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Steve Vasta

After receiving a liberal arts degree at Columbia University, STEPHEN FRANCIS VASTA has spent much of the last twenty years as a conductor, vocal coach, and keyboardist, both with companies in and around his native New York and with prominent regional performing arts organizations.
In New York, he conducted The Accomplish'd Maid - a contemporaneous English-language version of Gaetano Piccinni's La buona figliuola - and Cimarosa's Il matrimonio segreto with the Vineyard Theatre Opera, subsequently bringing the latter production to Berkshire Opera in Massachusetts; Cosi fan tutte, Fidelio, and Un ballo in maschera for the Brooklyn Repertory Opera; Don Giovanni, La serva padrona, and La Traviata for Lighthouse Opera; and two seasons of Herbert, Romberg, and Friml operettas for the Light Opera of New York. Other conducting credits include Die Fledermaus, The Merry Widow, and The Mikado for the touring company Opera Northeast; Orpheus in the Underworld at Indiana's Ball State University, as Assistant Professor of Theatre; Handel's Rinaldo at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville; and Carmen at the BeRleayre Festival Opera in upstate New York. He was also chorus master for the New Jersey Association for Verismo Opera for two seasons, and has assisted Sarah Caldwell, Cal Stewart Kellogg, Anton Coppola, and Gunther Bauer-Schenk. On the concert platform, he has made guest appearances with the Filharmonie Hradec Králové, Czechia.
Mr. Vasta is equally adept as a conductor of musical theatre, with extensive credits including Damn Yankees with Jamie Farr at the Cape Playhouse, Massachusetts; Godspell at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival; Camelot at Alabama Shakespeare Festival; The Best Little W****house in Texas at Ball State University; Oh! Coward off-Broadway in New York; and the 1992-3 international tour of Peter Pan throughout the U.S., Canada, and East Asia.
An accomplished classical accompanist, Mr. Vasta has appeared in that capacity at venues including New York's Weill Recital Hall and the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, DC. As a guest coach, he gave vocal master classes for the Arkansas chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS), and was the staff pianist for the International Workshop for Conductors for two years.
He has been reviewing professionally since 1993, when Stereophile magazine tapped him for a repertoire survey (Mahler's Second Symphony) on six weeks' notice, and where he returned as a Contributing Editor in early 2020. He was a regular contributor to Opera News for over twenty-five years, until its recent demise; he also wrote for Listener magazine, and has written for several websites, including Positive Feedback (, the Hans Rott website (, and Naturlaut, the Chicago Mahlerites' quarterly (at
Currently Mr. Vasta serves on the faculty of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in New York.

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