Opera Naples Announces Ambitious New Opera Season

November 16, 2020  Performance News

La TraviataGlory Denied, and West Side Story in Concert are Highlights

Opera Naples has announced plans for an ambitious new season, with productions of Tom Cipullo’s Glory Denied, Verdi’s La Traviata, and a concert production of Bernstein’s masterwork, West Side Story. “We are thrilled to bring these three outstanding operas to the Naples community and to highlight two works of the American lyric stage,” says Opera Naples Executive Director, Sondra Quinn.

Since its 2007 premiere, Tom Cipullo’s Glory Denied has been widely produced. Based on Tom Philpott’s book, the opera chronicles the true story of Col. Jim Thompson, the longest held American prisoner of war from the Vietnam era and his gut-wrenching re-introduction to an America that had moved on without him.

An enormous critical success, “[the opera] gives magnificent expression to the tragic story…the piece is continuously absorbing and musically rewarding,” said Opera News.
Indeed, with well over 20 productions to date, Glory Denied has become one of the the most widely produced new operas in recent memory. Ramón Tebar will conduct the chamber piece which will be sung by Opera Naples’ resident artists.
Glory Denied is scheduled for March 5 and 6 at the Wang Opera Center. “We’re proud to present this important work from an era that is seared into the American experience,” said Opera Naples Board Chair, Wendy Needham.

Next is a production of Verdi’s magnificent La Traviata on April 28 and 29 in a lavish production at Artis—Naples. The timeless story of a sophisticated Paris courtesan who sacrifices everything for love, La Traviata is one of the most popular operas ever produced and has been a vehicle for the world’s most glamourous leading ladies. Based on Dumas’ novel La Dame aux Camélias, the role of Violetta has been made legendary by actresses and singing actresses including Sara Bernhard, Greta Garbo, Maria Callas and, more recently, Reneé Fleming.
“Violetta captures our imagination in a way that few opera heroines have,” notes Opera Naples Artistic Director, Ramón Tebar. “The drama, and Verdi’s dazzling score center on this tragic heroine. Our Traviata promises us a memorable night in the theatre.” The fully-staged production will feature the Naples Philharmonic Orchestra and the Opera Naples Chorus with Maestro Tebar conducting.

West Side Story is in a genre of its own as a musical and theatrical experience. The demands of the piece—demanding vocals and rich orchestrations—have moved it into the operatic repertory in recent years. Leonard Bernstein worked with a very young lyricist, Stephen Sondheim to create this seminal piece of work for the American musical stage. The re-telling of Romeo and Juliette has become a cornerstone of American culture.  The end of the opera season will be a concert version of this masterwork—with full orchestra and chorus—at Artis—Naples on May 14, 2021. Maestro Tebar will conduct. “We know that Bernstein “heard” West Side Story operatically because of the landmark 1984 recording he conducted a cast of opera luminaries with Kiri Te Kanawa and José Carreras as Maria and Tony.” remarked Maestro Tebar.

This upcoming season will also feature a new outdoor Concert Under the Stars on March 13, 2021.

Following their season announcement, Opera Naples will announce their Beaux Arts, Naples’ Best Jazz and Blue Series, and their annual Gala.

Tickets for all events will be on sale for Opera Naples Millennium Club members on June 8 and will go on sale to the general public on June 22. Join the Millennium Club at Opera Naples with an annual donation of $1,000 for individuals or $1,500 per couple and enjoy numerous benefits including priority seating at all Opera Naples events and exclusive events and invitations throughout the season. Call Rita Albaugh at (239) 963-9050 or email at  RAlbaugh@operanaples.org for complete information and membership. Ticket pricing and subscription information are available at (239) 963-9050 or online at www.OperaNaples.org

About Opera Naples

Located in the heart of Naples in Southwest Florida’s Collier County, Opera Naples is dedicated to presenting opera productions and concerts of the highest quality. An artistic powerhouse in an area known for its pristine beaches, world-class dining, shopping, and art galleries, Opera Naples is a cultural gem in Southwest Florida.

Opera Naples presents internationally renowned performers and directors, while nurturing the region’s promising young talent. Each season, Opera Naples produces classic grand operas at Artis—Naples, as well as chamber opera and concerts at the David and Cecile Wang Opera Center. A staunch proponent of community service and education outreach, the company has introduced opera to over 60,000 local area children since its inception and offers various programs, including Lee and Collier county in-school programs and performances, the Resident Artists Program and Summer Youth Program. Opera Naples Academy, now in its fourth season, with a faculty of revered opera luminaries, offers an immersive program of vocal instruction, lectures and masterclasses to exceptional singers from all over the world.

Over the past decade, the company has earned local, regional, and state government support. Opera Naples is grateful to its sponsors, patrons, and many supporters who have helped it become an important part of the cultural fabric of the region. Opera Naples is located at the Wang Opera Center, 2408 Linwood Ave, Naples, Florida, 34112 USA. For more information, visit OperaNaples.org, call (239) 963-9050 or email info@OperaNaples.org.