Pella Chronicle

February 17, 2012

OPERA Iowa Educational Touring Troupe is coming to Pella


The Chronicle

Pella — OPERA Iowa Educational Touring Troupe, a program of Des Moines Metro Opera, Inc. will take to the road for its 2012 tour (including a stop in Pella). The group will perform Malcolm Fox’s Sid the Serpent Who Wanted to Sing, the first production OPERA Iowa performed in 1987. The group will also perform Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s immortal The Magic Flute during the ten-week tour.

OPERA Iowa will visit more than 65 schools and communities, giving 80 or more performances for approximately 20,000 school-aged children starting on January 27 and extending through April 13. The tour will be, for the third straight year, in residency at the State Historical Museum of Iowa from January 30 through February 4. The troupe will perform Sid the Serpent Who Wanted to Sing during its residency. For information about these performances, contact Jess Vogel at the State Historical Society of Iowa at (515) 281-4132 or jess.vogel@iowa.gov.

The school performances are presented in conjunction with interactive and engaging workshops that meet the National Standards for Arts in Education guidelines. The troupe will also give 10 evening concert performances for community audiences in various locations across the state. These performances are open to the public. A complete listing of OPERA Iowa’s performance schedule can be found at http://www.desmoinesmetroopera.org/opera_iowa#schedule.

The OPERA Iowa troupe will perform for students in public and private schools across Iowa. The communities the troupe will visit are Ames, Buffalo, Cascade, Clear Lake, Coralville, Davenport, Des Moines, Dubuque, Durant, Hills, Iowa City, Indianola, Knoxville, Lake Mills, Len, Marshalltown, Maquoketa, Montezuma, Mount Vernon, North Liberty, Orange City, Oskaloosa, Oxford, Pella, Perry, Sac City, Sioux City, and Spirit Lake. The tour will also visit Missouri schools in Kansas City and Park Hills.

For the 26th annual tour, OPERA Iowa welcomes the return of Sid the Serpent Who Wanted to Sing, which OPERA Iowa first presented in 1987 and revisited it in 1999 and 2000. This 45-minute opera, which features a serpent in the circus who is dissatisfied with his life of simply slithering in and out of his basket and wants to sing, Sid the Serpent who Wanted to Sing is OPERA Iowa’s most requested opera for children.

Mozart’s The Magic Flute, a delightful commentary on love, forgiveness, tolerance and the brotherhood of mankind, is one of the most beloved operas of all time. Filled with star-studded queens, dragons, bird-catchers, heroes and heroines and noble priests, The Magic Flute is a spectacular potpourri of worldly and heavenly delights all set with sublime enchantment to some of Mozart’s greatest music. The opera, which was last performed by OPERA Iowa in 2002, will be sung in English with piano accompaniment.

OPERA Iowa Educational Touring Troupe members are handpicked  from nationwide auditions of more than 800 singers to share their love of opera with audiences of all ages. The talented young performers of the 2012 OPERA Iowa troupe are: soprano Dana Pundt of Kilgore, TX; soprano Sara Ann Mitchell of Austin, TX; soprano Ashley Cutright of Dallas, TX; tenor Gabriel Gargari of Bothell, WA; baritone Alexander Elliott of Astoria, NY; and bass Aaron Ingersoll of Traverse City, MI. The music director is Stephen Karr of Aiken, SC; and the technical director is Jessica Rechin of Manheim, PA.

Date: Feb. 20, 2012, Sid the Serpent Who Wanted to Sing at 10 a.m.

Place: Pella's Jefferson Elementary

Contact Person: Lori Lorens

Contact E-mail: lori.lourens@pella.k12.ia.us