The Callas Award, to be presented at a dinner on May 26, honors a singer who made his or her debut with the company during the past season. Nominees are chosen by a panel of critics and Dallas Opera staff members; subscribers vote on the winner.
The nominees are soprano Latonia Moore, who sang MicaêŠla in Carmen; mezzo-soprano Ekaterina Semenchuk (the title role in Carmen); tenor Robert Brubaker (Laca in Jenufa); tenor John Matz (B.F. Pinkerton in Madame Butterfly); Baritone David Kempster (Sharpless in Madame Butterfly); and bass-baritone Donato Di Stefano (Don Magnifico in La Cenerentola).
"The season just ended was filled with wonderful productions and a series of brilliant performances," said Jonathan Pell, the company's director of artistic administration. "We introduced audiences to a phenomenal group of international artists never [before] seen on the Dallas Opera stage."
The award, presented this year for the 14th time, is named for soprano Maria Callas, who gave a concert to inaugurate the company in 1957. The winner receives a crystal medallion etched with Callas's image, created by the Tiffany company. Previous winners include tenor Jerry Hadley, mezzo-soprano Cecilia Bartoli, and mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves.
The company mailed ballots to its subscribers this week.