In October of 2010, she and artistic partner Bonnie Bogovich composed, produced and performed their own original multi-media opera entitled Evenings in Quarantine: The Zombie Opera, which Rishel also costumed. Funded by generous grants from the Sprout Fund and the Heinz Endowments, the opera enjoyed remarkable success during it’s sold-out debut, prompting encore performance runs for two more consecutive seasons.
Liz teamed up with Mz. Bogovich and Steam’s Sean Lenhart along with a team of other opera singers in 2014 to produce a parody opera cabaret entitled Super Smash Opera, in which they re-lyricise opera’s most beloved tunes to fit an original plot about video game characters competing in a fighting tournament. The project debuted at MAGfest in National Harbor, MD, and enjoyed considerable success in the form of audience attendance, YouTube views, and coverage on Facebook and Twitter. The team performed the production twice more in Pittsburgh, joined on the stage by the rest of the Steam members, William Strom and Jordan Speranzo, in the summer of 2015.
Liz often appears as a soloist for local groups and projects, most recently in Benjamin Britten’s Ceremony of Carols, with Resonance Works, and on the new digital album Materia: Final Fantasy VII Remixed.
Liz frequently designs costumes for Opera Theater of Pittsburgh, notably in their spring and Summerfest productions of The Shining Brow, which was also performed at Falling Water, The Jumping Frog of Calaveras County, and The True Story of the Three Little Pigs. She also occasionally designs costumes for Resonance Works, having worked on Amahl and the Night Visitors, and Trouble in Tahiti. When she is not performing, Rishel teaches private voice lessons at Johnstonbaugh’s Music Center in Gibsonia. She frequently sews for business or pleasure, occasionally working with independent filmmakers and cosplayers. Her favorite roles include The Queen of the Night (The Magic Flute), Yum-Yum (The Mikado), Mabel (Pirates of Penzance), Frasquita (Carmen), The Five-Year-Old (The Proposal), and Antonia (Man of LaMancha).
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