Opera Modesto celebrates 35 years of locally produced opera with a Gala Concert featuring regional & international stars and local favorites.
The 35th Anniversary Gala Concert (October 28, 2:00 PM, Foster Theater of the Gallo Center for the Arts) features stars Nikola Printz, Christopher Bengochea, Liisa Davila and Donn Bradley from the upcoming production of Bizet’s Carmen, as well as Modesto-based international opera singers Annalisa Winberg & Roy Stevens, and CSUS Professor of Voice, Dr. Joseph Wiggett.
Supporting the soloists will be the Opera Modesto Orchestra, under the baton of Opera Modesto Music Director, Ryan Murray, and the largest chorus in more than 3 decades, led by Chorus Master Liisa Davila. Rounding out the program are twenty-one of the amazing teen participants from Opera Modesto’s First Annual Summer Opera Institute and a Pas de Deux dance by Brian Harris & Morgan Turner of The Dance Factory, with choreography by Debbie Holtzclaw.
The concert features many of the most famous and beloved tunes from all of opera (“Nessun dorma” from Turandot, “La donna e’ mobile” from Rigoletto, The Barcarolle from The Tales of Hoffman and the Intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana, among many others) by popular composers such as Puccini, Verdi, Bizet, Johann Strauss, Offenbach, Mascagni and Leoncavallo. Erika Townsend, widow of the opera company’s founder, Erik Buck Townsend, whose memory and accomplishments will be honored with a special video tribute, will formally introduce Opera Modesto’s new name.
San Francisco mezzo-soprano Nikola Printz to perform
Roy Stevens, Opera Modesto’s new General & Artistic Director is particularly pleased about the featured participation of fast-rising San Francisco based mezzo-soprano Nikola Printz, who will lead the company’s May 2019 production of the most popular opera in the world, Bizet’s Carmen, as the sensuous, mysterious title role. Stevens says, “Nikola is a remarkable and fearless performer. We planned to bring a performer for the title role of Carmen from New York, but when we experienced Nikola’s exciting voice and performing skills, we changed our minds on the spot. Not only is she a fantastic actress, cabaret singer and opera singer, but she is also an aerial trapeze artist!”
Never before has Modesto or the Central Valley experienced a performance of the kind that Nikola will provide in our 35th Anniversary Gala Concert, suspended from the ceiling of the Foster Theater on the aerial trapeze, singing a famous Viennese Operetta aria with the Opera Modesto Orchestra and Music Director, Ryan Murray! In the concert, Nikola will also join the Gala Chorus for a preview of the famous “Habanera” scene from Carmen, as well as performing the famous Flower Duet from Lakme with soprano Liisa Davila.
Gala Celebration Party after the Performance
After the performance audience members and performers are invited to join the entire company in the Gallo Center for the Arts Lobby for a complimentary reception. For Tickets visit Gallo Center for the Arts at: https://galloarts.org/Tickets/
Nikola Printz – Mezzo Soprano
Christopher Bengochea – Tenor
Annalisa Winberg – Soprano
Roy Stevens – Baritone & Opera Modesto General & Artistic Director
Liisa Davila – Soprano & Opera Modesto Chorus Master
Dr. Joseph Wiggett – Baritone
Donn Bradley – Tenor
Brian Harris & Morgan Turner – Dancers from The Dance Factory (choreography by Debbie Holtzclaw)
Opera Modesto Chorus
Opera Modesto Summer Opera Institute Teen Artists (13-18 years old)
Music Director Ryan Murray
Opera Modesto Orchestra
Tickets at https://galloarts.org/Tickets/