Our Core Team

Marshall Pynkoski

Co-Artistic Director, Opera Atelier

Marshall Pynkoski’s fascination with the music, theatre and dance of the 17th and 18th centuries began in classes with the late Leonard Crainford and John Marshall, respectively Chairman and Major Examiner, Royal Academy of Dancing. Early in his professional career he received a contract to dance for one year at the famous Moulin Rouge in Paris. There with Jeannette Zingg, he was able to undertake an in-depth study of Baroque opera, ballet and drama, working from original documents housed in archives of the Bibliothèque Nationale and the Paris Opera. This was supplemented by private study with renowned baroque dramaturge, Professor Dene Barnett, studies with baroque dance expert Wendy Hilton and with Bournonville ballet specialist, Sandra Caverly.

Since founding Opera Atelier with his wife Jeannette, Mr. Pynkoski has won numerous awards including the distinction of Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the Government of France and the Toronto Arts Award. For three years he was a principal guest instructor at the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles, collaborating with Marc Minkowski and Les Musiciens de Louvre. Opera Atelier’s acclaimed production of Dido and Aeneas played in the Royal Theatre of the Château de Versailles as well as at the BBC Proms and throughout Europe. Opera Atelier has introduced Baroque opera to Asia where productions of Lully, Purcell, and Mozart have been enthusiastically received throughout Japan, Singapore, and Korea.

Mr. Pynkoski has collaborated on several films including the award-winningThe Sorceress (featuring Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Christopher Hogwood with The Academy of Ancient Music, Artists of Atelier Ballet and dancers from The Dutch National Ballet), Master Peter’s Puppet Show and Inspired By Bachfeaturing YoYo Ma, all with Rhombus Media.  A documentary (produced by Docutainment) on Opera Atelier’s production of Lully’s Persée aired on CBC Television in December 2004, while the full length Persée aired on BRAVO in September, 2005.

In March 2003, Time Magazine recognized Mr. Pynkoski as one of Canada’s Best in Music. Most recently, Mr. Pynkoski received the Muriel Sherrin Award for outstanding contribution to music in Toronto.

Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg

Co-Artistic Director, Opera Atelier

Canadian dancer and choreographer, Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg, has performed internationally in classical ballet, modern dance and national/historical dance.  Her training took place at The Royal Academy of Dancing in London, England and in Copenhagen, Denmark.

As a young dancer Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg relocated to Paris, France in order to undertake in-depth studies of Baroque dance from original source material.  During this period she danced at the Moulin Rouge to subsidize her studies.  The study of historical dance styles was supplemented by attendance for four consecutive summers at the International Early Dance Seminar in Baltimore, Maryland.   Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg received a Chalmers Performing Arts Training Award to continue her studies of the historic Danish style with Sandra Caverly.

Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg, with Marshall Pynkoski, are the founding directors of Opera Atelier, now a respected opera and dance company on the world stage.  In her role as choreographer and dancer, Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg has created a body of work unique in its historical authenticity and detail, and has introduced modern audiences to the beauty of 17th and 18thcentury dance forms.

Highlights of Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg’s career include choreographing and dancing in all of Opera Atelier’s productions in Toronto, New York, Cleveland, the BBC Proms in London, England, the Royal Opera House at Versailles, France, the Houston Grand Opera, and on tour in Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Singapore, Japan and Korea.  She played the lead in Rhombus Media’s production of Manuel De Falla’s “Master Peter’s Puppet Show”.  Also for Rhombus, Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg choreographed the dance ensembles for The Artists of Atelier Ballet, the Dutch National Ballet and the Scapino Ballet of Rotterdam, and starred opposite Dame Kiri Te Kanawa in “The Sorceress.”  Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg acted as principal guest instructor at the Centre de Musique Baroque de Versailles from 1993 to 1996.  She has revived important historical dance works by Handel, Mozart, Lully and Rameau, in collaboration with world-class conductors including Andrew Parrott, Marc Minkowski and Hervé Niquet.



“With each successive staging, this baroque opera-ballet company under director Marshall Pynkoski becomes more adept at playing within the parameters of the 17th– and  18th-century aesthetic that has become its trademark.”
– Paula Citron, The Globe and Mail (October 25, 2007)

Top Banner: Opera Atelier's 25th Anniversary Photo Credit: Bruce Zinger 2010; Artists: Ben Cruchley,Leonie Gagne, Juri Hiraoka, Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg, Patrick Lavoie, James Leja, Jennifer Nichols, Jack Rennie, Curtis Sullivan and Magda Vasko; Photographed at St. Lawrence Hall