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2011 Press Releases

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January 3, 2012

Samuel Lowry

(941) 328-1322 (direct line)

(347) 268-2513 (cell phone)


Sarasota Youth Opera Now Enrolling for

2012 Winter Season

Sarasota, FL – Celebrating its 28th year, the Sarasota Youth Opera program, the most comprehensive program of its kind in the United States, will re-open enrollment for the 2012 Winter Season for new singers ages 8 – 18.  Prospective member have the choice of attending one of two enrollment nights on Thursday, January 5th, 5:30pm – 7:00pm or Tuesday, January 10th, also from 5:30pm – 7:30pm both at the Sarasota Opera House.  Enrollment sessions are a great way for families to learn about all the exciting opportunities the Sarasota Youth Opera program has to offer as well as meet Maestro Victor DeRenzi and the Youth Opera artistic and administrative team. 

Winter/Spring Season
During the Winter Season, the Sarasota Youth Opera will perform outreach concerts throughout the community as well as participate in special performances with the Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artists on March 10, 2012 and Maestro DeRenzi’s 30th Season Gala on March 25, 2012.  In addition, Youth Opera members will be eligible to audition for the children’s chorus in Sarasota Opera’s Winter Festival productions of Georges Bizet’s Carmen and Giuseppe Verdi’s Otello.  This season promises to be particularly exciting as Sarasota Opera has welcomed the new Youth Opera and Outreach Coordinator, Ben Plocher, and the new Youth Opera Music Director, Jesse Martins, in addition to beginning preparations for Sarasota Youth Opera’s latest commission, Little Nemo in Slumberland, which will have its world premiere in the fall of 2012.

Enrollment Night
Enrollment Night is a fun opportunity for kids and families to meet the music director and program coordinator one-on-one, take a tour of the Opera House, and learn music in a mini-rehearsal (singers do not have to prepare a song for this exercise) to help determine placement between the Youth Opera Chorus and the Preparatory Choir.  There will also be a parents meeting to go over specifics of the program, payment schedules, and other information.

Sarasota Youth Opera accepts all levels of talent and provides vocal and acting training. Tuition is $150 per session and scholarships are available based on financial need.  Tuition can be paid via check, credit card or the administration can work with you to create a payment plan. The Winter/Spring session will begin in early January and end in mid May.
To sign up for either of the enrollment night, call (941) 366-8450, ext. 249.

Based in Florida’s beautiful Gulf Coast, Sarasota Opera is approaching its 53rd consecutive season.  In 1960, the company began presenting chamber-sized repertoire in the historic 320-seat Asolo Theater on the grounds of Sarasota’s Ringling Museum of Art. Recognizing the need for a theater more conducive to opera, the company purchased the former A.B. Edwards Theater in downtown Sarasota in 1979 and first performing in it in 1984 as the Sarasota Opera House. The theater underwent a $20-million renovation in 2008 and rehabilitation enhancing audience amenities, while updating the technical facilities including increasing the size of the orchestra pit. The theater, which reopened in March 2008, has been called “one of America’s finest venues for opera” by Musical America.

Since 1983 the company has been under the artistic leadership of Victor DeRenzi. Since then the company has garnered international attention with its Masterwork Revivals Series, which presents neglected works of artistic merit, as well as the Verdi Cycle producing the complete works of Giuseppe Verdi. Recognizing the importance of training, Maestro DeRenzi founded the Apprentice Artist and Studio Artist programs. Sarasota Opera also maintains a commitment to education through its Invitation to Opera performances for local schools and the unique Sarasota Youth Opera program.

The 2011 Fall Season featured Puccini’s Madama Butterfly in the fall.  The 2012 Winter Festival will include Bizet’s Carmen (opéra-comique version with spoken dialogue), Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, Verdi’s Otello, and Barber’s Vanessa. Subscriptions are on sale by calling (941) 328-1300 or visiting the Sarasota Opera Box Office. Single tickets went on sale August 1st online ( and September 1st in the Box Office.

Sarasota Opera is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Arts Council, and the National Endowment for the Arts. Programs are supported in part by an award the Tourist Development Tax through the Board of County Commissioners, the Tourist Development Council and the Sarasota County Arts Council. Additional funding is provided by the City of Sarasota and the County of Sarasota.

Sarasota Opera 61 N. Pineapple Avenue Sarasota, FL 34236 (941) 366-8450