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Posted by on Mar 14, 2014 in News, The Voice Box | 0 comments

Wolf Trap Opera Announces Summer Season


Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts announces its 2014 summer opera productions.

Wolf Trap Opera’s (WTO) original Operascape production of Bizet’s highly popular Carmen is conducted by Grant Gershon and features the Filene Young Artists, Studio Artists, and the National Symphony Orchestra. WTO also presents a new production of Handel’s Giulio Cesare, and a rare pairing of Milhaud’s Le pauvre matelot and Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirésias, both at The Barns at Wolf Trap. This year, WTO announces internationally renowned bass-baritone Eric Owens as itsfirst Artist in Residence. An alumnus of Wolf Trap’s Filene Young Artist program, the Grammy Award-winning Owens has carved a unique place in the opera world as an esteemed interpreter of classic works and a champion of new music.

Tickets for these performances go on sale at 10 am on March 29 and can be purchased online at, by calling 1.877.WOLFTRAP, or at the Wolf Trap Box Office located at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts at 1551 Trap Road, Vienna, Virginia 22182.


Handel’s Giulio Cesare
The Barns at Wolf Trap
Friday, June 27, 2014 at 7:30 pm
Sunday, June 29, 2014 at 3 pm
Tuesday, July 1, 2014 at 7:30 pm

Handel’s most popular opera (both during his lifetime and today) focuses on Julius Caesar’s visit to Egypt in 48 BC, during which he encounters the exotic Cleopatra. Giulio Cesare in Egitto(1724) juxtaposes the virtuosity of 18th-century opera seria with a real sense of intimacy and emotion. Cesare returns to Wolf Trap for the first time since 1995.

Conductor – Antony Walker
Director -­ Chas Rader-Shieber
Scenic Design – Judy Gailen
Costume Design – Jacob Climer
Lighting Design – Robert H. Grimes
Language Consultant – Franca Gorraz
Cleopatra ­- Ying Fang, soprano
Giulio Cesare ­ – John Holiday, countertenor
Tolomeo ­ – Eric Jurenas, countertenor
Cornelia ­ – Renée Rapier, mezzo-soprano
Sesto ­ – Carolyn Sproule, mezzo-soprano
Achilla ­- Jeongcheol Cha, bass-baritone
Curio – Alex Rosen,* bass-baritone
Nireno – Kara Sainz,* soprano
*Studio Artist

Aria Jukebox
The Barns at Wolf Trap
Sunday, July 13, 2014 at 3 pm

The 2014 Filene Young Artists and special guest Eric Owens sing your favorite opera highlights with Kim Witman at the piano. Ticket price includes a wine and cheese pre-concert reception beginning at 2 pm. Come early and put your quarters in the jukebox to vote for the arias of your choice!

Houseful of Song
The Barns at Wolf Trap
Saturday, July 19, 2014 at 3 pm
Sunday, July 20, 2014 at 3 pm

Steven Blier and a trio of Filene Young Artists get domestic as they perform songs for every room in the house!

Bizet’s Carmen
Filene Center at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts
Wolf Trap Opera Company
National Symphony Orchestra
Friday, July 25, 2014 at 8:15 pm

A spellbinding drama filled with lust, jealousy, and tragedy, Carmen is opera’s ultimate temptress and one for the world’s most popular operas. Bizet’s masterpiece features many of opera’s most powerful and memorable melodies, from the bewitching “Habanera,” to the passionate “Seguidilla,” and the bravura of the “Toreador Song,” Carmen captures the imagination from the first note of the overture.

“First-rate conductor” Grant Gershon (Opera News) is resident conductor of LA Opera and music director of the Los Angeles Master Chorale.

Conductor – Grant Gershon
Director -­ Tara Faircloth
Video Projection Design – S. Katy Tucker
Costume Design – Rooth Varland
Lighting Design – Mark Stanley

Carmen, a gypsy ­- Maya Lahyani, mezzo-soprano
Don José, a corporal - Kevin Ray, tenor
Escamillo, a bullfighter - Norman Garrett, baritone
Micaëla, a country girl - Melinda Whittington, soprano
Zuniga, a lieutenant - Ryan Speedo Green, bass-baritone
Moralès, a corporal - Joo Won Kang, baritone
Frasquita, a gypsy - Mireille Asselin, soprano
Mercédès, a gypsy - Virginie Verrez, mezzo-soprano
Le Dancaïre, a smuggler - Robert Watson, tenor
Le Remendado, a smuggler - Tobias Greenhalgh, baritone

French Double Bill 
At The Barns at Wolf Trap
Milhaud’s Le pauvre matelot
Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirésias
Friday, August 8, 2014 at 7:30 pm
Sunday, August 10, 2014 at 3 pm
Saturday, August 16, 2014 at 7:30 pm

Two 20th-century French one-act operatic gems are presented in a new and unusual pairing.

The evening begins with Milhaud’s dark and dramatic Le pauvre matelot (The Poor Sailor, 1927) on a libretto by Jean Cocteau. At only 40 minutes long, Le pauvre matelot is a short study in both greed and fidelity. The sailor has gone missing for 15 years, and although his friends and family believe him dead, his wife holds out hope. He returns home unrecognizable from the passing of years and ravages of harsh climates and decides to remain anonymous to test his wife’s faithfulness.

After intermission, the drama gives way to the absurd with Poulenc’s Les mamelles de Tirésias(Tirésias’ Breasts, 1947), with text based on Apollinaire’s surrealistic play of the same name. Poulenc’s score is both beautiful and humorous and Apollinaire’s story is zany, ridiculous, and outrageous. This 55-minute opera features a feminist who changes her gender in order to escape the oppression of men (freeing herself of her breasts, hence the title) and her husband, who takes on the burden of child-bearing (40,049 of them) in order to save the human race. There are drunken gamblers, an easily duped gendarme, and a mysterious fortune-teller. Poulenc described this opera, his first, as “the work that is dearest to me.”

Conductor ­- Timothy Myers
Director ­ – Matthew Ozawa
Scenic Design – William Boles
Costume Design – Amanda Seymour
Lighting Design – Robert H. Grimes
Language Consultant – Marie-France Lefebvre

Le pauvre matelot
Le matelot (a sailor) – Robert Watson, tenor
Sa femme (his wife) ­ – Tracy Cox, soprano
Son ami­ (his friend) – Norman Garrett, baritone
Son beau-père (his father-in-law) ­- Ryan Speedo Green, bass-baritone

Les mamelles de Tirésias
Thérèse ­- Mireille Asselin, soprano
Mari – Tobias Greenhalgh, baritone
Directeur/Gendarme ­- Joo Won Kang, baritone
Lacouf – Eric Ferring,* tenor
Presto – Michael Adams,* baritone
Le Fils – Martin Clark,* tenor
La Marchande – Megan Samarin,* mezzo-soprano
Journaliste – Michael Anderson,* tenor
Une Dame – Evan Kardon,* soprano
Un Monsieur Barbu – Matt Turner,* bass
Une Grosse Dame – G. Thomas Allen,* countertenor
*Studio Artist

(Published courtesy of Wolf Trap Opera) 

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