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VIRGINIA OPERA PRESENTS WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART'S "THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO" AT GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY'S CENTER FOR THE ARTS ON FRIDAY, APRIL 19, 2013 AT 8 PM AND SUNDAY, APRIL 21, 2013 AT 2PM
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GEORGE MASON UNIVERSITY’S CENTER FOR THE ARTS
WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART’S “THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO”
Friday, April 19, 2013 at 8 p.m.
Sunday, April 21, 2013 at 2 p.m.
FAIRFAX, Va., March 18, 2013 – Virginia Opera, the Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia, brings Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s comic masterpiece “The Marriage of Figaro” to George Mason University’s Center for the Arts in Fairfax on Friday, April 19, 2013 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, April 21, 2013 at 2 p.m. The fourth and final installment of Virginia Opera’s 2012-2013 season, this four-act opera buffa finds the beloved characters from Rossini’s “The Barber of Seville” in madcap mayhem once again in this hysterical story about a single day of lunacy. Virginia Opera’s delightful production features real-life husband and wife Matthew Burns and Anne-Carolyn Bird in the leading roles of betrothed lovebirds Figaro and Susanna. A pre-performance discussion, free to ticket holders, begins 45 minutes prior to each performance on the Center’s Grand Tier III and is sponsored by the Friends of the Center for the Arts.
This celebrated tale of love, revenge and forgiveness originated as the second installment of the trilogy of Figaro-based plays by Pierre Beaumarchais; the first was Rossini’s “The Barber of Seville.” “The Marriage of Figaro” was the first collaboration between Mozart and librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte, whose later collaborations included “Don Giovanni” and “Così fan tutte.”
In this uproarious tale, the clever Figaro, now major-domo for the lecherous Count Almaviva, is preparing to marry his beautiful fiancée, Susanna, Countess Almaviva’s maid. But to do so, he must outwit both his employer and his old nemesis, Doctor Bartolo, and avoid the advances of the Countess’ former governess. This hilarious work is among the most cherished gems in the operatic canon and has enchanted audiences for centuries since its premiere in Vienna in 1786.
“‘The Marriage of Figaro’ shows an optimism, a faith in the human heart and its power to regenerate itself and create a better life, if we make up our minds to change,” says director Lillian Groag. “A view of a world without greed, selfishness, mendacity, cruelty and ultimately … war.”
This production marks the company debut of Steven Smith, the music director of the Richmond Symphony, Santa Fe Symphony and Chorus and Cleveland Chamber Symphony. Smith has previously served as assistant conductor of the Cleveland Orchestra. An award-winning composer, he was named Ohio Composer of the Year in 2008.
Virginia native Matthew Burns (“Orphée,” 2012) returns to Virginia Opera as the mischievous Figaro, while his bride-to-be, Susanna, is played by real-life wife Anne-Carolyn Bird in her company debut. Aaron St. Clair Nicholson (“The Mikado,” 2012) and Katherine Whyte appear as the adulterous Count and scheming Countess Almaviva. The cast also includes appearances by Karin Mushegain (“Hansel and Gretel,” 2011), Jeffrey Tucker (“The Mikado,” 2012) and Margaret Gawrysiak (“Hansel and Gretel,” 2011; “A Streetcar Named Desire,” 2013). The Virginia Opera Orchestra is provided by the Richmond Symphony.
“The Marriage of Figaro” will be sung in Italian with English supertitles. Images will be available online at www.vaopera.org/news-media in the coming weeks. Virginia Opera may also be found on the web at www.vaopera.org, on Twitter at @vaopera and on Facebook at Facebook.com/VaOpera.
Tickets for VIRGINIA OPERA’S production of “THE MARRIAGE OF FIGARO” are Friday: $44, $72 and $86 and Sunday: $48, $80 and $98. Visit the box office (open Tuesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.) or charge by phone at 888-945-2468 or visit cfa.gmu.edu. The Center for the Arts complex is located on George Mason University’s Fairfax Campus at the intersection of Braddock Road and Route 123. Paid parking is located in the Mason Pond Parking Deck adjacent the Concert Hall and FREE parking is located in university Lot K. For more information, please visit cfa.gmu.edu. Like us on Facebook at Facebook.com/gmucfa and follow us on Twitter at @GMU_CFA.
About Great Performances at Mason
Great Performances at Mason is a program of George Mason University's Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA). CVPA provides an academic environment in which the arts are explored as individual disciplines and interdisciplinary forms that strengthen one another. The college prepares students for careers as creators, performers, teachers, scholars, arts leaders and arts entrepreneurs. Understanding that an education in the arts is deepened by regular contact with the work of distinguished visiting artists, the Center for the Arts, the professional presentation and production arm of the college, welcomes a variety of professional and world-renowned artists, musicians and actors to its stage. Students have the opportunity to perform, create and exhibit their work in a wide variety of public venues including a 2,000-seat Concert Hall. CVPA is home to the Schools of Music, Dance and Art, the Department of Theater, as well as the Computer Game Design, Arts Management and Film and Video Studies programs.
About George Mason University
George Mason University is an innovative, entrepreneurial institution with global distinction in a range of academic fields. Located in Northern Virginia near Washington, D.C., Mason provides students access to diverse cultural experiences and the most sought-after internships and employers in the country. Mason offers strong undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering and information technology, organizational psychology, health care and visual and performing arts. With Mason professors conducting groundbreaking research in areas such as climate change, public policy and the biosciences, George Mason University is a leading example of the modern, public university. George Mason University – Where