The Queen of the Night

by Submission to SDJJ August 22, 2016


rachel opera“I still can’t believe I was really there, performing in the Tuscia Opera Festival!” says Rachel Dovsky.

This summer, the 17-year-old from Encinitas, Calif., performed the role of Queen of the Night in Mozart’s opera, “The Magic Flute.” Accompanied by the Wuhan Philharmonic Orchestra from China, it was a dream come true for the young dramatic soprano.

“I really enjoyed getting into character of the evil stepmother, a role I have never explored before.”

As an emerging artist with International Lyric Academy of Rome and Viterbo, the lyric coloratura soprano mesmerized audiences in her role as the Queen of the Night. Their Italian tour included performances in Viterbo, Perugia, Sorrento, and Tarquinia. The musical performances were warmly received by these Italian audiences.

Last February, Claudio Ferri, an agent for the International Lyric Academy (ILA) of Rome and Viterbo, traveled to major cities in the U.S. to audition soloists for the summer opera program. On a whim, Rachel’s vocal teacher asked her to come to the audition “just for the experience of singing for an opera impresario.” To everyone’s great surprise, he offered Rachel the opportunity to join ILA as an operatic soloist.

Her lyric coloratura soprano was a perfect fit for the role of “Queen of the Night,” a role usually given to highly experienced vocalists. He noted her unusual strength and power in the upper register as well as a natural feel for Italian enunciation. Claudio required all the soloists to know their roles perfectly before arriving in Italy. Over the next four months, Rachel and her gifted instructor, Rebecca Steinke, concentrated on her demanding operatic solos from the Magic Flute:” Der Holle Roche” and “O Zitre Nicht.” Her preparation paid off at the Rancho Bernardo Chorale spring concert at the Poway Center for the Performing Arts. Rachel’s performance of “Der Holle Roche” was awarded the top prize.

Rachel graduated from the San Dieguito Academy last June and is on her way to a gap year study and community service program in Israel. Rachel has earned several music and academic awards including The Oceanside Cultural Arts Foundation Scholarship, The Eric Langdon and Diana Monzeglio Memorial Scholarship for the Arts, the Roy Risner Scholarship, Chapman University Presidential Scholarship, LeTip of Carlsbad Scholarship, the Optimist International Essay Contest National Scholarship, and semi-finalist for the Kyoto Prize and the Hal Leonard Vocal competition.

Rachel and her brother David have been regulars for many years at Seacrest Village, singing and playing piano informally for the senior residents.

Rachel will be giving her farewell concert with gifted piano accompanist Fontaine Lang. The concert is sponsored by the Katherine Tailor Foundation, an organization that promotes emerging artists. The concert will take place on Sunday, September 4th at 2 p.m. To be included in the guest list, contact The Katherine Tailor Foundation at 760-331-7721 or email


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