Jennifer Diane Behnke, inaugural recipient of the Eugene L. Brister Memorial award from the Wagner Society of New York, is a true dramatic soprano. As such, she is an alumna of Wagner Intensive at Baldwin Wallace University performing parts of the roles of Sieglinde in Die Walk ȕre, Elsa in Lohengrin, Adriano in Rienzi and an invited scholarship artist at Johanna Meier Opera Theatre Institute at Black Hills State University singing the role of Female Chorus from Britten’s Rape of Lucretia. An active recitalist, she recently performed two works “Aria di Angelo” from Pawel Łukaszewski's Resurrectio(US Premier) and Paschale Gaudium by Aurelio Porfiri, composed for dedicated to, and given its world premier dedicated by Ms. Behnke. A regular leading lady with New York Opera Forum, Jennifer has most recently performed Brȕnnhilde in Wagner’s Gőtterdämmerung and Leonore in Beethoven's Fidelio. In the coming months she will be seen in the title role of Suor Angelica(Puccini), Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni(Mozart), The Marschallin in Der Rosenkavelier(Strauss) and Marguerite in Faust(Gounod). Ms. Behnke has served as director of Sacred Heart Children's Schola since 2014, and watched with delight as the group has grown from 5 to a total of 20 musicians. As of December 2016, she serves as the director of music ministries at Sacred Heart Church in Bloomfield, New Jersey. www.jenniferdbehnke.com
Kevin Eliot Brown, double bass and baritone, earned his M.M. in double bass performance (classical) and B.M. in Jazz Studies (double bass performance) from the University of North Texas, where he studied with Jeff Bradetich and Fred Hamilton. His performance and recording experience includes the Staten Island Symphony, Metro Lyric Opera, Orchestra of St. Peter-by-the-Sea, New Jersey Pops, New Jersey Ballet, Marvin Hamlisch, Rich Little, Regis Philbin, Joan Rivers, Bob Newhart, Daryl 'DMC' McDaniels, David Sanborn, the Drifters, Monkeyworks, and Mike Richmond. In addition to holding positions at Sacred Heart Church and Temple B'nai Abraham as a singer, he also serves as faculty in both the String and Music Theory departments at Montclair State University, Fairleigh Dickinson University, and the Wharton Institute for the Performing Arts.