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Scandal, Intrigue, and Despair

February 12, 2007

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    February 12, 2007
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    Opera Carolina News

Scandal, Intrigue, and Despair

Charlotte, N.C. – The jester truly is the unfortunate fool in Opera Carolina's production of Giuseppe Verdi's tragic opera Rigoletto. Playing March 1, 3 and 4 in the Belk Theater, Rigoletto transports audiences to the 16th century court of the licentious Duke of Mantua. Known for his frivolity with women, the Duke seduces the young daughters and wives while his hunchbacked jester, Rigoletto, jeers at the unfortunate noblemen for their cuckoldry and powerlessness over the Duke's sensual appetite. Montorone, an elderly nobleman, denounces the Duke for seducing his daughter and pronounces a curse upon the Duke and his jester. As the plot unfolds, Montrone's curse becomes a reality for Rigoletto as his beloved daughter, Gilda, is seduced by the Duke's advances and sacrifices herself in the name of love for the duplicitous Duke. Despite his attempts to save his daughter, Rigoletto the jester is foiled by an awful twist of fate and the tyrannical power of a corrupted ruler.

Opera Carolina's production of Rigoletto will move audiences with the Verdi's notable score and the talented voices of Opera Carolina's featured artists. Gordon Hawkins, a frequent soloist with major opera companies and symphonies throughout the world including performances at the Royal Opera House at Covent Garden, Teatro Massimo in Palermo, Deutsche Opera of Berlin, Dusseldorf Opera, Bregenzer Festspiele, and Teatro Maestranza in Seville, will play the role of the jester, Rigoletto.

First-prize winner of the 2006 George London Foundation Competition and second-prize winner in Operalia, Ailyn Perez, will play Rigoletto's naïve and unlucky daughter Gilda. With past performances at the Los Angeles Opera, Opera Deleware, Palm Beach Opera, and Wolf Trap Opera, the Latina Perez will make Rigoletto her debut performance with Opera Carolina.

Tickets range from $14 - $90 and opera flex subscriptions for any two-show or three-show combination are also available. Call 704-372-1000 for tickets or visit us online at operacarolina.org.

All performances feature the Opera Carolina Chorus and The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra. Full cast listing and bios are available at: operacarolina.org/operas. To download images of this production please go to: http://www.operacarolina.org/about_media_photos.php. Current images available include: production photos, artist headshots, and the Opera Carolina logo.

Founded in 1948 as the Charlotte Opera Association by a small group of volunteers, Opera Carolina today is the largest professional opera company in the Carolinas with an operating budget of over $3.5 million. The mission of Opera Carolina is to inspire and entertain the region's diverse community through the presentation of excellent Opera, Operetta, Music Theater, 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 the Arts & Science Council-Charlotte/Mecklenburg, Inc. and the North Carolina Arts Council, an agency funded by the state of North Carolina and the National Endowment for the Arts. Opera Carolina is a member of OPERA America.
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