Annapolis Opera to perform 'Figaro' Opera: The performances of Mozart's masterful composition tomorrow and Sunday will feature a talented vocal ensemble.

October 08, 1998|By Phil Greenfield | Phil Greenfield,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

"I like an aria to fit a singer as perfectly as a well-tailored suit of clothes," Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote in 1778.

By the time he ascended the podium at Vienna's Burgtheater eight years later to conduct the premiere of his new opera "Le Nozze di Figaro," Mozart had designed a full line of musical apparel that still has the world buzzing over the sumptuousness of its workmanship.

Indeed, "The Marriage of Figaro," which will be performed by the Annapolis Opera at 8 p.m. tomorrow and 3 p.m. Sunday at Maryland Hall, represents a great composer at the apex of his craft.

Garbed in Mozart's melodic finery, Figaro, Susanna, Cherubino and the Count and Countess Almaviva are as enduringly real as any characters that have trodden an opera stage. "Le Nozze" is effervescent good fun. But when the countess spins out her ineffably sad tale of loneliness in the exquisite aria "Porgi, amor," or when Figaro hurls down the gauntlet of class warfare at the feet of his treacherous employer in "Se vuol ballare," laughter gives way to the weighty emotions that churn in all of us.

Mozart once said, "Opera to me comes before everything else." When you come face-to-face with the genius of "Figaro," that priority doesn't surprise you.

Annapolis Opera has engaged a talented ensemble of singers to bring Mozart's masterpiece to life.

Baltimore native Thomas Zielinski will sing the title role. A veteran of several previous Annapolis Opera engagements, Zielinski's strong baritone voice was heard to great effect last month in the role of El Gallo in Second Star's production of "The Fantasticks" at the Bowie Playhouse.

Jeffrey Buchman, a young Baltimore baritone who has won the Luciano Pavarotti International Vocal Competition in Philadelphia, will sing the role of the lecherous Count Almaviva, whose flirtatious excesses spur his social underlings into action.

Soprano Laura Lewis, who sang so beautifully as Micaela in last year's Annapolis Opera production of "Carmen," will sing the role of Susanna, Figaro's feisty bride-to-be, while Juilliard graduate Meagan Miller will be the countess, a role she performed with the Wolf Trap Opera Company last year.

Mezzo-soprano Grace Gori will sing Cherubino, the lovesick page boy so hilariously packed off to serve in the count's regiments at the end of the first act.

Ronald Gretz will conduct the opera, which will be performed in English.

Information: 410-267-8135.

Pub Date: 10/08/98

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