Saludo de Drina Rendic en el concierto de la soprano chilena Yaritza Véliz en Washington DC

La presidenta del Capítulo Chileno del Museo Nacional de la Mujer en las Artes agradeció a todas las organizaciones y personas que hicieron posible la realización del concierto de la joven soprano nacional en el Performance Hall del National Museum of Women in the Arts. El concierto se realizó el miércoles 3 de junio y contó con la presencia del Embajador de Chile en Estados Unidos, Juan Gabriel Valdés. Compartimos con ustedes el discurso en inglés.


Dear Ambassador to the USA Mr. Juan Gabriel Valdes and Antonia

Dear Ambassador to the OAS Mr. Juan Pablo Lira

Dear Susan Sterling, Director of the National Museum of Women in the Arts

Dear Ilene Gutman,International Director of the NMWA

Dear Mary Mochary , Benefactor and Member of the Board of the NMWA

Dear International Committee Presidents and Members of the NMWA

Dear Alejandro Wolff former Ambassador of the USA in Chile

Chile Delegation

Dear friends and supporters

As most of you are aware, our mission as the Chile Committee of this outstanding and unique organization which is the National Museum of Women in the Arts, is to champion WOMEN in all disciplines of the arts. When we launched our committee, exactly 2 years ago in the presence of a delegation from the Museum and with the attendance of the then Ambassador of the USA in Chile Alejandro Wolff and his wife Alexandra, (here with us tonight), I don’t think we realized the amount of support we would encounter in the community. I am not going to go into any details now. It is enough to mention that today we have a potent Board of Directors with 11 very committed members, an Advisory Board of 15 and 135 associated members.

After careful consideration we decided to take a fresh approach to our endeavors and organize a Lyrical Singing Contest for Women by undertaking a partnership with the School of Music of one of our most renowned private universities: Universidad Mayor.

In January 2014 with the help of our media partners and communications advisors we organized a national contest which drew 47 participants, all Chilean Women Singers. A very outstanding jury made out of 7 prominent national musicians   and experts in the field were summoned and the contest was on its way. All judges worked probono and had to review 3 recordings for each one of the 47 participants. In that way 12 contestants were selected and a Semifinal Concert took place at the renowned Corp Artes Theatre to finally arrive at the Finals on September 30th, 2014, where Yaritza Veliz was selected among the 6 finalists.

I must say Yaritza is only 23 years old and comes from the little mining town of Andacollo in the región of Coquimbo in the north part of our country. She was discovered by a Chilean tenor of worldwide renown named Tito Beltrán and has been helped on her way up by several individuals and organizations that are represented here with us today. Namely the  Friends of our  Opera Theatre, the Teatro Municipal,  presided by Eliana Simián and  specially by  Belinda James de Luksic.

Thank you to all of those that have journeyed to WDC from Chile specially for this occasion. All of these travelers have recognized the importance of supporting women in the field of classical singing by accompanying us to the culmination of this contest.

I would like to ask the Chile delegation to stand up for a second so that the audience will know who they are and can approach them later.

We are especially indebted to our partner Universidad Mayor in Santiago whose Director of international Relations Rene Lara is here with us. All of the technical details of this contest were carefully prepared and executed   by them along many months.

A very warm recognition to the Mustakis Foundation which specializes in discovering new talents specially in vulnerable youths  and is  represented here by Daphne Anastassiou and her cousin Alejandra,  members of the family that runs the foundation.

I must add that Daphne undertook the task of coaching Yaritza in her stage presence and emotional fortitude  to endure the trying circumstances of traveling abroad for the first time.

Likewise a very warm recognition to Chubb Chile Insurance and their trust in us especially to Maria Teresa Muñoz and our member Carmen Cuellar.

Dr. Gaston Ormazabal president of the prestigious Hildegard Behrens Foundation and a prominent scientist and professor at the University of Luxemburg and at Columbia University has also traveled down from NYC to be with us. This Foundation is the donor of the first place in this contest. To him our gratitude and love.

A special recognition to Yaritza´s voice teacher, the famous Chilean soprano and singing professor at University of Chile,  Carmen Luisa Letelier,  who has come to both  NYC and Washington to  be by her side in this special moment of her budding career.

A warm thank you to Nurys Olivares, master degree in singing who also traveled to Washington and has been helping out with this concert´s repertoire and Yartiza´s preparation.

It is with great emotion that I would like to recognize the indefatigable work of Teruca Martínez, member of our board and director of this project in Chile for her tremendous effort both in terms of funding and time. Although I am aware of the saying that nobody is irreplaceable, in this case I must say that her work could not have been undertaken by any other person.

Likewise thank you to Gloria Garafulich , International Director of our Board   and founding member of our committee  who has coordinated all details of this production here in the US.

It is very appropriate at this moment  to extend our gratitude to the Saieh Group, owners of  La Tercera newspaper, magazines and radio stations, our media partners  and Corp Artes Theatre   represented here by its  President Catalina Saieh and her husband Pablo Gonzalez. Likewise our recognition to Rolando Santos Director of CNN Chile which coverage was instrumental in achieving our success

I could go on and on. We deeply appreciate the work of Alejanda Castro whose contribution has been vital as fashion advisor to Yaritzá. She found the Chilean designer, Daniela Bustamente who has donated her dresses both here and in NYC. And the famous make-up artist in NYC, Taly Weisberg. Our communication experts Cimagen in Chile. Our cultural attacheé Javiera Parada and her efficient coordination with the Embassy of Chile.

Last but not least a very very very warm recognition to the generosity of a person, an opera buff, connoisseur  and benefactor,  who lives  in NYC and was willing to travel to  the south of Chile just to listen  to Yaritzas first concert at Teatro del Lago in Frutillar. He has agreed to help us out with the explanatory notes of each piece that Yaritza will sing for us in a few minutes.  Our eternal gratitude to Richard Strother.

I am sure that Yaritza will have a promising career due to her talent, had work and blessed star and that the whole world will know her international stardom was launched here in Washington DC at the NMWA Performance Hall.

It is our pleasure and honor to be part of the significant mission of this Museum and its core values of freshness, openness and championing of Women in the Arts.