Opera Saratoga Launches 2017-18 Season with SARATOGA SINGS FOR SENIORS
Lawrence Edelson announced the return of Saratoga Sings for Seniors, to launch his fourth season as Artistic and General Director of Opera Saratoga.
Saratoga Sings for Seniors is an initiative introduced by Edelson in 2014 to bring opera into the lives of older adults throughout the area. Saratoga Sings for Seniors will feature a nine-day performance tour to 17 retirement communities, senior centers and assisted living facilities throughout the Capital Region. That is a 30 percent increase over last year. Three alumni of Opera Saratoga's nationally acclaimed Young Artist Program, soprano Shelley Marie Mihm, baritone Garrett Obrycki, and pianist Sara Chiesa, will return to Opera Saratoga to perform 17 free concerts of favorite arias, duets and songs from opera and musical theater, including a special preview of the company's upcoming production of Lehár's beloved operetta, The Merry Widow. The Saratoga Sings for Seniors tour will begin on November 3rd, during National Opera Week (sponsored by OPERA America), and will run through November 11th.
"Saratoga Sings for Seniors has become one of my favorite initiatives at Opera Saratoga," Edelson explained. "Serving our community is at the core of everything we do, and this program is truly one of the most rewarding and heartwarming ways we impact the lives of those who live throughout the region. It is the perfect way for us to launch the season!"
Friday, November 3rd
Fort Hudson - Medical and Social Services
319 Fort Hudson, Fort Edward, NY 12828
6 Winner Circle, Albany, NY 12204
Saturday, November 4th
Beverwyck Senior Living Community
Home of the Good Shepherd - Memory Center
390 Church Street, Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
Sunday, November 5th
Warren Center (Open to the Public)
Monday, November 6th
The Summit at Saratoga
The Grove (Open to the Public)
Tuesday, November 7th
Center for Disability Services - Avila
Center for Disability Services
Wednesday, November 8th
Saratoga Senior Center (Open to the Public)
Midrise Senior Apartments
180 N Main Street, Mechanicville, NY 12118
Thursday, November 9th
Prestwick Chase (Open to the Public)
One Glen Eddy Drive, Niskayuna, NY 12309
Friday, November 10th
The Glen at Hiland Meadows
Saturday, November 11th
The Wesley Community (Open to the Public)
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Soprano Shelley Marie Mihm is an alumna of Opera Saratoga's Young Artist Program, where she covered the role of Sadie Pollock in The Cradle Will Rock. She was also recently named a semi-finalist for the NATSAA National Vocal Competition. This season, Mihm will perform the soprano solo in Poulenc's Gloria with Saint Mary's Episcopal Church in High Point, NC as well as performing on several collaborative recitals throughout North Carolina. Last season Mihm received an Encouragement Award from the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, performed the role of Magda in The Consul with the University of North Carolina Greensboro, and covered the role of Micäela in Greensboro Opera's Carmen. In the 2015-2016 season Mihm performed the role of Savitri in Savitri, and Blanche in Dialogues des Carmélites with the University of North Carolina Greensboro. She also appeared as Rosabella in The Most Happy Fella with the Seagle Music Colony in New York. In 2014 Miss Mihm debuted as Micäela in Carmen with the University of Minnesota, and Margaret in The Clever Artifice of Harriet and Margaret with the Really Spicy Opera Company. In 2014 Mihm placed first in the North Dakota District of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and was chosen to perform as a solo artist with the North Dakota Symphony. She also competed as a top ten finalist in the National Opera Association Vocal Competition and placed second in the Schubert Club Vocal Competition. In past seasons Miss Mihm performed the title role of the vixen in The Cunning Little Vixen, and Helena in A Midsummer Night's Dream with the University of Minnesota.
This season, baritone Garrett Obrycki performed with Opera Philadelphia during its inaugural O17 festival; with Cookie Diorio for "Art in the Heel" during the Philadelphia Fringe Festival; with Middlebury Opera Company, covering Belcore in its fall production of L'elisir d'amore; was a member of Opera Saratoga's 2017 Young Artist Program, covering multiple roles in The Cradle Will Rock; and was featured with the Skidmore College Orchestra as the soloist for Carmina Burana. Career highlights include Sid in Albert Herring with Temple Opera, Don Giovanni with Opera Ithaca, and Tarquinius in The Rape of Lucretia with Eastman Opera. A frequent performer of new works, Obrycki has joined Opera Philadelphia for four workshops, including David T. Little's JFK, and has sung in the world premieres of Missy Mazzoli's Breaking the Waves, Jeff Myers' Maren of Vardø, Bonnie Montgomery's Billy Blythe and Evan Mack's Roscoe. Obrycki has trained with Opera Saratoga, Seagle Music Colony and the Eastman School of Music.
American coach/pianist Sara Chiesa has coached and performed throughout the United States, Italy, Montreal, Prague, and Singapore. Most recently, she was the principal coach/pianist for Syracuse Opera's production of Carmen. In the summer of 2017, she was the principal coach/pianist for Pirates of Penzance with the Utah Festival Opera in Logan, Utah. In the 2016-2017 season, Ms. Chiesa regularly coached the resident artists of l'Opéra de Montréal, and she was the principal coach/assistant conductor for Amahl and the Night Visitors there, Our Town at Fresno Grand Opera/Townsend Opera, Eugene Onegin at Syracuse Opera, and Side by Side by Sondheim with Resonance Works in Pittsburgh. As a champion of modern American opera and song, she has coached and played several 20th/21st century works, including the immense task of learning Dead Man Walking with one week's notice. Ms. Chiesa has worked with Arizona Opera, Chicago Summer Opera, Fresno Grand Opera, Hubbard Hall Opera Theatre, Michigan Opera Theatre, New Opera Singapore, Opera Saratoga, Resonance Works, Syracuse Opera, Townsend Opera, Virginia Opera, the Interlochen Arts Academy, the Prague International Piano Masterclasses, and the Festival dei due mondi in Spoleto, Italy. She holds a collaborative piano degree from Florida State University (D.M.A.) as well as two piano performance degrees from Bowling Green State University (M.M.) and Oakland University (B.M.). Ms. Chiesa currently resides in Detroit, Michigan.
ABOUT OPERA SARATOGA
Opera Saratoga, formerly known as Lake George Opera, began with a production of Die Fledermaus at the Diamond Point Theatre on July 5, 1962, playing to an audience of 230. The Company now calls Saratoga Springs home and performs for more than 25,000 people annually. Opera Saratoga serves the communities of Saratoga Springs, the Lower Adirondack and New York State Capital areas by providing access to world-class opera through the production of an annual Summer Festival, as well as year-round activities including extensive educational programs, mentorship of emerging operatic artists, and unique opportunities for the public to experience opera in both our home theater and non-traditional venues that leverage and embrace the unique cultural, historic, and natural resources of the area. To date, the Company has performed over 90 different fully-staged works by over 50 different composers, including thirty-three works by American composers and six world-premiere productions. In 2014, the Board of Directors appointed Lawrence Edelson Opera Saratoga's Artistic and General Director. Edelson's leadership marked a new chapter in the company's history, with increased emphasis on community partnerships throughout the year, diversification of the company's repertoire, and a reaffirmed commitment to both the presentation of American opera and the mentorship of emerging artists as core activities in the company's programs each season. The 2018 Summer Festival marks the fourth season under his leadership. For more information, visit www.operasaratoga.org.
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