Madison Opera's "Cinderella" Theater and Dance Rossini's comic take on the fairy tale, 8 pm on 4/27 and 2:30 pm, 4/29, Overture Center-Overture Hall. $116-$18 (Also: "A Night at the Palace" benefit gala with dinner, cocktails, 5:30 pm, 4/27, $125; and "Out at the Opera" LGBTQ/allies afterparty with 4/27 performance, $85/$45. RSVP: 238-8085). 258-4141
Madison Opera presents Gioachino Rossini’s Cinderella (La Cenerentola) on Friday, April 27 and Sunday, April 29 at the Overture Center for the Arts. Bel canto magic meets a beloved fairy tale as the beautiful maid Angelina quests for true love and the talented film director Ramiro sets out to find his next leading lady. The classic rags-to-riches story is set against the backdrop of Depression-era Hollywood, when vaudeville gave way to the silver screen.
Madison Opera’s exciting production features glittering sets and costumes and a cast of unforgettable characters. Maestro John DeMain conducts the Madison Opera Chorus and Madison Symphony Orchestra. Garnett Bruce returns to direct the lavish production, an original interpretation that incorporates showgirls, soundstages, and Busby Berkeley production numbers.
“It’s an American approach to the Cinderella story. In the 1930s, movie studios seemed to go from fantasy spectacle to human drama,” says Bruce about the unusual choice of setting for Cinderella. “Rossini’s take on the legend is not about magic, but people looking after one another. The fun and outlandish Hollywood production numbers provide contrast to the heartfelt vocal solos and ensembles and emotions.”
Mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack, who gave audiences a tantalizing preview at Opera in the Park 2011, sings Angelina, the ill-treated Cinderella who dreams of happiness. Tenor Gregory Schmidt, last on the Madison Opera stage as the ghostly Peter Quint in The Turn of the Screw, sings Don Ramiro, the weary film director at Palace Pictures Studios whose hunt for a starlet awakens his heart. Baritone Steven Condy sings Don Magnifico, the washed-up vaudevillian searching for a ticket back to stardom with his two scheming daughters.
Daniel Belcher makes his Madison Opera debut as Dandini, Ramiro’s driver, who changes places with him to great comic effect. Alan Dunbar also makes his Madison Opera debut in the role of Alidoro, the clever studio head at Palace Pictures. They are joined by Jamie Van Eyck and Amy Mahoney as the two amusingly wicked stepsisters, Tisbe and Clorinda.
“Cinderella is one of Rossini’s most delightful operas,” says General Director Kathryn Smith. “It’s both very funny and very genuine— we laugh at the comedy, while strongly rooting for everyone to live happily-ever-after. The music is full of vocal fireworks that are thrilling to hear and we have a stunning cast that makes it all sound easy.”
Madison Opera is hosting a children’s book drive during the run of Cinderella. The book drive, aimed at promoting children’s language skills and reinforcing the importance of literacy, will benefit the University of Wisconsin Pediatric Early Literacy Projects, encompassing the American Family Children’s Hospital Inpatient Reading Library and UW Health’s Reach Out and Read programs. As a thank you for helping provide literacy-rich waiting rooms and libraries for young patients, patrons will be entered into a drawing to win one of three prizes, including subscriptions to Madison Opera’s 2012/13 season.
A variety of events surround this final mainstage production of Madison Opera’s “Season of Dreamers.” Opera Up Close provides an exciting preview of Cinderella on April 15 at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, including an artist roundtable. Pre-Opera talks will be offered one hour prior to each performance in the Wisconsin Studio. In the Overture Hall lobby, audiences will be treated to “Visiting the Canteen,” a poster exhibit focused on 1930s film stars who also appear as characters in Cinderella. As part of the exhibit, Edgewood High School will present a tableau vivant of an iconic scene from the Golden Age of Hollywood. Opening night of Cinderella marks Madison Opera’s second annual OUT @ the Opera, our affinity group for the LGBTQ and Allied community. The event begins with the spectacular opening night performance of Cinderella, followed by an exclusive after-party at Fresco Rooftop Restaurant & Lounge. Patrons who want to make the night even more special can purchase tickets to A Night at the Palace, an evening of fun and fine dining on opening night. This gala event to benefit Madison Opera features hors d'oeuvres and wine during a silent auction, an elegant dinner in Promenade Hall before the performance, and champagne and dessert following the show, as well as a chance to meet the artists. The silent auction is open to all Cinderella ticket holders, and patrons may bid until the end of intermission.
For production photos, to schedule artist interviews, or for more information, please contact Manager of Marketing and Community Engagement Ronia Holmes at firstname.lastname@example.org or 608.238.8085.
PRODUCTION TEAM AND CAST
Stage Director......................Garnett Bruce
Set Designer……………..R. Keith Brumley
Costume Designer……......Mary Traylor
Lighting Designer...........James Sale
Don Ramiro………...Gregory Schmidt
Don Magnifico…......Steven Condy
Tisbe………………………..……Jamie Van Eyck
Opera Up Close: The Cinderella Preview Sunday, April 15, 2012, 1pm-3pm Madison Museum of Contemporary Art Lecture Hall, $20 general admission Join Madison Opera for a behind-the-scenes exploration of Cinderella, including a multimedia look at the works of Rossini and the history of Cinderella (La Cenerentola), complete with a journey through classic 1930s Hollywood, hosted by General Director (and movie musical buff) Kathryn Smith. You'll also hear commentary from Maestro John DeMain, stage director Garnett Bruce, and members of the cast.
Pre-Opera Talks Friday, April 27, 2012, 7pm and Sunday, April 29, 2012, 1:30pm Wisconsin Studio at Overture Center, Free to ticket holders Attend an introduction to Cinderella one hour prior to curtain to learn more about the production.
A Night at the Palace Friday, April 27, 2012, 5:30pm
Overture Center for the Arts, $125 An evening of fun and fine dining in classic Hollywood style precedes curtain-up of Cinderella. This gala event to benefit Madison Opera features hors d'oeuvres and wine during a silent auction, a dinner before the performance, and champagne and dessert following the show. Enjoy an elegant evening, a rousing performance, a chance to meet the artists, and more.
Second Annual OUT @ the Opera Friday, April 27, 2012, 8pm, Overture Center for the Arts
After-party at Fresco Rooftop Restaurant & Lounge
Advance purchase and RSVP necessary. For information, visit www.madisonopera.org or call 608.238.8085
Join our affinity group for the LGBTQ and Allied community for a spectacular opening night performance of Rossini’s Cinderella. After the opera, continue the evening with a sensational and exclusive after-party at Fresco Rooftop Restaurant & Lounge. Meet up with old friends, make new ones, and party the night away with Madison Opera’s artists while partaking of a delightful selection of complimentary finger-foods, beer, and wine.
Once Upon a Time: The Cinderella Book Drive Friday, April 27, 2012 (6:30pm-11pm) and Sunday, April 29, 2012 (1:30pm-6pm) Overture Hall Lobby, Overture Center for the Arts Most of us grew up on fairy tales like Cinderella, and Madison Opera wants to ensure that even in this digital era, the magic of the written word is not lost. In that spirit, Madison Opera is partnering with the University of Wisconsin Pediatric Early Literacy Projects to conduct a book drive. The book drive will benefit the American Family Children’s Hospital Inpatient Reading Library and UW Health’s Reach Out and Read programs. In appreciation to our patrons for supporting the Cinderella book drive, Madison Opera is offering a special drawing to win one of three prizes.
Visiting the Canteen: The Hollywood Stars of Cinderella Friday, April 27, 2012 (7:00-7:45pm) and Sunday, April 29, 2012 (2:00-2:45pm), Overture Center for the Arts Take a walk down the Hollywood Walk of Fame! This lobby poster exhibit includes a look at the 1930s film stars who appear in the Canteen scene of Cinderella, as well as a tableau vivant (“living picture”) installation created by Edgewood High School.
Cast, Director, and Conductor Bios
Mezzo-soprano Daniela Mack (Angelina) makes her mainstage debut with Madison Opera in this role, after having sung at Opera in the Park 2011. This season she debuted as Nancy in Albert Herring at Los Angeles Opera; she will sing Cherubino in Le Nozze di Figaro at the Verbier Festival this summer. The operas of Rossini figured prominently in her 2010–11 season, including Rosina in The Barber of Seville at Pittsburgh Opera, Isabella in L’Italiana in Algeri at Opéra National de Bordeaux and Florentine Opera, and La Cenerentola at Opera Colorado. Future seasons will see Ms. Mack at the San Francisco Opera, Washington National Opera, Théàtre du Capitole in Toulouse, Teatro Municipal de Santiago in Chile, and English National Opera.
Tenor Gregory Schmidt (Don Ramiro) has sung a number of roles for Madison Opera, including Peter Quint in The Turn of the Screw and the Steersman in The Flying Dutchman. Upcoming engagements include Tonio in La Fille du Régiment with Tulsa Opera and the tenor soloist in Philip Glass’ Kepler with Spoleto Festival USA. He is on the roster of the Metropolitan Opera, where he has covered several leading roles. Recent engagements include Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor and Almaviva in The Barber of Seville with Opera Tampa; Nemorino in L’Elisir d’Amore and Tebaldo in I Capuleti e i Montecchi with Tulsa Opera; and Camille in The Merry Widow and Alfredo in La Traviata with St. Petersburg Opera.
Baritone Steven Condy (Don Magnifico) has sung the title role in Falstaff and Dr. Bartolo in The Barber of Seville for Madison Opera. This season he sings Dr. Bartolo with Boston Lyric Opera and Houston Grand Opera, a role he has also sung for Portland Opera and Virginia Opera. Other recent engagements include Falstaff at Utah Opera, Major General Stanley in The Pirates of Penzance with Arizona Opera, and the title role in Don Pasquale with Opera New Jersey and Utah Opera. He has been heard in leading roles with Memphis Opera, Chautauqua Opera, Opera Pacific, Washington National Opera, and Lyric Opera of Kansas City.
Mezzo-soprano Jamie Van Eyck (Tisbe) appeals to audiences and critics alike as a compelling young artist in opera and concert. Her recent appearances include The Drummer in The Emperor of Atlantis at Boston Lyric Opera, Meg in Little Women at Utah Opera, and Cherubino in The Marriage of Figaro at Opera Theater of St. Louis. Ms. Van Eyck has previously performed with Madison Opera as Flora in La Traviata, Miss Jessel in The Turn of the Screw, Mercedes in Carmen, Kate Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, and Olga in Eugene Onegin.
Soprano Amy Mahoney (Clorinda) made her Madison Opera debut as Frasquita in Carmen. She was featured in worldwide television broadcasts as the soprano soloist in The Birth of Christ, an oratorio filmed at Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin, Ireland, narrated by Liam Neeson. Other roles include The Prima Donna in Viva La Mamma at Tacoma Opera, Cunegonde in Candide at Eastside Musical Theater, and Micaela in Carmen at Washington East Opera. Recent engagements include Lauretta in Gianni Schicchi with Opera Southwest.
Madison Opera’s Cinderella 5 of 6
Baritone Daniel Belcher (Dandini) won a Grammy Award in 2011 for his recording of the leading role of Jaufré Rudel in Kaija Saariaho's L'Amour de Loin. Recent highlights include Marcello in La Bohème with Lyric Opera of Kansas City; Taddeo in L’Italiana in Algeri with Opera Company of Philadelphia; Ned Keene in Peter Grimes with the Grand Théâtre de Genève; Papageno in Die Zauberflöte with San Francisco Opera; Dandini with San Francisco Opera, Utah Opera, and Opera Company of Philadelphia; and the title role of Billy Budd with Houston Grand Opera. This is his Madison Opera debut.
Baritone Alan Dunbar (Alidoro) makes his Madison Opera debut in this production. Upcoming engagements include the world premiere of Rikki-Tikki-Tavi with the Pacifica Quartet and Anubis Quartet and covering the Prophet / King in Nico Muhly’s Dark Sisters at Opera Company of Philadelphia. Recent performances include the Composer in Menotti's The Last Savage at Santa Fe Opera, the title role in Sweeney Todd in the Santa Fe Opera Apprentice Scenes, and the title role in Webster Wordsworth for the Santa Fe Opera's 2011 spring tour. He made his European solo recital debut at the Oslo Grieg Festival and performed as bass soloist in Stravinsky's Pulcinella at the Tanglewood Music Festival.
Garnett Bruce (Stage Director) returns to Madison Opera for Cinderella, following his 2011 production of La Traviata. He staged Turandot for the opening of San Francisco Opera's 2011/12 season, as well as for the inaugural production for Lyric Opera of Kansas City's Kaufmann Performing Arts Center. Also this season he directed Lucia di Lammermoor for Dallas Opera, The Rake's Progress for Peabody Opera Theater, and Don Pasquale for Opera Memphis. Last season he directed La Traviata for Austin Lyric Opera, continued his Da Ponte Cycle with Don Giovanni for Opera Omaha, and continued his work as teacher and director at the Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University with a double bill of Poulenc's Les Mamelles de Tiresias and Ravel’s L'Enfant et les Sortilèges. Mr. Bruce’s rich body of work includes companies across the country such as Lyric Opera of Chicago, Houston Grand Opera, San Diego Opera, Washington National Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Pittsburgh Opera, Cincinnati Opera and Utah Opera, as well as his European opera debut staging Turandot for the Teatro di San Carlo in Naples. He was the Artistic Adviser and Principal Stage Director for Opera Omaha from 2008 to 2011.
John DeMain (Conductor) is the Artistic Director of Madison Opera, the Music Director of the Madison Symphony Orchestra, and a sought-after guest conductor of orchestras and opera companies around the world. In recent seasons, he has led productions at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Washington National Opera, and Los Angeles Opera. This season Maestro DeMain conducted Porgy and Bess at Seattle Opera, Aida at Virginia Opera. and Show Boat for Lyric Opera of Chicago. Other recent engagements include the Canadian premiere of Nixon in China at Vancouver Opera and a double bill of Carmina Burana and Pagliacci at Portland Opera. During his distinguished tenure as Music Director of Houston Grand Opera, Maestro DeMain conducted numerous world premieres, including Bernstein’s A Quiet Place and Adams’ Nixon in China, as well as the American premiere of Glass’ Akhnaten. In addition, he led a history-making production of Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess, which he subsequently recorded for RCA and which won the Grammy Award, Tony Award, and France’s Grand Prix du Disque.
Madison Opera is a non-profit professional opera company based in Madison, Wisconsin. Founded in 1961, the company grew from a local workshop presenting community singers in English-language productions to a nationally recognized organization producing diverse repertoire and presenting leading American opera singers alongside emerging talent. A resident organization of the Overture Center for the Arts, Madison Opera presents three productions annually in addition to the free summer concert Opera in the Park and a host of educational programming.