The 1891 Fredonia Opera House continues the 2012-13 season of Live at the Met high definition opera broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera with Giuseppe Verdi's Otello, on Saturday, Oct. 27, at 1 p.m.
"To commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Giuseppe Verdi, this year's Met season features several of the master composer's operas," said Opera House Executive Director Rick Davis. "And this week's offering, Otello, is the first in that celebration."
Renee Fleming sings one of her greatest roles as the innocent Desdemona in Verdi's towering tragedy of jealousy and murder. South African tenor Johan Botha sings the title role, considered one of the most demanding parts in the operatic repertory, with German baritone Falk Struckmann as the treacherous villain Iago. Rising American tenor Michael Fabiano makes his Live at the Met debut as Cassio. Maestro Semyon Bychkov conducts this dramatic masterpiece, which is based on Shakespeare's play. As part of the Live at the Met tradition, soprano Sondra Radvanovsky, one of the Met's leading Verdi stars, hosts the satellite transmission and conducts backstage interviews with its stars before the performance and during intermission.
Renee Fleming sings one of her greatest roles as the innocent Desdemona in Verdi’s towering tragedy of jealousy and murder, Otello, while South African tenor Johan Botha sings the title role, considered one of the most demanding parts in the operatic repertory.
The New York Times praises Fleming's performance as Desdemona, noting that the role was one of her earliest successes with the company, as well as the vehicle for her first Met opening night 17 years ago, and it remains a lovely fit. "Ms. Fleming is canny about pacing herself, and she knows exactly how to spin the gentle lines of the "Willow Song" and "Ave Maria" so that they softly fill the hall. And, Falk Struckmann's forceful yet subtle Iago conveyed chillingly how Iago manages to wreak such havoc while eluding suspicion."
The production lasts three hours, 27 minutes, noted Davis. "There is one intermission during which the Opera House will have snacks, beverages and wraps available for purchase in the trustees room on the second floor of Village Hall." No food or beverage is allowed inside the theatre.
Live at the Met opera broadcasts are made possible by Dr. James M. and Marcia Merrins, who funded the purchase of the satellite transmission and projection equipment used in the series. Additional support comes from Bob and Shirley Coon, Bob and Susan Dilks, Steve and Mary Rees and DFT Communications.
Tickets to Otello are $20 ($18 for Opera House and Met members, $15 for students) and are available in advance by calling or visiting the Box Office at 716-679-1891 Tuesday Friday, 1-5 p.m. They also may be purchased online anytime at www.fredopera.org. The Opera House also is offering a new flexible opera subscription consisting of nine tickets that can be used however the patron wants one at a time to nine different operas, all at once for nine people, or anything in between. The flexible opera subscription is $161.
Chautauqua County's only performing arts center presenting its own programming year-round, the 1891 Fredonia Opera House is a member-supported not-for-profit organization located in Village Hall in downtown Fredonia. For a complete schedule of events, visit www.fredopera.org.