eldest singers, vocal music can serve to be an introduction to understanding and developing ones own emotions.”

Christopher's favourite composers include (but are not limited to) W.A Mozart, Gaetano Donizetti, H.T. Burleigh, Richard Strauss, and Franz Schubert, just to name a few. He says his greatest musical influences are Lawrence Brownlee, Fritz Wunderlich, Langston Hughes and his mentor, C. Anthony Bryant. Along with classical music, he also enjoys Gospel, Musical Theatre (especially Disney Music), Hip-Hop and Soul music. One thing that Christopher is passionate about is the performance of pieces written by men and women of colour (spirituals and otherwise). "There is a treasure trove of music written by people of colour just waiting to be performed."

Along with his musical endeavors, Christopher is also a spoken word poet frequently performing in various venues throughout the city.

Kathleen Spencer is a New York based mezzo soprano.  Most recently she performed the role of Miss Jessel in Benjamin Britten's Turn of the Screw with the Chautauqua Music Institute. She has performed roles such as Maddalena in Verdi's Rigoletto with the Asheville Lyric Opera and the Janeic Opera Company, Effie in The Ballad of Baby Doe with the Janeic Opera Company, the title role in The Rape of Lucretia at Manhattan School of Music, and Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro with the Vancouver Opera Studio.  Other roles include Henrietta M. (The Mother of Us All),  Mädchen (Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny) & Hansel (Hansel und Gretal). Scene work includes: Angelina (La Cenerentola), Carmen/Mercedes (Carmen), Alica (Lucia di Lammermoor), Sesto (La clementza di Tito),  and Erika (Vanessa).

Outside of opera, Kathleen enjoys singing with her church praise band and writing music of her own. She is a lover of all musical art forms including pop, rock, music theatre, praise, and folk.


Along with performing, Kathleen is passionate about creating music and making it accessible for all people. In 2016 she co-founded ARE Opera, a New York City based opera company who's mission is to make opera accessible, relatable, and accessible to all people as well as provide opportunities for young artists. The company has thus far succeeded in its journey and is looking to grow and expand its horizons.  Kathleen believes in building opera lovers from the ground up so in turn, when our children and youth grow older they will expose their children to  all that opera has to offer.   

Singer, actress, and dancer—Alexa Clint is a versatile performer who has been entertaining audiences for more than 15 years. She was most recently a 2015 Masters recipient from the Manhattan School of Music, where she studied with voice teacher Neil Rosenshein and coach Shane Schag. While at MSM, she performed in the chorus in The Mother of Us All; served as teaching assistant for Francis Patrelle’s Movement for Singers classes (where she drew on her background in ballet, modern dance, ballroom, and dance for musical theater); and was a cast member and choreographer of the Discover Opera! outreach program. During the 2014-2015 academic year, she was the co-choreographer of the senior opera, Das Land des Lächelns.

Alexa attended the Manhattan School of Music's Summer Voice Festival for three years: in 2011, she performed the role of Claudia in their production Nine and in 2012 she undertook the role of Desiree Armfeldt in A Little Night Music. In 2014, she returned to perform in Nine, this time as Lilliane LaFleur. After performing a work in development in the advanced class of the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, Alexa was named "BMI Performer of the Week." She performed the role of Pamina in Die Zauberflöte at the 2015 Trentino Music Festival (Italy), where she also participated in a Master Class with Deborah Voigt.
Alexa was a Wagnild Scholarship recipient and received her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from the Sunderman Conservatory at Gettyburg College. Credits include Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet and Lady Bracknell in The Importance of Being Earnest , and tours with the Gettysburg College Choir as a featured soloist in their performance of Ravel's Trois Chansons.

In addition to her musical pursuits, Alexandra was an assistant director intern and choreographer of McCarter Theater’s (Princeton) Summer Shakespeare program, and also won McCarter’s 2009 YouthInk! playwriting competition. When not on stage, Alexa has enjoyed success as a competitive ballroom dancer and qualified for the Junior Olympics as an épée fencer.