Music by Gioachino Rossini
Photos courtesy of Opera Carolina | Mitchell Kearney Photography
Friday, May 12 – 7:30 PM
Saturday, May 13 – 7:30 PM
A traditional setting of a comic masterpiece
Distinguished director Bernard Uzan returns to present a traditional setting of Rossini’s comic masterpiece in a first-rate production. The first part in the legendary “Figaro” trilogy, Barber of Seville centers around a nobleman’s quirky attempts to woo the beautiful young Rosina away from the clutches of her overprotective guardian, but not without the help of the madcap barber-turned-matchmaker. Happy ending guaranteed!
Presented at DeVos Performance Hall
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Directed by Bernard Uzan | Conducted by Maestro Leonardo Vordoni
Sets designed by Peter Dean Beck for Opera Carolina | Made available courtesy of Utah Symphony/Utah Opera
Opera Grand Rapids Chorus | Grand Rapids Symphony
Language: Presented in Italian with English titles
For tickets, contact our Box Office at 616.451.2741 or purchase online at Ticketmaster.
Student tickets just $5 for any performance.
Student tickets can be purchased prior to the performance day or at the door. Student ID required at the door.
Casting, repertoire and event details are subject to change without notice or refunds, but are specified in good faith as accurate and updated accordingly. Refunds not accepted.
DeVos Hall Ticket Prices
SURROUNDING THE PERFORMANCE
Meet the Director | Bernard Uzan
Bernard Uzan has dedicated his life to the development of the performing arts industry for the past 50 years. His extensive background in the Performing Arts includes great achievement as a General Director, Artistic Director, Stage Director, Artist Manager, Set Designer, Librettist, Educator, Actor, and published Novelist and Internet Journalist. This season, Mr. Uzan receives a lifetime achievement award from the Giulio Gari Foundation, directs Nabucco at Pittsburgh Opera, Macbeth at Michigan Opera Theatre, then directs and mounts a massive co-production of Roméo et Juliette that will travel to Opera Carolina, Virginia Opera, Toledo Opera, Opera Grand Rapids, and Lyric Opera of Baltimore. In coming seasons, Uzan will helm a remount of Cyrano, the opera he wrote the libretto to with an original score by Dr. David DiChiera. More.
Meet the Conductor | Maestro Leonardo Vordoni
Maestro Leonardo Vordoni led a splendidly nuanced reading of verve and melting grace,” raved Opera News of his Chicago Opera Theatre début conducting Mosè in Egitto. Due to the accolades and respect earned through such performances, Maestro Vordoni is in high demand by leading opera companies throughout the world. In recent seasons, Maestro Vordoni made important débuts at Houston Grand Opera conducting I barbiere di Siviglia; Canadian Opera Company conducting La Cenerentola; and Lyric Opera of Chicago conducting Le nozze di Figaro, where the Chicago Tribune wrote “Mindful of the singers’ needs, he infused the orchestral playing with crisp vitality and shapely phrasing.” He also conducted L’elisir d’amore at Minnesota Opera and L’italiana in Algeri at Lyric Opera Kansas City. More.
Meet the Cast | David Margulis—Count Almaviva
David Margulis is emerging as a tenor with a bright future on international opera stages, praised as “radiant voiced” and for his “clear, pleasing tenor.” Of his portrayal of Tamino in Die Zauberflöte in his mainstage début at Arizona Opera, Opera Today raved: “David Margulis was an energetic Tamino who was only momentarily laid low by Pollard’s iconic monster. He sang with sumptuous lyrical sounds conveyed on a well-honed legato.” This season, he will perform the role of Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni at the Verbier Festival in Switzerland, Gherardo in Gianni Schicchi and Torquemada in L’heure espagnole with Opéra national de Lorraine, Ernesto in Don Pasquale with Opera Orlando in their inaugural season, and Florville in Il signor Bruschino with Zurich Chamber Orchestra. More.
Meet the Cast | Corey McKern—Figaro
Award-winning baritone Corey McKern continuously earns critical acclaim and accolades in every appearance he makes. “Corey McKern… has all the goods to rise to star stature – timing, stamina, vocal heft and an easy-going stage presence – especially telling in Figaro’s signature aria, ‘Largo al factotum della citta.’” Engagements this season include the role of Sharpless in Madama Butterfly with Opera Hong Kong, Owen Hart in Dead Man Walking with Pensacola Opera, and the baritone solo in Mozart in the Jungle, a concert with Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra. More.
Meet the Cast | Ginger Costa-Jackson—Rosina
Sicilian-born mezzo-soprano Ginger Costa-Jackson was noted recently to have created a woman whose joie de vivre could destroy any man in her path. (TCO Debut) As the New York Times observed, Ginger Costa-Jackson is a ravishing mezzo-soprano from Italy. Her voice has dark, rich colorings and considerable body. Ginger has enjoyed having sung at some of the lead houses in the world. This year, in particular, is very exciting for Ms Costa-Jackson as she is anticipating singing with some of the world’s most renowned opera companies. She is excited to announce she will be debuting her first lead role at the Metropolitan Opera in The Barber of Seville as Rosina. Ginger will be returning to San Francisco Opera to perform her first title role with the company as Carmen in Bizet’s Carmen. Ginger will also perform Carmen at the Michigan Opera Theater. She will also be returning to Europe to perform a role at Opéra national de Paris in a new production that will soon be announced. More.
Meet the Cast | Kevin Langan—Basilio
Kevin Langan earned a sterling reputation as a leading performer in opera and concert with international audiences. Mr. Langan was the last protégé of Walter Legge, the legendary operatic record producer and promoter, and husband to Elizabeth Schwarzkopf. Under their sponsorship, he began his extensive career with a critically acclaimed recital at The Wigmore Hall in London. His “deep, toffee-smooth voice and convincing interpretive abilities” (New York Times) have made him a favorite in opera companies throughout the world. His career currently spans 36 years and over 1300 performances covering a vast repertoire of over 80 roles from early Baroque through 21st Century works, with the majority of his work in Händel, Mozart, and Verdi operas. This season, Mr. Langan performs the roles of Basilio in Il barbiere di Siviglia with Toledo Opera and Opera Carolina, Cuno in Der Freischütz with Virginia Opera, and Dr. Grenvil in La traviata with San Diego Opera. He will also be a part of a concert with The Florence Voice Program at Westminster Choir College. More.
Meet the Cast | Peter Strummer—Bartolo
One of America’s foremost character bass-baritones, Peter Strummer has earned a reputation for endowing his buffo characterizations with incredible depth and humanity. His signature portrayals have been described as “highly individual, each formidably different whether as Bartolo or Don Magnifico or Beckmesser or Pasquale.” This season, engagements include Benoit/Alcindoro in La bohème at Syracuse Opera and Candy in Of Mice and Men at Manitoba Opera. In future seasons, Mr. Strummer will perform at Kentucky Opera. More.
Meet the Cast | Kimberly Sogioka—Berta
Praised by Opera (UK) as “…the most opulent female sound on the stage…”young mezzo-soprano Kimberly Sogioka is drawing much attention as an exciting artist on opera and concert stages. A frequent collaborator with composers on new music projects, Ms. Sogioka created the role of Nurse 3 in the Metropolitan Opera and English National Opera workshop of Michael Torke’s Senna, was a mezzo soloist in the Metropolitan Opera workshop of Scott Wheeler’s The Sorrow’s of Frederick, collaborated with Clint Borzoni in his operas Margot Alone in the Light and Antinous and Hadrian, and also with Stephen Andrew Taylor in scenes from his opera Paradises Lost with Operamission. More.
Meet the Cast | Isaac Bray—Fiorello
Isaac Bray is quickly earning a reputation as a versatile performer in a variety of roles. He is a recent alumnus of the Florida Grand Opera Young Artist Studio where his assignments included Zurga in Les pêcheurs de perles, Ben in Menotti’s comic opera The Telephone, Assan in The Consul, Sharpless in Madama Butterfly, and Guglielmo in Così fan tutte, from which EDGE Magazine wrote: “As Guglielmo, baritone Isaac Bray gave an impressive and outstanding performance. Bray’s voice has a nice warm tone and is very beautiful.” This season, Mr. Bray will reprise the role of Le Dancaïre in Carmen with Opera San Antonio and sing the baritone solo in William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast with Bangor Symphony. More.
In Seville, an enamored Count Almaviva sings to woo the beautiful Rosina, kept under lock and key by her guardian, Doctor Bartolo, who intends to marry her. Local madcap barber, Figaro, devises a peculiar plan to help Almaviva win Rosina by disguising the Count as a drunken solider under orders to be quartered at Bartolo’s home. The wits of the lowly barber are pitted against those of the aged doctor when Bartolo grows suspicious of their antics. Figaro and Almaviva go to greater lengths to get closer to Rosina and prevent her marriage to Bartolo.
About Gioachino Rossini
Known as Italian opera’s comic genius and the leading opera composer of the first half of the 19th century, Gioachino Rossini (1792-1868) was nicknamed “The Italian Mozart” for good reason. Born to a musical family – his father a trumpet player, his mother an opera singer – Rossini mastered composition at an early age, writing his first opera at age 8 and becoming a national celebrity by the time he was 21.
Between 1808 and 1829, Rossini composed no fewer than 40 operas. Often considered as the quintessential comic opera, Barber of Seville is one of his greatest successes. With the exception of the now famous overture, Rossini composed The Barber of Seville in just three weeks.