Florentine Opera Concludes 2010-2011 Season With Baroque Double-Bill
John Blow’s Venus & Adonis and Henry Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas both produced for the first time in Florentine Opera history
MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin—April 19, 2011—The Florentine Opera Company presents a double-bill of John Blow’s Venus & Adonis and Henry Purcell’s Dido & Aeneas on May 13, 14, 15, 18, 19, 21 & 22 in Vogel Hall at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. This Baroque double-bill presents the earliest surviving British opera (Venus & Adonis) alongside what is largely considered the first English operatic masterpiece (Dido & Aeneas). Both works are being produced for the first time in the Florentine Opera’s 77-year history, after the recent success of the organization’s first foray into Baroque repertoire with a highly lauded 2009 production of Handel’s Semele.
While Florentine Opera performances usually take place in the Marcus Center’s Uihlein Hall, this production will be presented in Vogel Hall to offer an artistic atmosphere more authentic to the viewing experiences of Baroque audiences. “The intimacy of Vogel Hall's jewel-box theater is the perfect setting to experience the lush Baroque melodies and breathtaking scenes of these two operas, and pairing them together offers and interesting and inventive look at early British opera. Hundreds of years later, they still have all the elements that make great entertainment and I believe our audiences will find them very relevant and engaging,” noted Florentine Opera General Director William Florescu.
As stage director, Florescu will lead a cast of acclaimed artists returning to the Florentine stage, including soprano Patricia Risley portraying the doomed Queen Dido, who was last seen as Sharon Falconer in the Midwest premiere of Elmer Gantry, and reuniting soprano Greer Davis and baritone Craig Verm as Venus and Adonis, after their recent successful pairing as Papageno and Papagena in The Magic Flute (2009). Ms. Davis is a 2008-2009 Studio Artist and this production marks her first performance back at the Florentine since that season.
Debut performances will be made by countertenor Ian Howell and mezzo soprano Jean Broekhuizen, who is a Milwaukee native that frequently performs around the region. The Florentine Opera Studio Artists (soprano Erica Schuller, mezzo soprano Julia Elise Hardin, tenor Matthew Richardson and baritone Scott Johnson) will also perform featured roles.
Tickets to mainstage operas start at $30. New this season, enhanced seating and pricing options including 15% discounts for students and seniors at any ticket level, and both student/teacher rush tickets are available beginning one hour before the performance begins with valid school ID.
To learn more about the Florentine Opera, visit www.florentineopera.org.
Venus & Adonis by John Blow
Dido & Aeneas by Henry Purcell
(Sung in English. Each performance includes
both operas, separated by an
Friday, May 13, 2011@ 7:30 PM
Saturday, May 14, 2011 @ 7:30 PM
Sunday, May 15, 2011 @ 2:30 PM
Wednesday, May 18, 2011 @ 7:30 PM
Thursday, May 19, 2011 @ 7:30 PM
Saturday, May 21, 2011 @ 7:30 PM
Sunday, May 22, 2011 @ 2:30 PM
Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, Vogel Hall
123 E. State Street, Milwaukee, WI 53202
Stage Director : William Florescu
Conductor : Christopher Larkin
Choreographer : Dani Kuepper
: Patricia Risley
Venus / Belinda : Greer Davis
Adonis / Aeneas : Craig Verm
Huntsman / Sorceress : Jean Broekhuizen
Cupid / Spirit : Ian Howell
Shepherdess / Second Lady : Erica Schuller (Florentine Opera Studio Artist)
Shepherd / First Witch : Julia Elise Hardin (Florentine Opera Studio Artist)
Shepherd / Sailor : Matthew Richardson (Florentine Opera Studio Artist)
Shepherd : Scott Johnson (Florentine Opera Studio Artist)
ARTIST INFORMATION / INTERVIEWS:
For additional artist biography information or to schedule an interview, please contact Kathryn Reinardy, Communications & PR Manager, by telephone at 414-291-5700 ext. 213.
TICKETS AND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:
Single tickets, which start at $30, are now on sale at www.florentineopera.org /