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NEWS
November 23, 2012
On Sunday afternoon I had the pleasure of attending a performance of Mozart's Masterpiece Don Giovanni performed by The Peabody Opera Theatre at the Modell Performing Arts Center. It was a thrill to hear the exquisite voices render Mozart's arias. This was quite a different audience than the usual Baltimore opera aficionados. It was a younger crowd, probably family and friends of many of the performers. As an octogenarian who has been an opera fan, I found it refreshing to see our local institution put on such a professional and musically proficient performance attended by a whole different demographic.
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ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith and The Baltimore Sun | September 27, 2014
That an opera inspired by Shakespeare's "Hamlet" should have suffered a tragic fate has a certain irony. Whether Franco Faccio's "Amleto" deserved it is another matter. This week, Baltimore Concert Opera will make a fresh case for the piece, which has gone unheard since 1871. "I think the music is gorgeous, sweeping and melodic," says Anthony Barrese, the Chicago-based conductor who unearthed "Amleto" and will lead the performance. "But, at this point, I have no objectivity at all. " Barrese has spent more than a decade trying to put Faccio's forgotten work back in the spotlight.
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NEWS
By Ernest F. Imhoff and Ernest F. Imhoff,Evening Sun Staff | December 28, 1990
The Baltimore Opera Company says it has received a gift of $100,000 from the family of the late Charles S. Garland Jr., former opera board chairman, and now expects to reach its $1 million goal to avoid bankruptcy.The gift resulted from an emergency campaign started by the faltering company in October to eliminate a current operating deficit of $840,944, which has accumulated in recent seasons. The company is expected to be able to mount as planned Verdi's "A Masked Ball" in March and Puccini's "Madama Butterfly" in April.
NEWS
By Jacques Kelly, The Baltimore Sun | January 25, 2014
John Weber, a tenor who sang in opera productions and was the music director of a Rodgers Forge church, died of an apparent heart attack Jan. 17. The Catonsville resident was 50. His brother, Thomas Proveaux, said Mr. Weber collapsed at the wheel of his car while driving on West Forest Park Avenue. He was taken to Sinai Hospital, where his death was confirmed. Born in Baltimore, he was the son of John Borst Weber, a Baltimore County police officer, and Eileen O'Sullivan Weber, a Western Electric worker and homemaker.
NEWS
October 18, 1990
Baltimore Opera Company officials said yesterday that they must raise $600,000 in cash and pledges by December or face bankruptcy before the end of this 40th anniversary season.Founded by renowned diva Rosa Ponselle, the company is operating with an $800,000 deficit, half of which was incurred last season.The opera has received $400,000 in cash and pledges in the last several months, but much of that money is contingent on raising an additional $600,000 to meet a $1 million goal by the end of the year.
NEWS
May 20, 2004
Letitia S. Bernhardt, a former soloist and founder of the Baltimore Opera Company, died of heart failure May 13 at the Homewood Retirement Center in Williamsport. The former University Parkway resident was 95. She was born and raised Letitia Shenk in Hagerstown. After graduating from Hagerstown High School in 1927, she studied voice at the Peabody Conservatory. A soprano, Mrs. Bernhardt was a soloist and served as musical director for several Baltimore churches for many years. In 1939, she married Elmer F. Bernhardt, who had been head of the city's Central Payroll Bureau and a founder of the Classified Municipal Employees Association.
NEWS
By Tim Smith and Tim Smith,tim.smith@baltsun.com | December 9, 2008
After 58 years and more than 200 productions, the Baltimore Opera Company will file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy-law protection today amid dwindling ticket sales and contributions. The remaining two productions of the 2008-2009 season, Rossini's The Barber of Seville and Gershwin's Porgy and Bess have been canceled. Ticket-holders will not receive refunds. Singers engaged for next season are being released from their contracts, but the company plans to continue fundraising in an effort to resume productions in the future.
FEATURES
By Jonathan Palevsky and Jonathan Palevsky,SPECIAL TO THE SUN | November 14, 1995
The ingredients needed for successful operetta are as follows: A mythical European country, in this case Pontevedro; a plot that will not strain the mind too much; and lots of great melodies. Franz Lehar's "The Merry Widow" has these qualities in abundance, and it's no surprise that it is the most performed operetta in the world.The opera, which made Lehar a millionaire many times over, is still being recorded and performed all over the world, currently by the Baltimore Opera.German 19th-century opera was so full of experimentation that works like "The Merry Widow" offered audiences a welcome breath of fresh air. The year of "The Merry Widow's" premiere, 1905, also saw the birth of Richard Strauss' "Salome."
FEATURES
By Stephen Wigler and Stephen Wigler,Music Critic | March 10, 1992
The 1992-'93 Baltimore Opera Company season will be characterized by two blockbuster operas that play bookends to a lyric and sentimental one.The season, announced yesterday by the BOC, will open in October with Puccini's "Turandot," continue in March with Donizetti's "The Elixir of Love," and conclude in April with the first Baltimore performances of Verdi's "Nabucco," perhaps the first piece in which the composer unequivocally announced his greatness....
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | September 30, 2013
A lot has happened, operatically, in Baltimore during the past few years. The city lost its proud Baltimore Opera Company after more than five decades, then gained a sort of second cousin in the form of Lyric Opera Baltimore. Opera Vivente folded its tent after more than a dozen years. Baltimore Opera Theatre came and went in what seemed like a flash. Amid these and other changes, Baltimore Concert Opera , founded by former Baltimore Opera singers, has managed to hang on and maintain a steady course.
NEWS
By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun | April 16, 2013
Mavis S. "Sherry" Sheedy, a retired Baltimore public schools art teacher and longtime museum docent, died April 4 of congestive heart failure at Carroll Hospital Center in Westminster. The Reisterstown resident was 74. The daughter of a civil engineer and a registered nurse, Mavis Sherron Grantham was born and raised in Whitney, Texas, where she graduated in 1956 from Whitney High School. She earned a bachelor's degree in 1960 in Spanish from Baylor University in Waco, Texas, and later earned a master's degree in art education from Towson University.
ENTERTAINMENT
March 26, 2013
John Marra's full-time job is an assistant community lot projects coordinator at Civic Works. But his second job, although he works for free, is quartermaster of puppets for the Baltimore Rock Opera Society. "We get paid in glory," said Marra, 28, who is originally from Queens, N.Y., but now lives in Harwood. The Baltimore Rock Opera Society began in 2007. It is a completely volunteer organization "on a mission to melt faces and blow minds with the power of rock theater for next 7,000 years," Marra said.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | March 20, 2013
Just a few words on last weekend's musical jaunts, in case you were desperate for my report, however belated. It was good to see Peabody Opera Theatre exploring the outer banks of the repertoire -- Delibes' once-popular "Lakme. " The work turned up locally about a decade ago in a musically solid, amateurish-looking production from the old Baltimore Opera Company. It's a colorful and charming opera (charming if you don't count a stabbing and a suicide). The plot, set in India, offers something of a foretaste of "Madama Butterfly," with a cultural clash involving a foreign military officer and the daughter of a Brahmin priest.
ENTERTAINMENT
By Tim Smith, The Baltimore Sun | March 6, 2013
Just for the record, however belated, my musical adventures last Sunday started out at the Garrett-Jacobs Mansion to hear the latest Baltimore Concert Opera presentation. It was enough to restore my faith in the spunky company. Too many past performances contained what sounded more like sight-reading than thorough immersion in the score and identification with the characters. Not so this time. For Verdi's "Macbeth," the company assembled a cast that was impressively prepared and, for the most part, vocally equipped for the challenge.
NEWS
November 23, 2012
On Sunday afternoon I had the pleasure of attending a performance of Mozart's Masterpiece Don Giovanni performed by The Peabody Opera Theatre at the Modell Performing Arts Center. It was a thrill to hear the exquisite voices render Mozart's arias. This was quite a different audience than the usual Baltimore opera aficionados. It was a younger crowd, probably family and friends of many of the performers. As an octogenarian who has been an opera fan, I found it refreshing to see our local institution put on such a professional and musically proficient performance attended by a whole different demographic.
MOBILE
May 9, 2012
View the photo gallery for all of this week's picks
NEWS
By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun | May 9, 2012
Betty G. Hocker, a retired Baltimore opera singer and composer who wrote the "Fort McHenry March" at the time of the nation's bicentennial, died Saturday of complications from dementia at Stella Maris Hospice. The longtime Roland Park resident was 101. The daughter of a businessman and a homemaker, Sara Elizabeth "Betty" Gumpper was born into a musical family in Butler, Pa. Her father played the banjo and piano and had a small band, while her mother also played the piano and sang.
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