Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Intimate Opera Of Pasadena Brings "Amahl and the Night Visitors" to Pasadena Playhouse

December 16-19
Evening and Matinee Performances

mezzo-soprano Suzanna Guzmán, tenor Greg Fedderly, baritone Robin Buck
and bass baritone Cedric Berry

Actor Malcolm McDowell will also narrate
"A Child’s Christmas in Wales" by Dylan Thomas

December 16 at 8 p.m. (Gala); December 17 at 8 p.m; December 18 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.; December 19 at 2 p.m.

Intimate Opera of Pasadena brings a Christmas gift to the whole family with its upcoming production of Gian Carlo Menotti's "Amahl and the Night Visitors," December 16-19, at Pasadena's historic Pasadena Playhouse. Mezzo-soprano Suzanna Guzmán, who has performed the one-act opera under the direction of composer Menotti himself, heads the stellar cast, while Artistic Director Stephanie Vlahos is staging the classic holiday treat.

Guzmán received a nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical for her Kennedy Center portrayal of the Mother of Amahl, the crippled shepherd boy who is healed when he unexpectedly accompanies three kings on a visit to a manger in Bethlehem.

In addition to Guzmán, boy sopranos Caleb Glickman and Leighton Sackby will alternate in the role of Amahl, tenor Greg Fedderly plays King Kaspar, baritone Robin Buck appears as King Melchior, bass baritone Cedric Berry as King Balthazar and Benito Galinda as the Page. Members of the Pasadena Master Chorale will appear as the chorus of shepherds and villagers, with PMC Music Director Jeffrey Bernstein conducting.

A second matinee repertory cast will include soprano Alexandra Schenck as the Mother, tenor Robert Norman as Kaspar, baritone Alex Britton as Melchior, bass baritone Nicholas Shelton as Balthazar, and Benito Galinda as the Page. Glickman and Sackby play Amahl for all performances.

“Given our new digs as opera company in residence at the Pasadena Playhouse, our productions will be truly unique,” says Vlahos, who began her career in Los Angeles as a resident artist at Los Angeles Opera and is now a director for Full Circle Opera Company, The Opera Institute at CSULB, and the Domingo-Thornton Young Artists program at LA Opera, as well as other regional opera companies throughout the US. Joining Vlahos on the production team are Jareg Sayeg, lighting designer; Emmy award winning scenic designer John Iacovelli; and Kate Bergh, costume designer.

Collaborating with Intimate Opera of Pasadena for evening performances is actor Malcolm McDowell, who will narrate "A Child’s Christmas in Wales," by Welsh poet Dylan Thomas, following the opera. “Dylan Thomas often gave greatly acclaimed public readings of his works, including 'A Child’s Christmas in Wales,' " says Vlahos. “This poem has resonated with audiences in the same way that more celebrated classics do..."

For more information about Intimate Opera of Pasadena, visit Pasadena Playhouse is located at 39 South El Molino Avenue in Pasadena, California. A gala opening performance will take place Thursday, December 16, at 8 p.m., with tickets ranging from $60 to $100/person. Ticket prices for the remaining matinee and evening performances range from $35 to $75. Patrons interested in attending the gala dinner with the artists and creative team following the opening night performance should call 626.274.7342 or email [email protected] for more information.


About the Artists

Mezzo- Soprano Suzanna Guzmán is a native of East Los Angeles. She has performed as a soloist throughout Europe, nationally with the Metropolitan Opera, Washington National Opera, Dallas Opera, San Diego Opera, and other companies.
Tenor Greg Fedderly's change in directions focusing on the comprimario tenor repertoire has proven extremely successful, and he is now in demand in major theatres around the US and Europe.

Baritone Robin Buck has distinguished himself in Opera, Oratorio, Concert, Recital and Musical Theater, appearing in over 1000 performances of more than 45 roles (eight of them world-premieres) throughout the United States and Europe.

Bass Baritone Cedric Berry is a First Place winner in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions –Western Region. Mr. Berry has appeared at opera houses nationwide in a wide variety of roles.

Actor Malcolm McDowell has created a gallery of iconographic characters since catapulting to the screen as “Mick Travis”, the rebellious upperclassman, in Lindsay Anderson’s prize-winning sensation, IF…

--- Anne French

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