THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Opera for the Young Performs in Marinette
The Opera for the Young (OFTY) company will present an adaptation of Donizetti's "The Elixir of Love" on Jan. 17-18. The schedule includes Garfield Elementary on Jan. 17th at 9:30 a.m., followed by a 1:30 p.m. performance at Merryman Elementary.
The Park Elementary performance is Wednesday, Jan. 18th at 9:30 a.m. The performances last approximately an hour, and the public is invited to attend.
Opera for the Young brings live, professional opera to elementary school audiences. All productions are fully staged, sung in English and adapted especially for children. Students selected for the student chorus appear onstage in chorus and cameo roles. OFTY audiences become acquainted with the original scores of master composers, set in contexts relevant to kids' 21st century lives. Opera for the Young annually presents 200 performances, reaching 80,000 children every school year throughout Wisconsin, northern Illinois, Indiana and eastern Minnesota.
This year's performance of "The Elixir of Love" is set in the Old West. Miss Addy (Adina) is a wealthy rancher greatly admired by Jimmy Reno (Nemorino), a lovesick cowpoke. Swaggering cavalry sergeant Bill Corey (Belcore), competes for her affections. Rounding out the ensemble is a peddler of cure-alls, Dr. Dulcamara (sung by a mezzo soprano), and the Townsfolk of Lonesome Gulch, portrayed by Marinette students. Things get complicated when Dulcamara sells Jimmy a delicious elixir of love (root beer in OFTY's adaptation). Jimmy soon discovers that the elixir does not solve his problem and only causes him more difficulties. Of course, all ends happily and along the way Jimmy, Addy and the audience learn an important lesson about honest communication and being true to one's own feelings. Together they realize that the human heart, in its pursuit and expression of love, needs no magic potions.
Every OFTY production features four professional singers and one pianist. Professional cast members are selected after competitive auditions held each spring in Chicago and Madison. All professional roles are triple cast. Recent cast members have included a Grammy award winner, Metropolitan Opera national audition winners, several Met regional winners, artists with doctorates, many with master's degrees, choristers from the Lyric Opera of Chicago and members of the Chicago Symphony Chorus. All are conservatory graduates and active recitalists. Questions may be directed to the elementary music teachers, Deb Reinke and Amy McClellan, 715-735-2516.