Edmonton Opera announces 2014-15 season

Feb. 11, 2014
Media contact: Jelena Bojic
Assistant general manager & director of community relations
jelena.bojic@edmontonopera.com; 780-392-7837

The Edmonton Opera’s 2014/15 season is one of Great Escapes, as each opera demands its principal characters perform a variety of clever and cunning exits — from a lecherous old man in The Barber of Seville, from magical beings in The Magic Flute, and from a constrained, loveless marriage in Lucia di Lammermoor.

The Barber of Seville (Oct. 25, 28 and 30, 2014) received great reviews at Vancouver Opera, where the story is set on a movie studio backlot, with Rosina as a starlet on the silver screen, Bartolo as the studio owner and Figaro as the meddlesome hairstylist. Designed by Allan Stichbury with costumes by Parvin Mirhady, this comedy classic involves a few close shaves to get the girl, accompanied by catchy melodies.

For a mid-winter respite, the production of The Magic Flute will be built by Edmonton Opera, with sets designed by Bretta Gerecke and costumes by Deanna Finnman. This bird-brained quest for love (Jan. 31, Feb. 1 and 3, 2015) features a cast of young, Canadian artists, many of who have been seen on Edmonton Opera’s stage recently. Jessica Muirhead (Pamina), Phillip Addis (Papageno), Jacqueline Woodley (Papagena), Teiya Kasahara (Queen of the Night), Michael Barrett (Monostatos) and Stephen Hegedus (Sprecher) will be conducted by William Eddins, and under the direction of Rob Herriot.

Drama unfolds to close the season with Lucia di Lammermoor, with one of Canada’s leading sopranos, Simone Osborne, in the title role. In Donizetti’s bel canto masterpiece, madness is used as more than just a plot function; it plays out as a personal tragedy, a political statement and a healing ritual (April 18, 21 and 23, 2015).

As Edmonton Opera moves past its 50th anniversary, the operatic journey continues to be a varied offering — a twist on a classic, well-loved opera, a new, whimsical production of a family-friendly opera with rising Canadian stars, and a treasured work that hasn’t been seen in Edmonton for nearly 20 years.

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Storm the Stage brings arts patrons onto the opera set

Not only is the Edmonton Opera recognizing the 200th anniversary of composer Verdi’s birth with the production of Aida, but we’re also throwing a party.

The fifth annual Storm the Stage — a party on the opera set — will be held on Oct. 20, during a non- performance night of Aida. Edmontonians are invited to experience Egypt on the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium stage during this unique arts event.

Opera 101 provides context, extensive background

Before the curtain rises for Aida this October, the Edmonton Opera presents Opera 101, a panel discussion to break down the intricacies of one of Verdi’s most well-loved and grandest operas.

Five panelists, including Stephan Bonfield, Dr. Julián Castro-Rea, Dr. Magdy El-Shamma, Dr. Benjamin Garstad and Dejan Miladinovic, will discuss Aida on Oct. 10 at 7 p.m., at the Art Gallery of Alberta in the Ledcor Theatre.

Matinée programming adds flexibility to opera schedule

Opera is even more accessible during the 2012/13 season, as the Edmonton Opera has made changes to its production schedule to allow for matinée performances.

In addition to three nighttime performances, there will be a 2 p.m. performance on the Sunday during the production run. This earlier performance allows for out-of-town opera enthusiasts to enjoy the performance without making an overnight trip, or for families to expose their children to the art form and still make it home at a family-friendly hour.

Season starts with grand opera

One of the grand operas, Aida will grace the Edmonton stage for the first time in over a decade when the Edmonton Opera opens its 49th season next month. Celebrating the 200th anniversary of Verdi’s birth, Edmonton Opera joins other opera houses around the world honouring the great composer and his works.

The Verdi masterpiece will be presented in its full splendor, with roughly 100 performers, including principal artists, chorus members, supernumeraries and Brian Webb dancers on stage together at any given time.

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