The Ellie Caulkins Opera House
Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro
- 12 2019
THE MOST BELOVED OF COMIC OPERAS
The wily Figaro and his love, Susanna, are set to marry, but Count Almaviva is intent on seducing the bride-to-be—stoking not only the couple’s ire, but the frustrations of the long-suffering Countess. What unfolds is hilarious chaos set to a sparkling score.
The Ellie Caulkins Opera House at Denver Performing Arts Complex
Estimated Length: Three hours, including one 20-minute intermission
Performed in Italian, with English and Spanish subtitles at every seat.
The May 12th performance will be audio described.
THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO IS SPONSORED BY:
Richard King Brown
with additional support provided by Ellie Caulkins
Italian bass-baritone Simone Alberghini, 1994 Operalia Grand Prize winner, has appeared in opera houses at the highest level worldwide since the beginning of his career, singing at the Royal Opera House, Metropolitan Opera, Washington National Opera, Wiener Staatsoper, Teatro La Fenice, Teatro Regio, the Glyndebourne Festival, the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro, Teatro di San Carlo, Teatro Comunale, the Bolshoi Theatre, and many others. Recent engagements include Guillaume Tell at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro and in Bologna; Donizetti’s Il furioso all’ isola di San Domingo at the Donizetti Musica Festival in Bergamo and on tour in Italy; L’Elisir d’Amore in Washington; Anna Bolena at the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall in Moscow; Così fan tutte in Bologna and Firenze; Don Giovanni at the Perm State Opera under Teodor Currentzis; La Bohème in Tenerife and in Palermo; Les Contes d’Hoffmann in Toulon; La Cenerentola in Washington, Naples and Gothenburg; Mozart’s Requiem in Turin with the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai; La Gazza Ladra at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro; Il Trovatore in Tenerife; Il Turco in Italia in Ravenna; Donizetti’s Requiem with the Copenhagen Philharmonic Orchestra; and Carmen in Bologna.
American soprano Ellie Dehn has been praised by critics as “a revelation” (Chicago Sun-Times), acclaimed for her “great stage presence and a voice combining metallic clarity and sensual richness” (Wall Street Journal).
In the 2017-2018 season, Ms. Dehn makes her role debut as the title role in Massenet’s Manon at the San Francisco Opera opposite tenor Michael Fabiano; makes her company debut at Dallas Opera as Donna Elvira in Mozart’s Don Giovanni; returns to the Grand Théâtre de Genève as the Countess in Figaro Gets a Divorce, a modern addition to the Figaro trilogy composed by Elena Langer; and will reprise the role of Musetta in Puccini’s La Bohème at the Teatro di San Carlo di Napoli. Concert appearances include Handel’s Messiah at Saint Thomas Church in New York City and with the Florida Orchestra.
Ms. Dehn’s 2016-2017 season included her company debut at the Teatro di San Carlo as Musetta in La Bohème, and her return to San Francisco Opera in the same role under the baton of Maestro Carlo Montanaro. She also returned to San Diego Opera for her role debut as Alice Ford in Verdi’s Falstaff.
Soprano Maureen McKay is praised and celebrated for her silvery soprano and dynamic character portrayals. This season, McKay makes her much-anticipated Metropolitan Opera debut as Gretel in Hansel and Gretel and returns to San Diego Opera as Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance.
Future projects include returns to the Lyric Opera of Kansas City and her debut with Virginia Opera. Recent highlights include Nanetta in Falstaff in her San Deigo Opera debut; Pamina in Die Zauberflöte with Komische Oper Berlin, Gran Teatre del Liceu, Portland Opera, Washington National Opera, Edingburgh International Festival, Opera Colorado, and Lyric Opera of Kansas City; Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel with Bayerische Staatsoper, Opera Philadelphia, Portland Opera, Komische Oper Berlin, and Tulsa Opera; Susanna in Le nozze di Figaro with Lyric Opera of Kansas City and Opera Cleveland; and her mainstage debut with Seattle Opera as Léïla in Les pêcheurs de perles.
McKay is a former member of Seattle Opera’s Young Artists Program and was a Filene Young Artist with Wolf Trap Opera Company. She earned her Bachelor of Music at Columbus State University in Georgia (summa cum laude) and her Master of Music at The Ohio State University.
Bass-baritone Ryan Kuster is gaining national recognition for his recent appearances as Escamillo in Carmen with Virginia Opera, Opera Colorado, Opera Grand Rapids, Florida Grand Opera, and Knoxville Opera. Of his performance with Opera Colorado, The Boulder Daily Camera wrote, “Baritone Ryan Kuster possesses a swaggering virility… The character has the most famous of all the opera’s many great tunes, and Kuster’s delivery does not disappoint.”
Most recently, Kuster returned to Dallas Opera as Dr. Grenvil in La traviata and Old Hebrew in Samson et Dalila. Last season, he performed the role of Escamillo in Peter Brook’s La tragédie of Carmen with San Diego Opera, Don Basilio in On Site Opera’s production of Le nozze di Figaro, Colline in La bohème with The Charleston Opera, Escamillo in Carmen with Florida Grand Opera, a concert titled “Arias and Ensembles” with Dallas Opera, and a concert with Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra.
Adriana Zabala enjoys a vibrant and unique career that includes opera, song repertoire, new works, concert and oratorio. Within the last few seasons, Ms. Zabala has been seen with Seattle Opera, Florentine Opera, Minnesota Opera, Wolf Trap Opera, Arizona Opera, Opera Saratoga, Minnesota Orchestra, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, the Jacksonville Symphony, the Virginia Symphony, the Madison Symphony, the New York Festival of Song, and at the Caramoor International Music Festival among others.
Recent highlights include the title role in Sister Carrie with Florentine Opera; Amore in L’abore di Diana and Lucy Talbot in Dinner at Eight with Minnesota Opera; the Komponist in Ariadne auf Naxos with Berkshire Opera Festival; Handel’s Messiah with the Charlotte Symphony; Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with Quad City Symphony and the Colorado Symphony; and Pergolesi’s Stabat Mater with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. Adriana’s 2017-2018 season includes appearances as Cherubino in Le nozze di Figaro with Minnesota Opera, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony with the Handel & Haydn Society, Manja in the world premiere of Steal a Pencil for Me with Opera Colorado, and Paula in Florencia en el Amazonas with both San Diego Opera and Madison Opera.
Known for her powerful voice and galvanizing performances, mezzo-soprano Margaret Gawrysiak’s engagements this season include the Old Lady in Candide with The Knights at Tanglewood and Ravinia, Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro for her return to Opera Colorado, and Emma Jones in Street Scene with Virginia Opera. Future seasons will include a debut with Dallas Opera. The 2017-2018 season saw a return to Seattle Opera as Berta in The barber of Seville, and appearances with the Seattle Symphony for Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and New York City Ballet for Stravinsky’s Les noces. During the 2016-2017 season, the mezzo-soprano performed as Marcellina in Le nozze di Figaro and Ruth in The Pirates of Penzance with Lyric Opera of Kansas City; Zita and Frugola in Opera Company of Middlebury’s production of Il Trittico; and the Old Lady in Candide with Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra.
Stefano de Peppo is one of opera’s busiest singing actors sought after for the Italian character bass parts in operas by Donizetti, Rossini, and Mozart such as the title role in Don Pasquale, Dulcamara in L’Elisir d’Amore, Magnifico in La Cenerentola, Mustafa in L’Italiana in Algeri, Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Leporello in Don Giovanni, title role in Le Nozze di Figaro, and Alphonso in Cosi fan tutte. Other notable roles include the Sacristan in Tosca, Schaunard in La Bohème, and Geronte in Manon Lescaut. Notable theaters in which he has appeared include the Finnish National Opera, Estates Theater in Prague, Teatro Argentina in Rome, Italy, Jerez de la Frontiera and Gran Teatro de Cordoba in Spain, and Tenerife, Spain (all as Leporello), Teatro Colon in Bogota, Colombia (Bartolo), Teatro Bellas Artes in Mexico City (Leporello, Magnifico, Dulcamara, Publio, Bartolo, the King in Aida and Schaunard), Teatro Aquascalientes in Mexico (Dulcamara), New Israeli Opera (Alphonso), Opera Hamilton in Canada (Mustafa), and Sarasota Opera (Kelbar in Un Giorno di Regno, Bartolo and Magnifico). Recent engagements include The Atlanta Opera as Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, San Diego Opera and Inter Mountain Opera as Magnifico, Chautauqua Opera and Monterrey, Mexico in the title role of Don Pasquale, Royal Albert Hall (London) as Schaunard in La Bohème, Indiana University as Mustafa, Arizona Opera and Austin Opera as Sulpice in La Fille du Regiment, Opera Santa Barbara and Indiana University as Mustafa. The coming season will see him in Atlanta as Sulpice and on tour throughout France as Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia.
Aaren Rivard earned his master’s degree from Wichita State University, where he studied with Alan Held and Sam Ramey; and his bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern Maine, where he studied with Ellen Chickering. He has performed several times with Opera Maine, including in the company’s productions of The Daughter of the Regiment, Madama Butterfly, La Bohème, Rigoletto, and Tosca. He was also an Opera Maine Studio Artist for Gianni Schicchi, in which he sang the role of Amantio di Nicolao and covered Rinuccio. Most recently, he was a 2018 Apprentice Artist with Des Moines Metro Opera. As an Opera Colorado Artist in Residence during the 2018-19 season, Rivard will sing the mainstage roles of Gastone in La Traviata and both Basilio and Don Curzio in The Marriage of Figaro. As part of the company’s touring productions, he performs the Witch in Hansel and Gretel, and Romeo in Romeo & Juliet.
Sponsored by Donald K. Braden and Chris & Joy Murphy
Praised for her bell-like and crisp tone, native Houstonian soprano Rebekah Howell is making her mark as a versatile stage artist with “plenty of high notes” (The Herald Times). During the 2018-19 season at Opera Colorado, she will perform the mainstage roles of Annina in La Traviata, Girl in After Life, and Barbarina in The Marriage of Figaro. She will also cover Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro, in addition to singing the role for the Student Matinee performance. As part of the company’s touring productions, she performs Gretel in Hansel and Gretel, and Juliet in Romeo & Juliet. In the summer of 2018, Howell debuted the roles of Zerlina in Don Giovanni and Cunegonde in Candide with Chautauqua Opera. During the 2017–18 season, Howell appeared as Queen of the Night in The Magic Flute with Opéra Louisiane and as the soprano soloist in Carmina Burana with the Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra. Howell holds degrees from Baylor University (BM) and Indiana University (MM) where she also served as an Associate Instructor of Voice.
Sponsored by Agatha Kessler & Curtis Fentress and Laurence & Cynthia Chan
Originally from Thornton, CO, Eric McConnell has trained as a young artist with Central City Opera, Opera Saratoga, Seagle Music Colony, and the Aspen Opera Center. As an Opera Colorado Artist in Residence this season, McConnell will also perform the mainstage roles of Dr. Grenvil in La Traviata and Antonio in The Marriage of Figaro, and sing Figaro in the Student Matinee performance. With the company’s touring productions, he performs Sandman in Hansel and Gretel and Friar Laurence in Romeo & Juliet. Past roles for McConnell include Blitch (Susannah), Bartolo/Basilio (The Barber of Seville), Simone (Gianni Schicchi), Frank (Die Fledermaus), Sacristan/Jailer (Tosca), and Sarastro (The Magic Flute). Additional career highlights include singing Elisha Fitzgibbon in the orchestral premiere of Evan Mack’s Roscoe with the Albany Symphony Orchestra, in a performance featuring renowned soprano Deborah Voigt. McConnell holds degrees from Northwestern University and the University of Miami.
Sponsored by Joyce de Roos and Marlis Smith
Appointed in 2015 as Opera Colorado’s first-ever music director, Ari Pelto’s “breathtaking wizardry in the pit” (The Denver Post) has been widely celebrated, with Pelto in demand at opera houses and concert halls throughout the United States. At the age of 24, Pelto was appointed Assistant Conductor at the Spoleto Festival and he has since gone on to conduct worldwide. International engagements include performances with Bochumer Philharmoniker and opera productions at New National Theatre of Tokyo and the Teatro Nacional Sucre in Quito, Ecuador. In 2004 he made his highly-praised debut with New York City Opera, conducting La Traviata, after which he became a regular, returning for productions of Madama Butterfly, La Bohème, and Carmen. Recent successes include Eugene Onegin at Lyric Opera of Kansas City, Lucia de Lammermoor at Virginia Opera, and La Voix Humaine at Chicago Opera Theater. Here in Denver, he has led many acclaimed performances; this season, in addition to La Traviata, Pelto will conduct Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro in May 2019.
American stage director Matthew Ozawa has an international career spanning all artistic disciplines, having worked for prestigious companies worldwide including Canadian Opera Company, Lyric Opera of Chicago, San Francisco Opera, Santa Fe Opera, Opera Siam, Macau International Festival, and Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Additional, Ozawa is the founder and artistic director of Mozawa, a Chicago-based incubator advancing collaborative art and artists.
Upcoming engagements a new production of Il barbiere di Siviglia, and the world premiere of An American Soldier for Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. His most recent acclaimed productions include La Bohème (Opera Colorado), A Little Night Music (Des Moines Metro Opera/Houston Grand Opera), Sweeney Todd (Skylight Music Theater), Celebrating Placido Domingo (Lyric Opera of Chicago), Madama Butterfly (Arizona Opera), Don Quichotte (Lyric Opera of Chicago), Romeo and Juliet (Minnesota Opera), Frankenstein(West Edge Opera), L’Opera Seria (American Premiere at Wolf Trap Opera), and After the Storm (World Premiere at Houston Grand Opera).