Soprano June Anderson Steps In At The Last Minute For The COC’s Production Of Norma
Toronto, ON – After a last-minute international search the
COC is delighted to announce that American dramatic coloratura soprano June
Anderson will step in to sing at least the first three performances of
Bellini’s bel canto masterpiece, Norma. Russian soprano
Elena Prokina, who was scheduled to perform, is delayed and unable to begin
rehearsals due to severe bronchitis. Norma’s famous aria "Casta diva" is
well-loved by opera-goers and this production’s striking sets and costumes
provide a vivid backdrop for Bellini’s sweeping emotions and high
theatricality. Canadian François Racine directs this production and is
joined by American conductor David T. Heusel. Norma runs March 30 at
7:30 p.m., April 4 at 7:30 p.m., 7 at 7:30 p.m., 9 at 2 p.m., 12 at 7:30
p.m., 15 at 7:30 p.m., 2006 at the Hummingbird Centre for the Performing
Arts and is sung in Italian with English SURTITLES™.
Set in ancient Gaul during the time of the Roman Empire,
Bellini’s dramatic opera tells a tragic tale of consuming passion and
devastating betrayal. Having broken her vows and betrayed her people by
loving a Roman officer, Norma finds her life in turmoil with the discovery
that she’s been cast aside for another woman. The role of the Druid high
priestess Norma, one of the most demanding roles in the soprano repertoire,
marks June Anderson’s COC debut. In her performance of Norma at the
Lyric Opera of Chicago, Ms Anderson’s "clear, bright upper range was at its
clarion best, the soprano singing with strength and nuanced sensitivity ...
dramatically, Anderson was exceptional, drawing out all of the conflicting
emotions with an intensity tempered by dignity." (Chicago Tribune)
She was also hailed for her recent performance in Daphne at La Fenice:
Ms Anderson’s "singing offered countless ravishments: crystalline timbre,
clean-cut line-delineation, dead-on-target intonation, awesomely easy
projection of one perilously exposed high phrase after another." (Opera)
Hungarian tenor Attila Fekete makes his Canadian debut as
Norma’s Roman lover Pollione, a role he sang with the Hungarian State Opera.
Ukrainian-born, American mezzo-soprano Marianna Kulikova makes her COC debut
as Adalgisa, a role she will sing again with l’Opéra de Nice this fall.
Czech bass Zdeněk Plech makes his Canadian debut singing Oroveso, Norma’s
father. COC Ensemble Studio soprano Yannick-Muriel Noah makes her COC
mainstage debut as Clotilde, Norma’s confidante and Ensemble baritone Peter
Barrett is the centurion Flavio.
Created for the COC in 1998, this production is re-imagined
by director François Racine. Mr. Racine worked with Robert Lepage on the
COC’s production of Bluebeard’s Castle/Erwartung, and has supervised
and restaged that production at the Edinburgh Festival, the Hong Kong Arts
Festival, the Melbourne Festival, as well as in Vancouver, Toronto,
Cincinnati and Montreal. Allen Moyer’s set and Anna Oliver’s costumes
reflect the strong emotions of the Roman occupation and domination of the
Celtic people. Lighting designer Thomas C. Hase joins the production team
having recently worked on the COC’s production of Rodelinda.
Single tickets for Norma went on sale February 13, 2006 and may be purchased by calling
416-872-2262, online at www.coc.ca, or in person at the Hummingbird Centre Box Office
(1 Front St. E., Toronto) or Ticketmaster Outlets. Ticket
prices for all performances range from $40 to $175. Special young people’s
tickets for all performances throughout the season are priced from $18 to
$88. These ticket prices apply to those who are 17 years of age or under,
accompanied by and sitting next to an adult. Starting March 25, 2006 at 10
a.m., $18 and $29 tickets are available for patrons between the ages of 18
and 29 through the 18to29: Opera for a New Age program presented by
TD Bank Financial Group.
Production Co-sponsors: National Bank Financial and Masonite
Presenting Sponsor of SURTITLESä : Sun Life Financial
The COC Ensemble Studio is Canada’s premier training program
for young opera professionals and provides advanced instruction, hands-on
experience, and career development opportunities. The Ensemble Studio is
generously supported by the Government of Canada through the Department of
Canadian Heritage, The John A. Cook Young Artist Development Fund, Harris
Steel Group, The Audrey S. Hellyer Charitable Foundation, The Hal Jackman
Foundation, Patricia Kramer, Jo Lander, The John McKellar Charitable
Foundation, Ruby Mercer Fund, George Cedric Metcalf Charitable Foundation,
Roger D. Moore Ensemble Studio Endowment Fund, RBC Financial Group, The
Stratton Trust, William and Phyllis Waters, and an anonymous donor.
BMO Financial Group Pre-Performance Opera Chats
The COC offers free 20-minute introductions to the opera and
its theme at the Hummingbird Centre, 45 minutes prior to each performance.
Appetite for Opera: Norma
Hilton Toronto’s award-winning restaurant Tundra celebrates the Canadian Opera Company’s production of Norma, with Appetite for Opera: Norma on Thursday, March 23, 2006 at
6:15 p.m. A joint venture of Hilton Toronto and the COC,
Appetite for Opera: Norma is an innovative evening combining cultural
and culinary arts. Guests will be the first to experience Tundra’s Norma-inspired
menu, a four-course culinary tour of Roman regional cuisine, each with a
wine pairing, created especially for the occasion by award-winning Executive
Chef John Cirillo. COC Speakers Bureau representative Robert Morassutti will
discuss the history and resonance of Bellini’s masterpiece while Chef
Cirillo and sommelier Ben Chiu will discuss each course and its wine
pairing. Appetite for Opera: Norma seatings are $70 per person.
Reservations can be made by calling 416-860-6800 or e-mailing email@example.com
and citing "Norma Dinner." Special guestroom rates are also
available; please inquiry when booking.
Canadian Opera Company Web sites
Send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
questions or comments about this web site.