This month, Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival welcomes the return of opera to the BMO Mainstage at Sen?ákw/Vanier Park, in four special performances on September 12 and 13.
Western Canada’s largest not-for-profit, professional Shakespeare festival swaps A Midsummer Night’s Dream for the rising stars of the UBC Opera Ensemble and members of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, Bard on the Beach presents Opera & Arias: A Celebration. Featuring favourite arias and choruses from opera’s most iconic productions, Nancy Hermiston, BC Entertainment Hall of Fame inductee, directs this in-concert staging with Maestro Leslie Dala leading members of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra. All performances are hosted by Christopher Gaze, the Artistic Director of Bard on the Beach.
“I am thrilled to welcome the return of opera to our BMO Mainstage as we offer these enchanting performances,” said Christopher Gaze, Bard on the Beach Artistic Director. “We are delighted to continue our collaboration with the UBC Opera Ensemble and the Vancouver Opera Orchestra. The return of this Bard summer tradition will be a true celebration, with repertoire drawn from a range of much-loved classic works, including Carmen, La Traviata and Die Fledermaus. You’ll be humming those melodies as you leave the theatre!” Full programme repertoire here.
The UBC Opera Ensemble was created in 1995 by Professor Hermiston and draws from advanced students in the UBC School of Music. This year’s program, A Celebration! will feature both familiar and debut soloists, with a cast including: Leila Kirves, Catherine Thornsley (Metropolitan Opera 2022 Laffont Competition semi-finalist), Neil Craighead, Philip Wing, Mariana Iguavita, Emma Jang, Gabriel Chona Rueda, Wanshuai Yu, Alexandra Baird, Alessandra Ianni, Jason Somerville, Liam Robertson, Denis Petrov, Pablo Romero Moreira, Kevin Liu, Ming-Xuan Chung, Magdalena How, Rachel Buttress, Ian McCloy, Holly Duerichen, Alyssa Nicole Samson, Emma Petersen Melland, Kevin Sohn, Xiang Li, Mara Ayque, Kathleen Isaza, Katie Fraser, Zachary Martin, Yuhui Wang, Sarah Anderson-Caulfield, Kenda McDermott, Hannah Ernst, Christina Demeo, Carly King, Zach Martin, Melanie Hiepler, Olivia Rapos, Jing Jang, Caelan Prescott, Claire Bidulka, Kendra Baldwin, Skye Wilkinson, Adriana Zaharijevic, Rebekah Leon, Saba Taghiakbari, Zhilun Liu, Hans Grunwald, Matthew Gorlitz and Rafael Laurindo.
Tickets for Opera & Arias start at $27 (including fees & taxes), and can be found online at bardonthebeach.org or by calling the Bard Box Office at 604-739-0559, daily from 12 noon through 6pm.