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ON THE TOWN: Opera transformed the Toledo Club into operatic cabaret for Gala

The Toledo Opera transformed the Toledo Club into an operatic cabaret for its 2015 Gala, Men in Black with baritone and bass voices in the spotlight. The May 9 benefit offered nearly 175 guests a chance to get up close and personal with five deep-voiced stars of previous productions.

Sunday, May 17, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Jobin to be conductor for opera, symphony

The Toledo Symphony and the Toledo Opera are making local history by appointing Sara Jobin to dual conducting posts. Arrangements for her one-year contract became final Saturday.

Ms. Jobin, a 2010 Grammy Award nominee and internationally renowned maestro of both orchestra and opera, becomes the first woman in Toledo’s long cultural history to hold either of the influential positions.

She’s the second person to hold the jobs simultaneously.

Sunday, May 3, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Shawn Mathey to sing in Toledo Opera's 'Butterfly' in fall

Bowling Green native Shawn Mathey will return to area when Toledo Opera Giacomo  Puccini's "Madama Butterfly," Oct. 2 and 4.

The production, which will star soprano Yunah Lee in her signature role of Cio-Cio San, will open the company's 2015-2016 season.

Mathey will play Pinkerton in a production conducted by Sara Jobin and directed by Chautauqua Opera's Jay Lesenger.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Toledo Opera's Men In Black gala an ‘homage to the men’

Most affairs are of the heart, but Toledo Opera’s annual Men In Black gala is a poetic affair of food, mixed with the beauty, emotion, and sound of opera.

This year’s gala is truly a feast of the senses.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Portrayal of Lucia a dream role for Kathryn Lewek

Dramatic coloratura soprano Kathryn Lewek is no stranger to Toledo Opera audiences. She earned local fandom as Zerlina in Verdi’s powerful Don Giovanni during the company’s 2013 production.

And, in a showcase of her artistic diversity, Lewek also was soloist that year in the Toledo Symphony’s performances of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana.

Still, when she takes on the title role in Lucia di Lammermoor, the Donizetti showcase that’s the final season production Friday and April 26, she will be stepping into one of the two top coloratura roles in all of opera.

Sunday, April 19, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Always performing

Based on the answers she provided to questions I asked, it is clear that  rising opera star  Kathryn Lewek, with  the passion and execution she brings to her craft, has become the leading lady, Lucia,  in the opera Lucia di Lammermoor opening April 24, on the Valentine stage. Lucia foreshadows in Act I:


"That fountain...ah...I never see it without shivering. You know the tale: A Ravenswood, mad with jealousy, stabbed his sweetheart here and the poor girl fell into the water, which became her tomb: I have seen her ghost..." (translation from murashev.com)

In this thrilling drama of murder, deception and madness, Lewek takes the stage in Toledo to dazzle us with her coloratura timbre. She'll breathe life to the blank-faced outline of a woman with a bloody knife seen on the poster and programs. How do you balance playing a character with such intensity? “Yoga and more yoga,” she says. Read on for her fantastic tale of touring, blogging, cooking, exploring and of course, singing her heart out.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Popular tale 'Susannah' combines good story, lush music

The Toledo Opera will boldly venture into contemporary American opera next weekend when it mounts its first production of Carlisle Floyd’s landmark work, Susannah.

Performances are set for 7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Feb. 15 in the Valentine Theatre.

As All-American as Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess or Aaron Copland’s The Tender Land, this 1955 work is set in rural Tennessee, peopled with country folk, and infused with the values of old-time religion.

It’s among the most frequently produced American operas, popular with companies from collegiate to New York’s Metropolitan Opera.

“It’s a sensational piece of music,” said Robert Mirakian, who will make his Toledo Opera conducting debut leading the Toledo Symphony and cast in the production.

Sunday, February 8, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


Susannah takes the midseason stage

Considering the musical tradition, some styles are more similar than others. Sure, reflection might be easy in 2015; vapor-wave (whatever that means) came and went, but how similar could Appalachian folk and opera possibly be? 

Apparently, the genres are not too far apart. In 1955, 24-year-old composer  Carlisle Floyd melded these traditions and premiered his first opera, Susannah.

Wednesday, January 14, 2015 | MORE INFO >>


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