Located in St. Petersburg, FL, Sunshine City Opera specializes in performing new and less-frequently heard opera and musical theater repertoire. This professional, non-profit company presents only the highest quality productions.

Over the course of our inaugural season (2016-2017), SCO forged exciting collaborations with the Studio @ 620, St. Pete Arts Alliance, St. Pete History Museum and the AARP of Tampa Bay! Both our inaugural performance (Opera Sampler) and our Hispanic Heritage Concert played to sold out audiences, and we garnered three articles in the Tampa Bay Times along with other mentions and highlights in Creative Loafing and 83 Degrees Media, and a radio appearance on Art in Your Ear

Erin Huelskamp, Artistic Director
Eunmi Ko, Music Director and Pianist

ERIN HUELSKAMP, artistic director

Energetic, hardworking and enigmatic, Erin Huelskamp composes dramatic and comical music that often reflects a philosophical twist on her daily experiences. Co-founder and executive director emeritus of the Juventas New Music Ensemble, Huelskamp voraciously promotes new music – especially by amazing unknown composers – and she strives to draw ever new audiences to the burgeoning sounds of the 21st century. Marked by Chamber Music Today as “the only realistic response to the the state of affairs in this country,” Huelskamp combines entrepreneurship and music to motivate change.

Huelskamp’s compositions elicit numerous awards and performances. Noted as “startling revelatory” and “electrifying”, accolades include the Ellen Taaffe Zwilich Prize, special recognition from the New York Youth Symphony First Music 23, and third place at the Music Teachers National Association Student Composition Competition. Huelskamp has the privilege of performances both nationally and internationally, including such venues as L’Ecole Normale de Musique in Paris, France, Studzinski Recital Hall at Bowdoin College in Maine, the Interlochen Acadamy of the Arts in Michigan, Bard University in New York, the University of Missouri-Columbia, Harvard University, and many more. In June 2016, Huelskamp will serve a residency at the Mid-Missouri Composers Symposium where she will continue work on her second opera The Ten-Block Walk.

Shortly after the completion of her first opera The Year of the Serpent, Huelskamp delved into directing theatrical works. Her productions of The Magic Mirror and Light and Power with Juventas won the American Prize in opera. Light and Power also won second place in the Professional Division of the National Opera Association’s video competition. Little Women with the Wakefield Repertory Theatre won a DASH award for Best Actress, and I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change with the TCAN Players was nominated for a DASH award for Best Ensemble. Her setting of Der Zwerg with OperaHub took special notice in The Boston Globe. Additional, favorite directing credits include Candide with Harvard University’s Lowell House Opera, Aida The Musical, Thoroughly Modern Millie, and Legally Blonde The Musical with the Performing Arts Connection, Company with the TCAN Players, The Music Man with the Winthrop Playmakers, and You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown with Beyond the Fourth Wall. Huelskamp served as Assistant Stage Director for The Two Gentlemen of Verona with the Shakespeare on the Common production with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company.

Trained as a classical dancer for 16 years, Huelskamp began composing at the age of ten with no musical training. In 2000 she pursued studies in music at the University of Missouri-Columbia where she earned a Bachelor of Music in both composition and flute performance; she studied composition with Thomas McKenney and Stefan Freund and flute with Steven Geibel. In 2007, Huelskamp completed a Master of Music in Composition from the Boston Conservatory, where she studied with Andy Vores, Dana Brayton, and later Ken Ueno. She studied acting with Bobbie Steinbach. Huelskamp served as music theory faculty at Boston College for four years. Now residing in St. Petersburg, FL, she is embracing her new role as Artistic Director for Sunshine City Opera. (www.erinhuelskamp.com)

EUNMI KO, music director and pianist
Recitalist, piano pedagogue, and chamber musician, pianist Eunmi Ko recently appeared in the Weill Hall at Carnegie Hall, Chautauqua Music Festival, Festival Cervantino Internacional in Mexico, Music Center of Christchurch in New Zealand, Real Conservatorio Superior de Musica de Madrid in Spain, among others. Praised for original interpretations and abundance of piano technique (New York Concert Review), she performs a wide range of piano repertoire including premieres, lesser-known piano works, and standard piano repertoire. As an educator, Ko communicates with young pianists through recitals and master classes throughout the US, Asia, and Europe. Her 2016 professional engagements include solo recitals and master classes in Thailand, Hong Kong, Italy, and South Korea.

She is co-founder and co-director of the new music ensemble Strings & Hammers, which has the unusual instrumentation of violin, piano, and double bass. Each year, Strings and Hammers collaborates with emerging composers and gives premieres nationally and internationally.

Ko holds MM and DMA degrees from the Eastman School of Music. Currently, she teaches at the University of South Florida as Assistant Professor of Piano and serves as co-advisor of the New-Music Consortium at USF. Since 2013, she is on the faculty at the Rebecca Penneys Piano Festival. In 2011, she was the Assistant Director of Women in Music Festival (Rochester, NY), which hosted 35 composers and involved over 150 performers annually.
Wikimedia Commons, FM 98.5 CKWR, KPFT 90.1HD2 and KTRU, Radio ArtsIndonesia, WMNF, WUSF, and WXXI have broadcasted her performances. (www.eunmiko.com)