Sunday, September 11, 2022 - 3:00pm

1901 23rd St, Vero Beach, FL 32960

BARBER Adagio for Strings (String Quartet Version)
COPLAND Fanfare for the Common Man
WILLIAMS Lincoln: With Malice Toward None
BARBER Symphony No. 1

Thomas Potter, baritone
Kenneth Fuchs, guest composer

In honor of the anniversary of September 11, your Space Coast Symphony will pay tribute to the victims and survivors, their families, and emergency responders, whose lives were forever impacted on that tragic day. Opening the program is Samuel Barber’s moving and searing Adagio for Strings in it's original form for string quartet. Considered by many to be the most popular of all 20th-century orchestral works, Adagio for Strings is celebrated for its fragile simplicity and emotion. The destruction of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 had a deeply personal resonance for composer Kenneth Fuchs, who had lived in New York City for 20 years. His Falling Man was inspired by the 2007 novel about life after 9/11 by Don DeLillo, and is a series of arias and interludes written for voice and orchestra. It will feature celebrated baritone, Thomas Potter. The concert will close with Aaron's personal favorite work, Samuel Barber's powerful Symphony No. 1, a compelling work with unbridled energy and heart-on-sleeve passion.  Rounding out this moving program are works by Aaron Copland and John Williams.

Artist Information

Baritone Thomas Potter began his interest in music performance as a jazz trombonist in High School.  It was while pursuing his Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education that he began to transform into a singer.  After completing a Master of Music degree in Vocal Performance at Indiana University [where his voice teachers were Signor Nicola Rossi-Lemeni and Madame Virginia Zeani] and then two years of intensive musicianship and repertoire study with John Wustman [as a special student at the University of Illinois], Thomas continued his training in the Merola, Western Opera Theater, and Adler Fellowship programs with the San Francisco Opera Center.  In 1986, Potter was a winner of the Luciano Pavarotti International Vocal Competition in Philadelphia Potter, and as such, was awarded the opportunity to sing alongside Mr. Pavarotti in the resulting production of Verdi’s opera UN BALLO IN MASCHERA.  During his residence in San Francisco, he was honored to sing and rehearse with Mr. Pavarotti on two other occasions [Puccini's LA BOHÈME and Verdi's LA TRAVIATA].

Thomas' operatic repertoire throughout the bulk of this career has centered around the great Verdi baritone roles such as "Renato" in UN BALLO IN MASCHERA, "Giorgio Germont" in LA TRAVIATA, "il Conte di Luna" in IL TROVATORE, MACBETH, and RIGOLETTO.  Additional favorite roles he has performed include "Baron Scarpia" in TOSCA, "Sharpless" in MADAMA BUTTERFLY,  "Jochanaan" in Strauss' SALOME, "Marcello & Schaunard" in LA BOHÈME, and all four of the lower-voiced roles on Mozart's DON GIOVANNI ["Giovanni, Commendatore, Masetto, & Leporello"].  Potter has sung leading roles in numerous International music festivals, including the Spoleto Music Festival in both Italy and the USA venues [Philip Glass' opera HYDROGEN JUKEBOX], the Ravenna (Italy) Music Festival [ATTILA], the Bregenzer (Austria) Festspiele [NABUCCO], the La Biennale Festival [Ivan Vandor's APPARITIONS] in Venice, Italy, and the Festival de Inverno - Campos do Jordão [William Walton's BELSHAZZAR'S FEAST] in Brazil.

A few of the opera companies with which Potter has performed include the Teatro Comunale 'Giuseppe Verdi' in Trieste, Italy [DON CARLO], Palm Beach Opera [SALOME, RIGOLETTO, & CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA / PAGLIACCI], Nashville Opera [TURANDOT], Opera Cordoba [TOSCA], Opera São Paulo [CARMEN & NABUCCO], Opéra du Rhin in Strasbourg [DON CARLO], Badisches Staatstheater in Karlsruhe [ATTILA], Atlanta Opera [RIGOLETTO & UN BALLO IN MASCHERA], Utah Opera [SAMSON ET DALILA], Orlando Opera [MADAMA BUTTERFLY & IL TROVATORE], and Indianapolis Opera [LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR, HÄNSEL UND GRETEL, MACBETH, IL TROVATORE, SAMSON ET DALILA, TURANDOT, LA BOHÈME, THE CRUCIBLE, and FALSTAFF].

From 1994 to 2000, Mr. Potter was engaged by the Stadttheater St. Gallen in Switzerland, singing the roles of "Scarpia" in TOSCA, "Jochanaan" in SALOME, "Alfio" in CAVALLERIA RUSTICANA, "Ezio" in ATTILA, "Amonasro" in AIDA, and "Giorgio Germont" in LA TRAVIATA, among others.

Concert work continues to play an important role in Potter's career, with credits such as performances of Britten’s WAR REQUIEM in the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples, Italy, Walton's BELSHAZZAR'S FEAST with the São Paulo [Brazil] State Symphony and Chorus, Verdi’s MESSA DA REQUIEM and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, each with the Florida Orchestra, and several soloist appearances in New York City's Carnegie Hall [including the North American premiere of Sir David Willcock’s CEREMONY OF PSALMS, a five movement piece for baritone soloist, orchestra, and chorus.], the Italian premiere of Michael Torke’s MASS at the Teatro Massimo in Palermo, Haydn’s THE CREATION with the Elgin Choral Union in Illinois, and a concert of ROGERS & HAMMERSTEIN and LERNER & LOEWE favorites with the San Francisco Symphony.

In the Fall of 2000 Potter, his wife [Kimberly S Randall], and their son (then 18 months old), moved back to the United States, where he began his new career as a university professor.  He taught for five years in Indiana before joining the University of Central Florida in August of 2005, where he teaches voice and is the Director of UCF Opera.