Programming Features Classic Favorites, A Story of Racial Injustice named “Best New Opera,” and a Concert Performance by International Superstar Lisette Oropesa 

MEDIA CONTACT: Mariah Forde, mforde@neworleansopera.org, 240-506-7789 
DATE: March 31, 2023

New Orleans, LA – The New Orleans Opera Association (NOOA) announces its 2023-2024 season featuring productions at the Mahalia Jackson Theater. This season builds on the New Orleans Opera Association’s mission to enrich the lives of all people by producing opera of the highest artistic quality, and its vision for an opera world that is accessible to and representative of all voices. Through these four productions, audiences can immerse themselves in the powerful depictions of real-world experiences and emotions that transpire in our lives and communities. For more information, visit www.neworleansopera.com.

“The New Orleans Opera Association is proud to bring another robust season of opera to our beautiful city – the North American birthplace of the art form,” said Clare Burovac, General and Artistic Director. “Incredible stories will be told through well-loved classics, new works and a one-of-a-kind concert of operatic vocal fireworks featuring one of New Orleans’ own. This will be a season for all opera lovers to enjoy,”

The season features opera’s acclaimed artists including sopranos Lisette Oropesa, Laquita Mitchell, Katrina Galka, and Cadie J. Bryan, mezzo-soprano Krysty Swann, tenors Yongzhao Yu and Jonathan Pierce Rhodes, baritones Alexander Birch Elliot, Kenneth Overton, Gordon Hawkins, and Theo Hoffman, and bass Anthony Reed. Stage directors include Chas Rader-Shieber, Timothy Douglas, and Brenna Corner. Conductors include Elizabeth Askren, Michael Ellis Ingrahm, Joseph Colaneri, and Joseph Mechavich.

NOOA COMMUNITY AND EDUCATION PROGRAMS
The New Orleans Opera Association continues its commitment to providing education opportunities through traditional and innovative approaches. Leading up to each production, audiences are invited to engage in conversation with artists and thought leaders during NOOA’s Community Conversations, a discussion on the opera’s thematic topic and its impact on the community, and Opera Orientations, a community meet and greet with members of the cast hosted by the Women’s Guild of the New Orleans Opera Association. For more information, visit www.neworleansopera.com.

Sponsored by the Louise Baehr Martin Memorial Fund, free student tickets are available through the Student Night Out program. School groups and community organizations can share the opera experience with students by attending fully staged dress rehearsals. Registration information can be found at www.neworleansopera.com/student-night-out.

TICKETS
Pre-sale subscription packages are available now through April 18th. Single tickets go on sale July 1st. Pricing information can be found on the opera’s website at www.neworleansopera.org. Tickets can be purchased online or by calling the New Orleans Opera Box Office Monday – Friday from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM at (504) 529-3000.

The 2022 – 2023 New Orleans Opera Season
At Mahalia Jackson Theater of the Performing Arts

THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO September 29, 2023 (7:30 PM) and October 1, 2023 (2:30 PM) Nuts and Bolts Lecture one hour before the performance Student Night Out – September 27, 2022

Taking place over a single day in Count Almaviva’s estate outside of Seville, Spain, Susanna and Figaro, servants of the Count and Countess, plan their wedding. When Figaro learns that the Count has tried to seduce Susanna, he sets out for revenge. Together with Susanna, The Countess, and the count’s page, Cherubino, Figaro concocts a plan of deception and manipulation in order to ensnare the Count in his own scheming. Although the Count tries to retaliate with his own daring plan to marry Figaro off to another, much older woman, his plan laughably falls to pieces when the true identity of the older woman is revealed. Fortunately for Figaro and Susanna, the day ends with peace between the Count and Countess, finally making it possible for their own marriage to proceed.

Composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Librettist, Lorenzo Da Ponte Director, Chas Rader-Shieber Conductor, Elizabeth Askren, The Jerry W. Zachary and Henry Bernstein Maestro Chair Figaro, Anthony Reed Susanna, Cadie J. Bryan Count, Theo Hoffman Countess, Laquita Mitchell.

BLUE November 10, 2023 (7:30 PM) and November 12, 2023 (2:30 PM) Nuts and Bolts Lecture one hour before the performance Student Night Out – November 8, 2022 The New Orleans Opera Association premiere of Blue is presented by The Ranney and Emel Songu Mize Chamber Opera Series. A loving Black couple anticipates the arrival of their first child. The Mother, a restaurant owner, and The Father, a police officer, are warmly supported by their friends over the arrival of their baby boy. Sixteen years later, The Son is now a young artist and activist. The Son and The Father clash, finding themselves at odds with their views on policing and protesting. The family grapples with the harsh realities of present-day America. When the parents’ worst nightmare is realized, The Mother and The Father navigate their fear and anger over the loss of their son. They turn to their church and their community to question, and to grieve, together.

Composer, Jeanine Tesori Librettist, Tazewell Thompson Director, Timothy Douglas Conductor, Michael Ellis Ingram, The Jerry W. Zachary and Henry Bernstein Maestro Chair The Mother, Krysty Swann The Father, Kenneth Overton The Son, Jonathan Pierce Rhodes The Reverend, Gordon Hawkins.

LISETTE OROPESA IN CONCERT December 1, 2023 (7:30 PM) Lisette Oropesa in Concert is generously underwritten by John G. Turner & Jerry G. Fischer. Chevalier de l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres awardee and New Orleans native Lisette Oropesa curates an evening of French and Italian arias inspired by her recent album release: French Bel Canto Arias. The program features arias from the Bel Canto period by composers such as Donizetti, Rossini and Bellini, among others.

“Oropesa’s thoughtful choice of repertory is balanced by performances of comparable insight and brilliance. She’s in wonderful voice throughout, her coloratura at once dazzling and expressive, her sense of line often flawless, text, character and emotions exactingly conveyed.” -Gramophone
Joining the program will be conductor Joseph Colaneri, mezzo-soprano Ashley Dixon, tenor Carlos Enrique Santelli and baritone Blake Denson.

LUCIA DI LAMMERMOOR March 22, 2023 (7:30 PM) and March 24, 2024 (2:30 PM) Nuts and Bolts Lecture one hour before the performance Student Night Out – March 20, 2022

An intruder is detected near the Scottish home of the Ashton family (Lammermoor Castle). A guard confirms to Enrico, Lord of Lammermoor, that the intruder is Edgardo of Ravenswood, a long rival. He has come for Lucia, Enrico’s sister. Lucia meets Edgardo where they exchange rings and vow to marry. Meanwhile, Enrico works to marry Lucia off to Lord Arturo Bucklaw by using a forged letter to show that Edgardo has taken a new lover. He also recruits his chaplain, and Lucia’s tutor, Raimondo, to apply pressure. Although Lucia is in distress, Arturo arrives and the marriage contract is signed. Edgardo then appears, livid at Lucia’s apparent betrayal.
Later, Enrico challenges Edgardo to a duel, claiming that Lucia is happily married. Back at Lammermoor Castle, Raimondo interrupts the celebrations to inform everyone that Lucia has gone mad and killed her new groom Arturo. Enrico, first incensed at Lucia, soon softens when he realizes her mental state. Finally, Enrico meets Edgardo at the Ravenswood family graveyard for the duel. When Edgardo learns that Lucia is dying, he stabs himself with a dagger, hoping to reunite with his love in Heaven.

Composer, Gaetano Donizetti Librettist, Salvadore Cammarano Director, Brenna Corner Conductor, Joseph Mechavich, The Jerry W. Zachary and Henry Bernstein Maestro Chair Lucia, Katrina Galka Edgardo, Yongzhao Yu Enrico, Alexander Birch Elliot.

ABOUT NEW ORLEANS OPERA ASSOCIATION
New Orleans Opera Association (NOOA), which begins its 81st season on July 1, 2023, is committed to enriching the lives of all people by producing operas of the highest artistic quality and providing educational opportunities through traditional and innovative approaches. NOOA aspires to connect people to the arts and each other through the joy of opera. For more information, see www.neworleansopera.org or call the Box Office at (504) 529-3000.
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