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A Summer Opera Bouquet in Boston


Due to some unknown alignment of the stars and through the lively efforts of some fresh new companies, opera in its broad variety of guises will be in ample supply this summer in Boston. Between June 29th and August 11th the city will be hosting 19 performances of seven shows, ranging from concert versions to fully staged, from polished to scrappy, and from premieres to chestnuts. Readers should take early notice of the fact that two of the productions will be free thanks to generous underwriting.  A summary follows, and readers may find more information from the companies’ websites as well as in BMInt’s “Upcoming Events.”

Boston Metro Opera cancelled a premiere of a concert version of Christopher Cerrone’s Invisible Cities on June 29 and 30 at Hope Central Church in Jamaica Plain. Christopher Cerrone’s Invisible Cities is a one-act (approximately 50-minute) opera based on the novella by Italo Calvino. Cerrone’s music is very accessible and tonal, but still complex. The presentation will be in concert format with piano, without staging or costumes; just the music and talents. Seats will be $10. This run has been cancelled.

Boston Midsummer Opera will mount Susan Davenny Wyner’s production of Donizetti’s Don Pasquale on July 25, 27, and 29 at BU’s Tsai Center. Donizetti’s comedy Don Pasquale is bursting with life and lyricism. Sparkling coloratura, lyrical arias and moments of dramatic insight come together in one of the world’s greatest operatic comedies. Cast and Direction: David Angus, conductor; Michelle Trainor, soprano; Caroline Worra, soprano, Heather Johnson, mezzo-soprano; Neal Ferreira, tenor; Dinyar Vania, tenor; David Kravitz, baritone. Ticket prices will range from $10 to $50

OperaHub presents a “new take” on Midsummer Night’s Dream on July 28, 29 and 30. The production will be staged by Giselle Ty and conducted  by Nathan Lofton, both making directorial debuts with the company. Baritone Jared Levin (Theseus/Oberon) and soprano Tamara Ryan (Hippolyta/Titania) lead a talented cast of over twenty-five young local artists in bringing the story to life on stage. There will be no charge for admission.

Boston Opera Collaborative will offer a fully staged version with orchestra of Jacques Offenbach’s Orpheus In the Underworld on July 26 through 29 at the Strand Theater in Dorchester. Offenbach’s operetta takes the tragic tale and spins it into an uproarious farce. In his version, Orpheus and Eurydice grow tired of marriage and Eurydice welcomes her visit to Hell. Admission will be free, but reservations will be required.

The North End Music & Performing Arts Center will be offering Bizet’s Carmen on July 29 and August 1, at two locations. The North End Music and Performance Arts Center’s fully staged production by a mix of graduate students and emerging professionals includes a 40-piece orchestra. Directed by Giselle Ty, and conducted by Tiffany Chang, the setting is Spain, mid 1930’s- pre WW2. Tickets will range from $15 to $20 with children free.

Boston Landmarks Orchestra will be collaborating with Boston Lyric Opera in a free extravaganza entitled “Around the World in 80 Minutes” on August 8th at the Hatch Shell on the Boston Esplanade. Making musical stops in France, Italy, Japan, the US, and even Sri Lanka, the program features excerpts from popular works by Puccini, Wagner, Mozart, and Bernstein, several of which are drawn from Boston Lyric Opera’s upcoming 2012/2013 season. Featuring singers from BLO and led by Music Director David Angus. Free

Boston Metro Opera’s second summer presentation will be another world premiere, this time a concert version of Christopher Smith’s new opera, The 99, at Hope Central Church in Jamaica Plain on August 3, 4, 10, and 11. This on-the-money docudrama examines the financial crisis and the devastating effect it has had on average Americans. Watch out Wall Street. The event is priced at $10.

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