Our Team

Melody Chang Heaton

Melody Chang Heaton is a multi-faceted performer, arts administrator, and voice coach experienced in a wide variety of disciplines including opera, musical theater, and classical music.
Melody was previously the Director of Marketing & Managing Director of Inland Northwest Opera. She serves as the President of the Board of Directors for Communities in Schools of Spokane County and an advisory council member for the Idaho Central Spokane Valley Performing Arts Center (currently under construction). She has previously volunteered extensively as a board member for the Spokane Symphony, Asian Pacific Islander Coalition Spokane Chapter (APIC Spokane), and Spokane Arts. In addition, she previously served Director of Marketing and Communications for Canto Vocal Programs, with programs located in France, Romania, Croatia, and the US.
In recent years, Ms. Chang Heaton has been seen onstage with the Spokane Symphony, Inland Northwest Opera, and Spokane Valley Summer Theatre. She resides in Spokane, WA with her husband, two cats, and fleet of old European cars. 


Nina Yoshida Nelsen

Hailed as a “richly powerful singing actress” (Broadway World), Nina Yoshida Nelsen captivates audiences throughout North America and Europe with her world class voice and magnetic stage presence.
Notable engagements include Suzuki in Madama Butterfly with Utah Opera, Atlanta Opera, Opera Santa Barbara, Portland Opera, Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice, Sarasota Opera, New Orleans Opera, Manitoba Opera, and New York City Opera; Khanh in Bound and Woman in The Memory Stone with Houston Grand Opera; Mama in An American Dream at Lyric Opera of Chicago, Anchorage Opera, and Seattle Opera; Mother in Amahl and the Night Visitors at New York’s Avery Fisher Hall; Handel’s Messiah with Nashville Symphony Orchestra and Santa Barbara Chorale; and Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with Santa Fe Concert Association, Southwest Florida Symphony and at Carnegie Hall.
Ms. Nelsen is a graduate of Boston University and the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia.

Nicholas Phan

Described by the Boston Globe as “one of the world’s most remarkable singers,” American tenor Nicholas Phan is increasingly recognized as an artist of distinction. Praised for his keen intelligence, captivating stage presence and natural musicianship, he performs regularly with the world’s leading orchestras and opera companies. Also an avid recitalist, in 2010 he co-founded the Collaborative Arts Institute of Chicago (CAIC) to promote art song and vocal chamber music, where he serves as artistic director.Phan has appeared with many of the leading orchestras in the North America and Europe, including the Cleveland Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, Boston Symphony, Chicago Symphony, San Francisco Symphony, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, National Symphony, Atlanta Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Philharmonia Baroque, Boston Baroque, Les Violons du Roy, BBC Symphony, English Chamber Orchestra, Strasbourg Philharmonic, Royal Philharmonic, Philharmonia Orchestra of London, and the Lucerne Symphony.

Board Members

Robert Feng
Bass, Librettist

Tiffany Chang

André Chiang

Jeannette Lee
Mezzo-soprano, Arts Administrator

Jeremy Chan
Pianist, Vocal Coach

Samina Aslam

Advisory Board

Phil Chan, founder Final Bow for Yellowface
Khori Dastoor, General Director and CEO Houston Grand Opera
Adam Diegel, tenor and AOA co-founder
Priti Gandhi, arts administrator
Kelly Kuo, conductor
Indira Mahajan, soprano
Matthew Ozawa, stage director and Chief Artistic Administrative Officer,
                                   Lyric Opera Chicago
Rodell Rosel, tenor
Huang Ruo, composer
Kamala Sankaram, composer
Justin Werner, founder and president of Stratagem Artists 
Mo Zhou, stage director