Spotlight on Opera
Spotlight on Opera
Starting May 6 at the Ethical Society of St. Louis (9001 Clayton Road, 63117)
There’s more to each opera in the 2013 Festival Season than meets the ear. By joining Opera Theatre’s Spotlight on Opera series, you gain access to unexpected perspectives on the story behind each production. Special guest speakers frame key themes in each opera; directors and designers discuss the creative process for our production; and Gerdine Young Artists perform musical excerpts. Opera Theatre General Director Timothy O’Leary moderates.
A subscription to all four Spotlight on Opera sessions is only $30!
Thanks to media sponsor KWMU St. Louis Public Radio.
MONDAY, MAY 6, 7:30 P.M.
THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE
The Gilbert & Sullivan You Ought to Know
Over a twenty-five year partnership, the unlikely pairing of W. S. Gilbert and Arthur S. Sullivan wrote a series of pieces that define light opera to this day. But who were these two men? And how did they create masterpiece after masterpiece despite their extraordinary differences?
Avis Blewett Professor Emeritus of Music, Washington University
MONDAY, MAY 13, 7:30 P.M.
IL TABARRO & PAGLIACCI
What’s So Real About Verismo?
Puccini and Leoncavallo were among the foremost composers in the verismo (or “realism”) movement in opera. But how can stories of such extreme passion and music of such soaring vocal heights be considered “real”? Or is there something “realer” to verismo than meets the eye?
Nedda in Pagliacci
MONDAY, MAY 20, 7:30 P.M.
Down for the Count
The musical languages of jazz and contemporary opera fuse in the world premiere of Champion – but what do these two styles (one traditionally European and formal, the other quintessentially American and lose) have to say to each other? And on what shoulders is a new opera like Champion created?
Merle Kling Professor of Modern Letters, Washington University
Five-time Grammy Award-winning composer
Emelda in Champion
MONDAY, JUNE 3, 7:30 P.M.
Setting the Stage for Feminism
Smetana’s The Kiss was written at a time of great change, at the dawn of the suffrage movement. While many operas of this era (Carmen, La traviata, Tosca) feature a strong female lead, challenging the pre-conceived notions of womanhood, The Kiss was unique, in that its libretto was written by a female playwright. How did opera change the way in which we saw women at the turn of the 20th century?
Sarah Bryan Miller
Classical Music Critic, St. Louis Post-Dispatch