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NINA ODESCALCHI KELLY FAMILY MATINEES SHOWCASE OPERA’S RISING STARS
June 29, 2009

NINA ODESCALCHI KELLY FAMILY MATINEES SHOWCASE OPERA’S RISING STARS

CENTRAL CITY OPERA GUILD’S “TAKE A CHILD TO THE OPERA DAY”

Denver , Colo. – The talented young artists of Central City Opera’s Bonfils-Stanton Foundation Artists Training Program will take the stage for two Nina Odescalchi Kelly Family Matinee performances this summer of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lamermoor on Tuesday, July 21 at 2 p.m. and Handel’s Rinaldo on Tuesday, July 28 at 2 p.m. These special performances of this season’s festival productions offer an ideal opportunity for an afternoon of family entertainment at a special ticket price of $10 for children and $15 for adults.

Donizetti’s Lucia di Lamermoor is Italian bel canto opera at its finest. It follows the tale of two feuding families, the Ashtons and the Ravenswoods, in the Lammermuir Hills area of Lowland Scotland and the forbidden love between Lucia, an Ashton, and Edgardo, a Ravenswood. This new production set in Scotland during the mid 1800s is sung in Italian with English supertitles.

Handel’s Rinaldo is a story of love amidst battle during the First Crusade (1096-1099). Almirena, the daughter of the Christian General Goffredo, and the knight Rinaldo are torn apart during battle and must overcome adversity to be together. A new production sung in Italian with English supertitles.

Designed specifically for young audiences, a narrator guides the opera goers through the story, characters, and music of Lucia di Lamermoor prior to the opening of each act. English supertitles help everyone follow the action as the story unfolds. After the final curtain, audiences are invited to the Opera House courtyard where they can meet cast members for autographs, pictures, and to ask questions about the opera.

All roles in the family matinees are performed by members of the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation Artists Training Program, one of the most respected apprentice programs in the country. Central City Opera Artistic Director Emeritus John Moriarty founded the program in 1978. Today, 30 participants are selected from over 800 applicants through a rigorous application and audition process. After arrival in Central City, they divide their time between performing in Festival productions and classes designed to help them develop and utilize useful skills for a rewarding opera career. Samuel Ramey, Denyce Graves, Cynthia Lawrence, Franco Farina, Emily Pulley and Chad Shelton are just a few of the alumni from the program who have gone on to important careers.

Nina Odescalchi Kelly Family Matinees are economically priced for families with general admission $10 for children ages six to 18 and adult admission $15. It is recommended that all children be accompanied by an adult. Attendees receive an Opera Insider publication for a behind-the-scenes look at the opera. Tickets may be purchased through the Central City Opera Box Office by calling 303.292.6700 or by visiting www.centralcityopera.org.

Patrons can also elect to participate in the “Take a Child to the Opera Day” activities hosted by the Central City Opera House Association Guild, which includes lunch, a tour of the Opera House, games and activities, and a pre-performance meeting with a young artist. “Take a Child to the Opera Day” ticket prices are $32 for adults, $27 for children six and older. Call Central City Opera at 303.292.6700 to purchase tickets. A full list of “Take a Child to the Opera Day” activities is located below.

THE CENTRAL CITY OPERA HOUSE ASSOCIATION GUILD PRESENTS A FUN WAY TO INTRODUCE CHILDREN TO OPERA AND HISTORY

The Central City Opera House Association Guild presents “Take a Child to the Opera Day” on Tuesday, July 21 for Lucia di Lammermoor and on Tuesday, July 28 for Rinaldo. Both events take place from 11:45 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., prior to the Central City Opera Family Matinee performance.

This Annual Guild Event combines an engaging opportunity for children, ages six and older, to learn about the Gilpin County History by taking a tour of the Opera House, to visit with a Central City Opera young artist, to see a professional performance, and collect autographs from their favorite singers. The following is the day’s schedule for both July 21 and July 28:

11:45 a.m. – Meet at Williams Stables to learn the “Usher Song” and meet some of the young artists, followed by a tour of the Opera House.

12:00 p.m. – What’s behind the opera? Explore the many facets of opera through games and activities.

12:45 p.m. – Enjoy a picnic-style lunch with Central City Opera singer at the historic Teller House. Children will learn about life as a professional singer and receive a special souvenir gift.

2:00 p.m. – Attend the Family Matinee performance of Lucia di Lammermoor (July 21) or Rinaldo (July 28), with a “what-to-listen-for” introduction before each act.

Ticket prices are $32 for adults and $27 for children ages six and older . All participants will receive a family study guide in advance. Call Central City Opera Box Office at 303.292.6700 to purchase tickets.

Central City Opera House Association is the nation’s fifth-oldest opera company, located just 35 miles west of Denver in one of Colorado’s official National Landmark Historic Districts. The company continues to present artistically excellent professional opera in an annual summer festival; to offer career-entry training to young singers; to produce education and community service programs; and to preserve and maintain the Opera House and 30 other Victorian-era properties. The 2009 Summer Festival includes Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, the popular Italian bel canto style opera about feuding families in Scotland and young Lucia’s forbidden love; Sondheim’s A Little Night Music, the Tony Award® winning musical that portrays the romantic lives of couples in Swedish society; and Handel’s Italian opera Rinaldo, a heroic story of battle and love set in the time of the  First Crusade. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.centralcityopera.org or call 303-292-6700.

(Photos available upon request.)

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