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Musical Trifecta

Folly Theater (driving directions)
300 W 12th St
Kansas City, MO 64105

Saturday, April 28th, 2012 – 7:30pm
Pre-concert talk: 6:45 p.m with
Christopher Kelts, conductor
Admission: FREE !

Come and enjoy our 2011/12 season finale!  Conductor Christopher Kelts kicks off the program at 6:45pm with his discussion of the composers and their work which is sure to be both humorous and informative.  Both the talk and the concert are free and open to the public.  No tickets required — just come and enjoy!

  • Berlioz, Roman Carnival Overture
  • Botessini: Concerto for Bass & Orchestra – Jeffrey Kail, bass
  • Tchaikovsky, Symphony No. 4 in F minor, Op. 36

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Kate Hamilton & Sarah Gentry, soloists

Heroic Finale

Kate Hamilton & Sarah Gentry, soloists

Classic Series IV
Saturday, April 17, 2010
7:30 p.m., pre-concert talk at 6:45 p.m.

The Folly Theater
300 W. 12th St

  • Bruch’s Concerto for violin & viola, Op. 88 E minor
  • Beethoven’s: Symphony No. 3, Op. 55 Eflat major “Eroica”
  • Sarah Gentry & Kate Hamilton, guest soloists

Cost: FREE, no tickets required.

Financial assistance for this project has been provided by the Missouri Arts Council, a state agency.

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Uthe stands out in fine rendition of Puccini’s ‘Edgar’

Posted Thursday, August 18, 2005
by Timothy McDonald, Arts Writer
The Johnson County Sun

The Civic Opera Theater of Kansas City and the Kansas City Civic Orchestra presented a fine production of the rarely performed opera “Edgar” by Italian composer Giacomo Puccini at the Folly Theater last weekend.

“Edgar” was Puccini’s second opera, written for Milan’s Teatro alla Scala in 1889. While it does not approach the name recognition of the composer’s more mature works (“Madama Butterfly,” “La Bohème” and “Tosca), “Edgar” contains its fair share of voluptuous melodies.

The semi-staged production featured an onstage orchestra partially hidden from view by sets, a small chorus veiled in monks’ robes, and five principal singers. The placement of the orchestra resulted in a better balance between voices and instruments than has been the case in previous productions employing the Folly pit.

The opera was cast well, particularly with regard to the women’s roles. Megan King portrayed the pure-hearted shepherdess Fidelia, and sang splendidly with her lovely, light soprano voice.

Stacey Stofferahn Uthe was the standout singer in the role of the lusty and wild Tigrane. The darker coloring made a fine contrast with King’s, and her rapid passages were nicely delivered. In her opening piece, though, the low range did not project well.

Bruce Burstert as Frank and Robert Grady in the title role of Edgar generally sang well and with expression. Grady sang with a tight upper range that was not always attractive in Act I, but improved markedly in later acts.

Opera librettos can be convoluted, but that of “Edgar” was downright silly at times, with plot twists and references that make you want to jump up and say “huh?” The music was wonderful, though, and included a welcome number of marvelous orchestral interludes, played with passion by the Civic Orchestra under the direction of Andy Anderson.

The Civic Opera and Orchestra are to be commended for taking a chance on a little known work by a major composer and turning into a wonderful evening of summer opera.

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An operatic portrait of Puccini…

MUSIC AND DANCE NOTES
An operatic portrait of Puccini…
Posted Sunday, Aug. 07, 2005

By PAUL HORSLEY
The Kansas City Star

Even those with a casual acquaintance with opera have probably seen or heard something from Puccini’s “Tosca,” “Madama Butterfly” or “La Boheme.”

But you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone, even opera fans, who have seen the composer’s “Edgar” on the stage.

This week Kansas Citians will have a chance to see Puccini’s first completed opera, a youthful morsel with flashes of the greatness that would bloom in later verismo masterpieces.

At 8 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Aug. 14 at the Folly Theater, the Civic Opera Theater of Kansas City opens its 21st season with “Edgar.” Andy Anderson is conductor and stage director of this semi-staged production.

“It’s a love triangle. Actually it’s a love square,” Anderson said of the story. “Boy and girl are in love, but boy (Edgar) has loved another girl before that. And the girl has loved others, too.

Several others. It happens that the boy’s best friend, Frank, is in love with the girl he loved earlier.”

And on it goes. “It’s very Carmenesque,” Anderson said.

The musical language, he added, is that of the Wagner and Verdi that the young Puccini was hearing at the time.

“In a lot of ways, it’s the Puccini that we’ve come to know, with a twist.” The female lead sings in a florid bel canto style, he said, while the other characters are more in keeping with the later Puccini.

“The orchestra is thick and lush, like all his other operas,” Anderson said. This “Edgar” marks the inaugural collaboration between the Civic Opera Theater and the Civic Orchestra of Kansas City, which Anderson also directs.

The cast includes Robert Grady in the title role, Bruce Burstert as Frank, Megan King as Fidelia, Stacey Uthe-Stofferahn as Tigrana and Phil Etherton as Gualtiero, the father.

Tickets cost $18 ($15 for students and seniors, $10 for persons in groups of six or more). Call (816) 235-6222.

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