Music Alumni Selected for New York Lyric Opera Theatre

John Cossio '16
Jacklyn Klimczak ’15

Aug. 15, 2016

BLOOMINGTON, Ill.— Two Illinois Wesleyan University School of Music young alumni spent part of their summers singing on some of the world’s most prestigious stages, including Carnegie Hall and the Lincoln Center.

Jacklyn Klimczak ’15 and John Cossio ’16 were both selected for the month-long New York Lyric Opera Theatre (NYLOT) Summer Music Program. The program provides performance and educational opportunities for young classical singers. Both Klimczak and Cossio participated in lessons, coaching and master classes and received consultations with New York agents.

“The most valuable part of the program were the connections I made, with coaches, directors and agents,” said Klimczak. “Equally as important are the connections with other young singers based in New York and elsewhere that I know I can continue to contact and use as resources for years to come.”

Klimczak, a soprano, played the role of “Fatime” in Gluck’s The Duped Cadi at the National Opera Center, sang excerpts from Puccini’s Suor Angelica at Lincoln Center, and sang a duet at Carnegie Hall.

Magic Flute
The Magic Flute cast, including John Cossio, performed at Lincoln Center.

“I never imagined I would sing at Lincoln Center or Carnegie Hall at such a young age, but this program makes it a reality,” said Klimczak. “Coaches and directors expected you to be well prepared for all roles assigned. If you work hard, you will find yourself offered extra opportunities and roles, which is incredible for a young soprano.”

Klimczak graduated cum laude from Illinois Wesleyan with a Bachelor of Music degree in 2015. At Illinois Wesleyan she was a winner in the School of Music’s Concerto-Aria competition, performing as soloist with the Illinois Wesleyan Civic Orchestra. This fall she continues her studies at New York University Steinhardt to earn a Master of Music in Vocal Performance with a concentration in classical voice. She will also begin the advanced certificate program in vocal pedagogy at NYU and teach private voice lessons for non-majors as an adjunct faculty member.

Cossio, a baritone, was cast as “Papageno” in The Magic Flute at the Lincoln Center. He also sang the role of “Schaunard” in a concert version of La bohème and the role of “Masetto” in an abridged version of Don Giovanni, both performed at the National Opera Center. He also performed in an ensemble presenting a concert of opera scenes at Carnegie Hall. Cossio received a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance in 2016 and was also a winner in Illinois Wesleyan’s Concerto-Aria competition, performing as a soloist with the Illinois Wesleyan Civic Orchestra.