In the Loop
Alumni News : Oct 22, 2014

Adelaide Boedecker makes debut at world-renowned Merola Opera Program

By Chloe Weber

Adelaide “Addie” Boedecker (Bachelor of Music, Vocal Performance ’11) recently made her debut at the Merola Opera Program as Stella Kowalski in Tennessee Williams’ A Streetcar Named Desire.

The Merola Opera Program is a highly selective summer training program in San Francisco, California, that gives approximately 23 singers, five apprentice coaches and one apprentice stage director the chance to study under some of opera’s biggest talent.

The program offers accepted young artists intensive technique training, master classes and various performance opportunities, including fully staged operas and the Merola Grand Finale, which showcases all the participants in a gala concert on the stage of San Francisco’s War Memorial Opera House.

"We have not had an alumnus accepted into a program as internationally renowned as Merola in the last 10 years,” said Associate Professor Anthony Offerle. “The Merola Opera program is in the same category as the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Metropolitan Opera."

Boedecker began her opera career in her hometown of Sarasota, Florida, after seeing her sister’s friends perform in the Youth Opera Program at Sarasota Opera. From third grade until the end of high school, Boedecker performed with the program and fell in love with opera.

“I was fortunate enough to be asked to sing the role of Barbarina in the Sarasota Opera mainstage production of Le Nozze di Figaro by Mozart,” said Boedecker. “In that production I realized that it was all I wanted to do with my life. The ability to tell stories and make people laugh and cry for hours is what got me to love performing opera.”

After high school, Boedecker made her way to UF’s School of Music and studied opera under Offerle. There, she learned technique, preparedness and how to be a good colleague.

“Addie did a great job of enjoying all the things that make UF a special campus while maintaining a high level of focus on her singing career,” said Offerle. “One of the things she did that really helped her professionally was to take advantage of every performance opportunity that came her way.”

Since graduation, Boedecker’s career has taken off. She received her Master’s of Music in Vocal Performance and Literature from Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and, while there, performed the roles of Mařenka in Smetana’s The Bartered Bride and Rose in Weill’s Street Scene. These accomplishments lead to her being accepted to Merola.

“Being selected felt like I was winning the lottery. I was flabbergasted that I had been chosen, and I knew that the program was going to change my life,” said Boedecker. “When I received notice that I was being offered the role of Stella, I broke into tears and started jumping for joy.”

During her summer in San Francisco, Boedecker honed her craft through coaching and rehearsals. She also took on the challenge of making her performance in A Streetcar Named Desire the best it could be.

“Our conductor, Mark Morash, our director ,Jose Maria Condemi and our cast made A Streetcar Named Desire an amazing production, so my biggest challenge became the most rewarding experience of my life,” said Boedecker.

Currently, Boedecker is a resident artist with the Pittsburgh Opera. She is slated to perform as Mabrouka in Sumeida’s Song, Frasquita in Carmen and Marie in The Daughter of the Regiment with Pittsburgh Opera.

She plans on continuing with young artist programs and refining her voice in hopes of one day becoming an acclaimed solo artist. 

“In ten years, I see myself performing around the United States and the globe,” said Boedecker. “I would like to be succeeding in my field, spending time with my family and friends and enjoying life.”