Opera from the orchestra pit

When most people think of opera, they think of the singers on the stage. However, in an opera, the orchestra plays an equally important role. Grand Rapids Symphony musicians Barbara Corbató, Assistant Principal Viola, and Alexander Miller, Assistant Principal Oboe, understand this well.

“The orchestra and voices on stage are so dependent on each other.

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Posted in Uncategorized


Figaro gets his own ice cream flavor

Opera Grand Rapids teams up with Love’s Ice Cream (yet again) to unveil a new ice cream flavor in celebration of Opera Grand Rapids’ upcoming production of The Barber of Seville.

Inspired by The Barber of Seville’s title character–the ever-wacky,

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Posted in Uncategorized


Remembering the classic “Rabbit of Seville”

It’s no surprise that Rabbit of Seville, a Warner Bros. Looney Tunes theatrical cartoon short released in 1950, was voted #12 of the 50 Greatest Cartoons of all time by members of the animation field.

Director Chuck Jones and writer Michael Maltese draw on Rossini’s opera The Barber of Seville for inspiration,

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Posted in Opera in Pop Culture


Opera Grand Rapids teams up with Brewery Vivant for “Beer of Seville”

The Barber of Seville’s most famous aria is “Largo al factotum,” though Bugs Bunny fans may know it simply as “Figaro! Figaro! Figaro!” The title character, local barber Figaro, belts this tongue-twisting piece by way of introduction, establishing a personality at once bombastic, bold, and able.

Perhaps the barber had a taste of what Vivant was brewing.

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Posted in News


The story of a composer’s opera premiere

Gioachino Rossini’s Il barbiere di Siviglia

Few operas have had more sensational openings than The Barber of Seville. Accounts of the fiasco vary in detail, but all agree Rome’s Teatro Argentina audience feasted at young Rossini’s expense. Everything that could go wrong did,

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Posted in Program Notes


Q&A with The Barber of Seville Conductor Maestro Leonardo Vordoni

“Leonardo Vordoni’s musical direction was faultless, the Italian conductor bringing lively tempos, idiomatic pacing, and attentive detailing… with scrupulous balancing of ensembles and chorus throughout.” – Chicago Classical Review

“The very enjoyable performance redounded to the credit of rising conductor Leonardo Vordoni, who jumped in with zero orchestral rehearsal and gave a cogent,

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Posted in Artist Q&A


Q&A with The Barber of Seville Director Bernard Uzan

Uzan’s 400 productions have graced the stages of one hundred opera companies in North America, France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, and South America. He has also co-designed more than fifty productions.

 

Bernard Uzan, a native of France, is a graduate of the University of Paris where he earned doctorates in literature,

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Posted in Artist Q&A


Opera Grand Rapids welcomes Artistic Director Maestro Meena

Meet Opera Grand Rapids Artistic Director Maestro James Meena. In charge of programming and educational initiatives beginning in the 2017-2018 season—the same season Opera Grand Rapids celebrates its 50-year legacy— Mo. Meena’s duties include selecting repertoire, hiring guest artists and production teams, auditioning singers, and ensuring the artistic excellence of all Opera Grand Rapids’

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Posted in News