Wednesday, November 21, 2012
Westminster Opera Theater will present Benjamin Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream on Friday, November 30, and Saturday, December 1, at 8 p.m. in the Princeton Regional Schools Performing Arts Center at Princeton High School. The fully staged production, sung in English, will include the Westminster Festival Orchestra.
Britten’s score is set to a libretto adapted by the composer and Peter Pears from William Shakespeare's much-loved comedy. It captures perfectly the ethos of an enchanted forest where magical things can and do happen.
All of the singers will be Westminster Choir College students. Kara-Lynn Vaeni is the stage director, and William Hobbs is the music director. Westminster Opera Theater’s productions have been praised for their innovative approach to a wide range of repertoire. Graduates of the program have gone on to perform in opera houses around the world. Recent seasons have included La Clemenza di Tito, The Dialogues of the Carmelites, Albert Herring and Il Re Pastore.
Over the past six months Kara-Lynn Vaeni has directed the premiere of a two-story theatrical installation/event, AliceGraceAnon, which she developed with playwright Kara Lee Corthron; the premiere of the new musical Vanishing Point, by Rob Hartman at American Stage; the workshop of a new play, Dead Bodies, by M.J. Kaufman at Huntington Stage; and Leos Janacek’s opera Jenufa for Opera Slavica. This spring she will be an artist-in-residence at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, where she will direct the United States premiere of Suitors, a new translation/adaptation of two rediscovered 17th-century Spanish playwrights, Ana Caro and Feliciana Enriquez. She is also a resident director for the Graduate Musical Theater Writing Program at NYU and literary manager of New Georges. an Obie-winning nonprofit theater company in New York that produces feisty, imaginative, highly theatrical new plays by women.
A member of Westminster’s faculty, William Hobbs also works as repetiteur and conductor at many of the world’s major opera houses including the Opéra National de Paris, the Salzburg Festival, San Francisco Opera, Chicago Lyric Opera, Seattle Opera, Washington Opera and the Opéra de Monte-Carlo. He has served on the faculty of the Aspen Opera Theater Center of the Aspen Music Festival and the CoOPERAtive Program at Westminster Choir College, and he is on the coaching staff of the Juilliard School of Music. He also served twice as repetiteur and conductor for the National Theater of Tokyo. Mr. Hobbs is the founder and artistic director of Opera Slavica, which made its debut concert at Merkin Concert Hall in New York in 2009. Opera Slavica is devoted to presenting forgotten masterworks from Russian, Czech and Polish composers and to providing singers with no background in these languages the knowledge and training to sing, read and translate them.
Admission to this performance is $25 for adults and $20 for students and seniors. For tickets call 609-921-2663 or order online.