Friday, June 17, 2011

Stars to Come Out for Astoria Music Festival in Oregon

Swenson to sing Mozart's "Exsultate
Jubilate" and Mahler Symphony #4
"This year, in what may be the greatest musical event ever presented in Astoria, the festival brings to the stage one of the finest sopranos in American operatic history, Ruth Ann Swenson, in a concert of Mozart and Mahler. Opportunities like this are rare indeed, and there is no need to say more, other than this: Don't miss it. The 2011 festival's major opera production is Verdi's Il Trovatore. One of the most popular operas ever written, it has an evil count, a vengeful gypsy woman, a passionate troubadour, love, death and a mysterious power. The only thing missing is coffee. Enrico Caruso once said of Il Trovatore that a successful performance only required the four greatest singers in the world. The Astoria Music Festival has come close to Caruso's ideal, with a cast that stars the latest sensational Metropolitan
Meade stars as Verdi's Leonora
Opera diva, Angela Meade, who happens to almost be a local girl (she comes from Washington). Richard Zeller, he of the magnificent baritone and a perennial festival favorite, plays the evil Count Luna. Tenor Daniel Snyder, Canadian mezzo-soprano Rebecca Hass and local favorite Deac Guidi round out the cast. The 'mini opera' is Maxwell Davies' Eight Songs for a Mad King, starring John Duykers...as King George III. The North Coast Chorale and the Baroque Band will join soprano Amy Hansen and organist Julia Brown in a presentation of music by Handel, the mad king's favorite composer. The final opera is Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro. A comic opera that is one of the world's favorites, the festival has managed to make it a unique event – or two events. The first is a Master Class with Swenson and singers from the Vocal Artist Apprentice Program, who will perform the opera. This is a unique chance to see the making of singers and of a performance. The other reason this Figaro is unique is the ticket price: $5." [Source]

Learn more about the festival by going to their website.

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