Elaine Rinaldi, Founder and Artistic Director of Orchestra Miami, is a Miami native who has chosen to return home and reinvest in her community. Under her artistic supervision and direction, Orchestra Miami has performed high quality classical music concerts to literally thousands of people through its annual Free Outdoor Concerts and introduced over 30,000 school children to classical music through its collaboration with the MDCPS Cultural Passport Program and InSchool Performances. Critics have called her work “absolutely exceptional” (El Nuevo Herald). Of her work, Lawrence Budmen of the Miami Herald wrote “Rinaldi clearly has a penchant for offering interesting thematic programming and promising soloists” and Daniel Fernandez of El Nuevo Herald wrote, “Rinaldi is a conductor who marries her professionalism with an exquisite sensitivity”
In addition to her work with Orchestra Miami, Rinaldi is much in demand as a guest conductor. Her recent engagements have included her debuts in Bodrum, Turkey with La Serva Padrona and Il Giouco del Quadriglio, Stravinsky’s A Soldier’s Tale for the FIU Festival (Miami) , the world premiere of the Concerto for Guitar by Sergio Assad at the FIU GuitArt Festival (Miami), leading the annual Holiday Concert in Bryant Park for the New York City Opera, performances of The Magic Flute at Opera in the Ozarks, Don Giovanni at Opera Orlando, Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi at Mezzano Romantico Summer Festival (Fiera di Primiero, Italy) and sold-out performances of Don Giovanni at the Tri-Cities Opera. She was the Principal Guest Conductor at the Dicapo Opera Theatre from 2001-2006 and has led several tours for the National Lyric Opera, twice appeared as a guest conductor with the Albany Symphony for the Shaker Mountain Performing Arts Festival, and conducted performances of La Traviata for Island Opera Theater in Key West, FL. Rinaldi has held many positions as an Assistant and/or Cover Conductor in many of this country’s leading regional opera theaters. From 1997-2000, she held the positions of Resident Associate Conductor and Chorus Master at the Florida Grand Opera in Miami. Critics called her work with the chorus “exquisite”, and Tim Smith of the Ft, Lauderdale Sun Sentinel said “the chorus, under Elaine Rinaldi’s direction, gets better and better.”(La Boheme).
Her awards have included First Prize in The American Prize Ernst Bacon Award for the Performance of American Music, the Agnis Varis/Intercities Performing Arts grant, the League of American Orchestra’s mentorship with Joann Faletta, Finalist for the American Prize for Orchestral Conducting and Orchestra Performance, the Newton Swift Prize for Accompanying at the Mannes College of Music and the M. B. Byrd full tuition scholarship at the University of Miami Frost School of Music.
As a student and young professional, Rinaldi had the privilege of working with many of the world’s most important opera singers, accompanying extensively in their master classes and lessons. Several of the artists with whom she worked closely are Renato Capecchi, Nico Castel, Sherrill Milnes, Mignon Dunn, Renata Scotto, Juan Pons, Judith Blegen and Dodi Protero, as well as Franco Corelli, Sena Jurinacs, Theo Adam, Maestro Horst Stein, Dolores Ziegler and James King. This important work has contributed to her versatility and her status as one of the most sought-after vocal coaches in opera today. As an educator, Rinaldi has taught at many opera training programs, and given master classes at several universities throughout the United States. At the Miami Music Festival, she conducted performances of L’Incoronazione di Poppea and Die Zauberflöte, performances of Die Zauberflöte and Suor Angelica for Intermezzo Summer Opera Training Program, and led performances of Handel’s Orlando for BAYSOTI in San Francisco. Other coaching positions included Senior Coach at Opera in the Ozarks, Italian Recitativo Coach for the University of Miami’s Le Nozze di Figaro, running the Young Arts program and Summer Institute at Dicapo Opera, staff coach at the Martina Arroyo “Prelude to Performance” and Adjunct Professor in Vocal Coaching at the University of Miami from 2007-2015.
In addition to her work with Orchestra Miami, Ms. Rinaldi maintains an active presence on the stage as a chamber musician and recital accompanist, and works with some of the most recognizable names in the world of opera in her private coaching studio in New York City. Notable recital engagements have included performances with Metropolitan Opera stars Russell Thomas, Olga Makarina, Eglise Gutierrez, Elizabeth Caballero and Elaine Alvarez. Recently, she accompanied soprano Yunah Lee in a recital tour of Japan and has been a favorite guest artist with the Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival.
La Forza del Destino
Eduardo Villa, tenor
Eglise Gutiérrez, Soprano
Rigoletto: Act I Duet
Elizabeth Blake: Giovanna, Eglise Gutierrez: Gilda, Gregory Schmidt: Duke
"Trouble in Tahiti"
SOUTH FLORIDA CLASSICAL REVIEW | "AIRBORNE SYMPHONY BY MARC BLITZSTEIN
“Rinaldi led a well-rehearsed, strongly played and sung reading of this epic creation. The large orchestral forces, including a full wind and brass contingent, played with flexibility and the male chorus voiced the airmen’s songs in vigorous, strong tones. Rinaldi brought out the score’s Bernstein and Copland influences and exercised strong control over the massed forces…. Kudos to Elaine Rinaldi for presenting a one-of-a-kind concert and for reviving two worthy scores that would have been unlikely to ever have been otherwise heard in South Florida—or anywhere else.”
SOUTH FLORIDA CLASSICAL REVIEW | BEETHOVEN SYMPHONY NO. 6 “PASTORALE”
“Under the direction of Elaine Rinaldi, the orchestra’s founder and artistic director, the ensemble gave a verdant, lively performance of one of Beethoven’s happiest, most tranquil works….. Rinaldi showed firm control over the orchestra, bringing the ensemble to a precise but unforced deceleration in the opening theme.”
SOUTH FLORIDA CLASSICAL REVIEW | "ATONEMENT" BY MARVIN DAVID LEVY
“Artistic director Elaine Rinaldi drew resonant string tone and strength from the brass in a relaxed traversal of this popular work. (Bernstein’s Overture to Candide)…..Rinaldi brought clarity to the instrumental textures, giving equal weight to the acerbic and songful elements. (Levy- Canto de los Marranos)… Rinaldi led her forces with skill and fine attention to changing tempo and gradations of volume. (Levy- Masada) Kudos to Rinaldi for presenting this important score in a strongly prepared, well-drilled performance. It was a fitting memorial to a significant American composer with a distinctive voice.”
THE MIAMI HERALD | AMAHL AND THE NIGHT VISITORS
“A highlight of the performance was the work of Orchestra Miami, conducted by Elaine Rinaldi. In addition to providing sympathetic support to the singers, the orchestra shined when performing on its own, with rich string tone and poignant wind playing in passages such as the wistful music that accompanies Amahl’s mother as she tucks him in for the night.”
EL NUEVO HERALD | PORGY AND BESS 75TH ANNIVERSARY TOUR
“But not all the credit for this performance is taken by the touring company; Orchestra Miami and its director, Elaine Rinaldi delivered the beautiful and difficult music of Gershwin impeccably, with extraordinary idiomatic taste and without losing sight of appropriate support to the voices. Rinaldi is also an excellent choral director.”
SOUTH FLORIDA CLASSICAL REVIEW | MIAMI HIGH AT 90
“The program proved to be one of Orchestra Miami’s most successful showings to date with a consistently high level of orchestral performance and finely attuned leadership by Rinaldi. In the opening Overture to Die Fledermaus by Johann Strauss, Jr., the strings’ unanimity and strong attack were immediately evident. Rinaldi captured much of the fizzy atmosphere in Strauss’s distinctive brand of three-quarter time. The program concluded with a strong performance of Dvořák’s Symphony No. 9 (“From the New World”). There was a fine sense of ebb and flow in Rinaldi’s swiftly paced traversal of the first movement. The lower strings excelled with depth of tone in the Adagio introduction. A spaciously phrased Largo and folk-infused Scherzo set the stage for a high energy finale. Clarion brass sounded the iconic theme and Rinaldi kept the tension flowing right up to the soft final bars.”