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2011 Press Releases

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Sarasota Opera announces 2011-2012 productions

Vixens and Victims at the center of five-opera season

March 6, 2011

Patricia G. Horwell, Communications Officer
(941) 328-1334

Vixens and Victims, what would opera be without them? Cio-Cio San (Madama Butterfly), Carmen, Lucia, Desdemona (Otello), and Vanessa — they’re all part of the lineup for the 2011-2012 season at Sarasota Opera, a season packed with beautiful music, excitement, lust, desire, love, and tragedy.
The season will begin in the fall with Puccini’s classic tale of tragic love, Madama Butterfly, on October 28. A favorite of Sarasota audiences, it was last performed here in 2007. The Winter Festival returns for its 53rd year, with four works including two Sarasota Opera premieres. The 2012 festival will begin with Bizet’s lusty Carmen. Donizetti’s tragic Lucia di Lammermoor will be the second work of the season. The company’s acclaimed Verdi Cycle will continue with Otello. Finally, Sarasota Opera will present the second offering of its new American Classics initiative with a production of Samuel Barber’s Vanessa. The Winter Opera Festival will conclude March 25 with a special gala concert celebrating Victor DeRenzi’s thirtieth anniversary at Sarasota Opera.
American Classics:  Vanessa
This is the second year of Sarasota Opera’s departure from its traditional repertoire ranging from Mozart to Puccini to Verdi. With the company’s Verdi Cycle coming to a close in 2016, the American Classics series was begun in 2011. “Looking forward, we think this is a good time to for us to move ahead in other directions,” Maestro Derenzi said. Adding that “We remain committed to finishing the cycle and having Verdi’s works remain a part of our repertoire.”
Composed by Samuel Barber in 1956-57, Vanessa was first performed at the Metropolitan Opera on January 15, 1958. The premiere was lauded by the New York Times and Barber was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for his work. This will be the first time Sarasota Opera has performed Vanessa, which opens March 10 and will have six performances through March 24.
Maestro DeRenzi’s 30th Anniversary Concert
To celebrate the thirty-year anniversary of Maestro DeRenzi, this gala concert will take a look back and a look forward as Maestro conducts his favorite selections.
Opera Lovers Weekends
Sarasota Opera’s famous Opera Lovers Weekends, which are popular with tourists and allow audience members to see all the Winter Festival selections in three days, continue with three full weekends of opera in repertory. The final Opera Lovers Weekend will include the Gala Concert celebrating Maestro DeRenzi’s 30th anniversary with Sarasota Opera. Opera Lovers Weekends for 2012 will be March 9-11, 16-18, and 23-25.
Subscriptions will go on sale March 8 by calling (941) 328-1300 or visiting the Sarasota Opera Box Office. Single tickets will go on sale August 1 online ( and September 1 at the Box Office.
2011 Fall Opera Season
Madama Butterfly
Opera in three acts by Giacomo Puccini.  Libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giocosa.
Sung in Italian with English supertitles
Performances (6): October 28, 30m, November 2, 5m, 9m, 15
Evening performances at 8 p.m., matinees at 1:30 p.m.
Opera in four acts by Georges Bizet.  Libretto by Henri Meilhac and Ludovic Halévy.
Sung in French with English supertitles
Performances (11): February 11, 14, 19m, 22, 24, March 4m, 8, 11, 16, 20m, 24
Evening performances at 7:30 p.m.(except for opening night on February 11)
Opening Night February 11 at 4 p.m.
Matinees at 1:30 p.m.
Lucia di Lammermoor
Opera in three acts by Gaetano Donizetti.  Libretto by Salvadore Cammarano.
Sung in Italian with English supertitles
Performances (9): February 18, 21, 23, 26m, March 2, 7, 9m, 17m, 23
Evening performances at 8 p.m., matinees at 1:30 p.m.
Opera in four acts by Giuseppe Verdi.  Libretto by Arrigo Boito.
Sung in Italian with English supertitles
Verdi Cycle
Sarasota Opera Premiere
Performances (7): March 3, 6, 11m, 14, 17, 22, 25m
Evening performances at 8 p.m., matinees at 1:30 p.m.
Opera in three acts by Samuel Barber.  Libretto by Gian Carlo Menotti.
Sung in English with English supertitles
American Classics
Sarasota Opera Premiere
Performances (6): March 10, 13, 15, 18m, 21, 24m
Evening performances at 8 p.m., matinees at 1:30 p.m.
Maestro DeRenzi’s Thirtieth Anniversary Concert
March 25 at 7 p.m.