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Opera Carolina Announces 2013-2014 Season, Sponsored by Wells Fargo Private Bank

March 21, 2013

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    March 21, 2013
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    Opera Carolina News

Opera Carolina Announces 2013-2014 Season, Sponsored by Wells Fargo Private Bank

Charlotte, N.C., (March 21, 2013) - Opera Carolina announces its 2013-2014 season, underwritten for a third consecutive year by a significant grant from Wells Fargo Private Bank. "We are profoundly grateful for the enduring generosity of Wells Fargo. Time after time, they step forward with support that reinforces our mission and boosts our ability to deliver a season of spectacular productions in a way that is fiscally sustainable," said James Meena, general director & principal conductor of Opera Carolina.

The company previews its 65th season with a Gala Benefit Concert entitled, Art to Poetry to Music, on Sept. 12 at the Knight Theater. The evening features some of Opera Carolina's most stunning stars performing under the baton of Maestro James Meena and accompanied by the Charlotte Symphony. Art to Poetry to Music, a multi-media event presented in collaboration with The Confucius Institute at Pfeiffer University, will fuse together opera, spoken word, and the power of the visual. Single tickets, available on August 1 by calling 704.372.1000, are $40 and include a pre-concert reception. Season subscribers receive a 50 percent discount.

The mainstage season opens with a new production of Verdi's grand tale of love and war, Aida, on October 19, 22, 24 and 27, featuring Canadian-American Opéra de Montréal soprano Othalie Graham; Russian born Metropolitan Opera mezzo-soprano Irina Mishura; and internationally acclaimed Italian tenor Antonello Palombi in leading roles. Puccini's Il Trittico, three one-act operas created for the Metropolitan Opera, follows on January 18, 23 and 26. Passion and intrigue swirl as a seamless evening unfolds with Il Tabarro, Suor Angelica and Gianni Schicchi starring Washington Opera soprano Jill Gardner; Chinese born Welsh National Opera baritone Chen-Ye Yuan and Korean born Royal Opera Covent Garden tenor Dongwon Shin. The season concludes with Wagner's haunting tale of love on the high seas, The Flying Dutchman, on March 22, 27 and 30. Metropolitan Opera bass-baritone Greer Grimsley and Seattle Opera soprano Elizabeth Kataria lead the cast.

"Wells Fargo takes pride in supporting Charlotte's diverse cultural community. Our support for Opera Carolina reflects Wells Fargo's commitment to making sure that compelling arts programming and experiences are available to our clients and community," said Madelyn Caple, regional managing director for Wells Fargo Private Bank in the Greater Charlotte area.

All mainstage performances are at the Belk Theater, North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center. Season subscriptions are now on sale at 704.332.7177, ext. 1. Single tickets go on sale August 1, 2013 through the Performing Arts Center Box Office at 704.372.1000, or visit www.operacarolina.org. Season tickets begin at $33 and single tickets start as low as $15. Opera Carolina provides significant discounts for subscribers, as well as the new Youth Discount to encourage adults to bring young people to the Opera, plus Student Rush tickets, and Group Discounts.

The season celebrates love as depicted by three of the greatest opera composers, as it also commemorates the 200th anniversary of both Verdi's and Wagner's births. The Il Trittico production marks the continuation of a five-year Puccini cycle, in which Opera Carolina intends to perform all of Puccini's operas through the spring of 2017.

About the Operas
Note to editors: For photography and complete cast biographies, please visit operacarolina.org/press.
Aida by Giuseppe Verdi
October 19, 22, 24, 27, 2013

The sands of ancient Egypt run hot with the horrors and heartbreak of love and war. Ensnared in the tumult of choosing between her homeland and the enemy soldier who loves her, princess and slave Aida eventually finds herself in the cold embrace of a fate no one would wish upon their daughter.

The performance presenting sponsors are the Levine Cancer Institute and The Hearst Corporation, with additional support from Shumaker Loop & Kendrick. Aida is performed in Italian with English titles.

Cast and Artistic Team
Othalie Graham - Aida- (top credit, Opéra de Montréal)
Irina Mishura - Amneris - (top credit, Metropolitan Opera)
Antonello Palombia - Radames - (top credit, Teatro alla Scala)

Conductor: James Meena
Director: Brian Deedrick

Il Trittico by Giacomo Puccini
January 18, 23, 26, 2014

Presented as the seamless evening of relentless beauty it was originally intended to be, these three one-act operas are from the pen that brought us Madama Butterfly.

Il Tabarro
Restless and disaffected, Georgette runs cold to the kisses of her husband Michele while her passions are ignited in the presence of Luigi. A misplaced spark proves to be no mere trifle when infidelity leads to death on this barge on the Seine.

Suor Angelica
Seven years after taking her vows, Sister Angelica's quiet life is revealed as one marked by cruelty, illegitimacy, disinheritance, and suicide. However not even death can keep the tortured Angelica from the redemption she so richly deserves.

Gianni Schicchi
Taking a charred page from Dante's Inferno, Hell eagerly awaits Gianni Schicchi. Brilliantly dishonest, the loveable scoundrel does a little dirty work for the disinherited relatives of the richest man in Florence and deceives his darling daughter in the process. With a wink, he asks the ultimate question: Is it so bad to impersonate a dead man and cheat the cheaters for the happiness and security of your pride and joy?

The performance presenting sponsor is Time Warner Cable. Il Trittico is performed in Italian with English titles.
Cast and Artistic Team
Jill Gardner - Georgetta and Sister Angelica - (top credit, Washington National Opera)
Chen-Ye Yuan - Gianni Schicchi - (top credit, Welsh National Opera)
Dongwon Shin - Luigi - (top credit, Royal Opera Covent Garden)

Conductor: James Meena
Director: Jay Lesenger

The Flying Dutchman by Richard Wagner
March 22, 27, 30 2014

Mesmerized by the legendary Flying Dutchman, the young dreamer Senta flies from the affections of the handsome Erik and flings herself into the dark waters lying in wait when she chooses to love and save the phantom of the seven seas. The Flying Dutchman is performed in German with English titles.

Cast and Artistic Team
Greer Grimsley - Dutchman - (top credit, Metropolitan Opera)
Elizabeth Kataria - Senta - (top credit, Seattle Opera)
Kristopher Irmiter - Daland - (top credit, San Francisco Opera)

Conductor: James Meena
Director: Bernard Uzan

About Opera Carolina

Founded in 1948 as the Charlotte Opera Association by a small group of volunteers, today Opera Carolina is the largest professional opera company in the Carolinas with an operating budget of over $2.6 million for the fiscal year 2013. The mission of Opera Carolina is to inspire the region's diverse community through the presentation of Opera, Operetta, and Education & Outreach programs that elevate the quality of life in the Carolinas. Opera Carolina is a community resource with a commitment to artistic excellence and community service.

Opera Carolina is supported by individuals and corporations throughout the region. Opera Carolina is also supported, in part, with operating support from the Arts & Science Council. Additional support is provided by the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources. Opera Carolina is a member of OPERA America.