Black tenors fight prejudice in quest for opera's leading roles

March 28, 2006|By TIM SMITH | TIM SMITH,SUN MUSIC CRITIC

Operagoers see just about anything on stage these days: every imaginable (or unimaginable) costume, deftly crafted set designs that may or may not relate to the plot, nifty lighting tricks, video projections, the inevitable wave of dry-ice fog, occasional livestock.

But one sight remains exceedingly rare: a black tenor in a leading role from the standard repertoire.

Coming up

Three Mo' Tenors: 7 p.m. today at James Weldon Johnson Auditorium, Coppin State University, 2500 W. North Ave. Tickets are $45 and $75. Call 410-951-3847 or visit ticketmaster.com.

Opera Vivente: Verdi's Rigoletto. 8 p.m. Friday and April 6, 8; 2 p.m. April 2 at Emmanuel Episcopal Church, 811 Cathedral St. Tickets are $22-$42. Call 410-547-7997.

Washington Concert Opera: Rossini's Tancredi. 6 p.m. Sunday at Lisner Auditorium, 21st and H streets N.W., Washington. Tickets $20-$75. Call 202-364-5826 or visit concertopera.org.

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