MEET THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Christine Flasch grew up the sixth of an artistically inclined family of eight in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Beginning with dance lessons at 5, piano at 6, voice at 12, and organ at 13, she had logged many hours of training by the time she reached high school. Already inclined toward teaching and accompanying, she taught a number of piano and voice students, and continued in the same capacity in college and throughout her years in graduate school as a teaching fellow in voice at Syracuse University. Flasch received a master’s degree in vocal performance on a full scholarship.
Flasch made her operatic debut with the Syracuse Opera in her first year of grad school while concurrently serving two years as an Opera Apprentice with The Chautauqua Institution in upstate New York, then moved immediately to New York City where she made her debut with the Bronx Opera in the taxing role of “Zerlina” in Auber’s Fra Diavolo. Her performance garnered unanimous critical acclaim: “…a soprano aria to tax the resources of a Sutherland. In that fierce soprano role Christine Flasch proved a major vocal and dramatic talent”. New York Daily News
After singing leading roles throughout the country under management for twelve years, and in order to be home with her young son, Justin, Flasch joined the Metropolitan Opera Chorus where she sang several comprimario roles, and worked with the leading singers, conductors, and stage directors in the world.
Desiring to stretch her wings, Flasch returned to the Milwaukee area and quickly joined the rosters of several colleges and universities in Wisconsin and Illinois, including the prestigious Chicago College of Performing Arts/Roosevelt University where she was a member of the voice faculty. She was recruited to build Music by the Lake, a summer music festival under the auspices of Aurora University in Illinois in 2000, and developed the festival into a highly successful program of eight concerts each season. In 2014 the festival welcomed more than 10,000 patrons to the summer performances at George Williams College’s Ferro Pavilion on Geneva Lake.
As part of the summer line up, Flasch honed her skills as a conductor by producing and directing thirteen years of opera, operetta and musical theatre productions. She welcomed leading artists from across the United States, as well as emerging young artists from Chicago, Milwaukee and Madison. Her productions drew enthusiastic audiences from throughout the Midwest and helped launch the careers of hundreds of talented young singers. Her annual Christmas concerts to “sold out” crowds drew the finest instrumentalists and singers to the campus for ten seasons.
Flasch left her position as Executive Director at MBTL to dedicate her energies toward building top notch musical programs in her own community of Franklin. She will lead the Tri-state area’s finest instrumentalists and vocalists in a broad variety of musical concerts as she seeks to build the emerging Southwestern suburbs into a new – and unexpected – arts destination.
Flasch's instrumental conducting credits include operatic and concert performances with The Florentine Opera’s performances for the young with the Waukesha Symphony (The Magic Flute), Carroll University Cosi fan tutte, The Priates of Penzance, Die Fledermaus, and thirteen years as conductor of the Music by the Lake summer operas and annual Christmas concerts. Major works included La Boheme, The New Moon, Madama Butterfly, La Traviata, Music in the Air, Brigadoon, and Gala of Stars, a medley of forty selections from opera and musical theatre. She has nurtured the careers of hundreds of gifted young singers, many of whom are currently enjoying successful careers nationwide.
LETTER FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
The fine arts have nurtured the souls of audiences throughout the ages. When populations and cultures were in political and social distress (as they are today), hope, relief, inspiration and enlightenment were always found in the arts. Since 2008, producers have seen a slow and steady return to financial optimism and support for the arts. It has never been a better time to invest in music!
Children are the future of live music and culture in our society. I would like to dedicate the remaining years of my professional career to presenting fine arts programs that will enrich the general population, and the next generation of concert goers, our children and grandchildren. High quality musical programs require a community’s dedication and dollars. I hope you will join me in this worthy calling by supporting The Southwestern Suburban Symphony. Investing in the arts pays great dividends!
Christine Flasch - Executive Director
The Southwestern Suburban Symphony