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 April 2009 - Nr. 4
Happy Easter - Frohe Ostern

Toronto Operetta Theatre’s 24th Season comes to a close with five performances of Gilbert and Sullivan’s seventh light opera, IOLANTHE or ‘The Peer and the Peri’.  The performances will be at the St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, 27 Front Street East, Toronto on April 18, 19 (mat), 24, 25, and 26 (mat), 2009.  Robert Cooper leads a stellar cast, chorus and orchestra with stage direction by TOT General Director, Guillermo Silva-Marin.

The opening night of IOLANTHE in 1882 at the brand new Savoy Theatre -  the first theatre in the world to be wired for electricity -  had a glittering crowd in attendance including the Prime Minister, The Prince of Wales and even Captain Shaw of the Metropolitan Fire Brigade.  The work caught both Gilbert and Sullivan at the height of their creative powers.  Sullivan parodied Mendelssohn and Wagner in particular; there is even a leitmotif for the Fairy Queen and her music has obvious echoes of Wagnerian heroines like Brünnhilde.  For his part, Gilbert takes customary potshots at the aristocracy, politics and the military, introducing males into a blissful female world where contact with ‘mortal love’ wreaks havoc with the status quo.

"Gilbert and Sullivan’s world of music and text needs singer/actors of extraordinary talent and I’m pleased we’ve been able to assemble a cast with a talent for both" said Silva-Marin.  Elizabeth DeGrazia (PHANTOM OF THE OPERA and TOT’s PATIENCE and GONDOLIERS) will be Phyllis, the Lord Chancellor’s ward and beloved of Strephon, the Arcadian shepherd sung by debuting baritone Corey O’Brien, who was featured in the Stratford Festival’s CABARET, MY FAIR LADY and THE SOUND OF MUSIC. David Ludwig – a triumph in TOT’s recent KNICKERBOCKER HOLIDAY – will be the Lord Chancellor and chief fly in the ointment of Phyllis and Strephon’s happiness.  Wendy Hatala Foley sings the role of the Fairy Queen who finds herself madly infatuated by Private Willis of the Grenadier Guards, sung by Andrew Tees whose recent credits include Opera Hamilton, plus the Cleveland and Manitoba Operas. Rounding out the cast are Mia Harris, Lawrence Cotton and Patrick Jang, all making their TOT debuts.

Call the TOT office for tickets 416-922-2912

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