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the little OPERA theatre of ny: Liberte, Egalite, et Fraternite

Sunday, July 14, 2013

3:00 p.m.4:00 p.m.

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This Bastille Day, the little OPERA theatre of ny, in partnership with Socrates Sculpture Park, will present an afternoon of free French opera with Liberte, Egalite, et Fraternite. Composers will include Chevalier de Saint-Georges, Francis Poulenc, Umberto Giordano, and Georges Bizet.

Chevalier de Saint-Georges, often called “The Black Mozart,” lived and fought during the revolution. Born in Guadeloupe, he was the son of a French Plantation owner and a slave who moved to Paris to live in Marie Antoinette’s court. The concert at Socrates Sculpture Park features music from his opera L’Amant anonyme, [1780], which tells the story of a lover who is afraid to reveal his true identity to the object of his affections.

Dialogues des Carmélites by Francis Poulenc was written during the twentieth century, but is set during the period of the French revolution. It looks at the events of the revolution and terror from the perspective of the nuns and clergy who maintained their ideals throughout the time of upheaval.

In Andrea Chénier, Italian verismo composer Umberto Giordano was inspired by events of the revolution, and the historical French poet André Chénier, who was executed during the final days of the “Reign of Terror.”

The spirit of the independence is embodied in what is perhaps the most iconic and popular of French operas, Carmen, by Georges Bizet. An operatic tribute to French culture would not be complete without it.

Featured in the concert are Emmy winning soprano Adrienne Danrich (Aida/Annapolis Opera, Tulsa Opera; This Little Light of Mine/Milwaukee Public Television; Serena, Porgy and Bess/Cincinnati Opera, Skylight Music Theater); mezzo soprano MaryAnn McCormick (Soeur Mathilde, Dialogues des Carmélites, Die Walküre/MET upcoming Suzuki, Madame Butterfly/Lyric Opera of Chicago; Dr. Sun Yat Sen/Santa Fe Opera); soprano Jennifer Moore (Mimì, La bohème; Ninetta, La gazza ladra (Bronx Opera); Dialogues des Carmélites, dell’Arte Opera Ensemble); baritone Robert Balonek (¡Figaro90210/Morningside Opera; upcoming: Handel’s Alceste/the American Classical Orchestra; Escamillo, Carmen/ Opera Hamilton); tenor Aubry Bryan (Mon Pauvre Coeur, Les Musique des Créoles Noirs, An Evening with Chevalier de Saint-Georges); and tenor Nicholas Simpson (Beethoven's Missa solemnis/Brooklyn Symphony; l sogno di Scipione/Gotham Opera, upcoming Silent Night/Fort Worth Opera).

The concert will be led by from the piano by music director Catherine Miller (Opera: The Reformed Drunkard, Travelers, The Mother of Us All, Two Little Tragedies of Pushkin, The Bohemians, Man in a Black Coat/ the little OPERA theatre of ny), and directed by Philip Shneidman (Founder of the little opera theatre of NY). Shneidman’s most recent work was Gluck’s The Reformed Drunkard in a new adaptation and translation, and Travelers, an original double bill of two one act operas by Gustav Holst. For little OPERA he has also directed Mitridate, re di Ponto - the NYC stage premiere; La finta giardiniera, The Mother of Us All with the artist Sherrie Levine; and 2 Little Tragedies of Pushkin with Mungo Thomson.

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