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A Love Duet: Tenor Stephen Costello and Soprano Ailyn Perez

Soprano Ailyn Perez and tenor Stephen Costello met as students at AVA.

First they were students at AVA. During their studies, they were companions. Eventually they performed together on stage.  Then came love, and later, the altar. All because of opera. And we can say, "We knew them when."

Both together and separately, soprano Ailyn Perez (her first name is pronounced "Eileen") and her husband, tenor Stephen Costello, are considered to be two of America's fastest-rising opera stars.  Both are Richard Tucker Award winners - he in 2009, she in 2012. Costello made his Met debut in 2007; Perez will make her Met debut this coming February. Both have extensive schedules performing together and on their own. 

And it all started at Philadelphia's Academy of Vocal Arts. Over the years, we've had many chances to speak with them as their careers have blossomed, and they've become great friends of Crossover and WRTI.

Jill Pasternak speaks with Stephen and Ailyn about their new CD, Love Duets. The recording features both stellar operatic duets and great love songs from the Broadway stage.  The conversation will be interspersed with music from the CD, which they've dedicated to the memory of Richard Tucker.

Crossover with Jill Pasternak airs on Saturday mornings at 11:30 am on WRTI-FM, with an encore on Friday evenings at 7 pm on WRTI-HD2.  Both airings can be heard on the All-Classical web stream at wrti.org.


It's his parents' fault. For Joe's sixth birthday, they gave him a transistor radio. All of a sudden, their dreams of having a doctor or lawyer (or even a fry cook) in the family went down the tubes.