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24.8.09

The Love of 'Elixir'

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Read my review in the print edition of today's Washington Post:

Charles T. Downey, Opera Bel Cantanti
Washington Post, August 24, 2009

This weekend’s performances of Opera Bel Cantanti’s new summer music festival, at Alexandria's Westminster Presbyterian Church, were timed conveniently for the slowest stretch of the classical music calendar. General Director Katerina Souvorova led an intensive two-week training program for young singers, who received coaching and master classes from professionals in return for modest fees to cover expenses. The goal was to stage an opera and present a recital of arias and scenes.

A mostly undergraduate cast, still very much vocally developing, gave a stripped-down, chorus-less version of Donizetti's airhead comedy "L'Elisir d'Amore" the old college try. If the results on Friday night were far from polished, it was remarkable that untried singers with relatively little preparation time brought off a more or less seamless performance. [Continue reading]
Donizetti, L'Elisir d'Amore
Summer Music Festival
Opera Bel Cantanti
Westminster Presbyterian Church (Alexandria, Va.)

Other recent productions of L'Elisir d'Amore:
Santa Fe Opera (2009) | Caramoor Festival (2009) | Glyndebourne (2009) | Washington National Opera (2006)

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