The two-time Grammy Award winning opera Elmer Gantry returns to the Florentine stage with a new cast, on the heels of critical acclaim and standing ovations at performances across the nation. Based on the popular Sinclair Lewis novel, this captivating tale reflects on the rise and fall of a small town preacher in early 20th century America and his love affair with a devout evangelist.
Robert Aldridge’s Elmer Gantry is framed with an enthralling score influenced by traditional opera, vibrant gospel, and American-folk styles. Craig Verm (Papageno in The Magic Flute, 2009; Adonis in Venus and Adonis, 2011; Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas, 2011; and Count Almaviva in The Marriage of Figaro, 2013) sings the title role of Elmer Gantry, alongside Katherine Pracht (Mrs. McLean in Susannah, 2012) as the evangelist Sharon Falconer. Former 2012-2013 Florentine Studio Artist Alisa Suzanne Jordheim (Frasquita in Carmen, 2012; Miss Wordsworth in Albert Herring, 2013; and Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro, 2013) returns as Lulu Baines, with Jeffrey Beruan making his Florentine debut as her father, Reverend Arthur Baines. Frank Kelly directs this all-star cast with the return of Maestro Christopher Larkin (Albert Herring, 2013) conducting the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra in this poignant and energetic revival.