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City Lyric Opera Presents NY Premiere of Viardot's CENDRILLON, December 16-18


Celebrating its New York premiere, Cinderella is an enchanting, accessible chamber-opera that retells the well-loved story of Charles Perrault's fairy tale.

One of New York City's most innovative opera companies, City Lyric Opera, has chosen Pauline Viardot's Cendrillon (Cinderella) to open the company's sixth season.

Celebrating its New York premiere, Cinderella is an enchanting, accessible chamber-opera that retells the well-loved story of Charles Perrault's fairy tale, Cinderella, with wit and imagination. For an ensemble of seven, small chorus, and 11-piece chamber orchestra, CLO casts Peruvian soprano Shaina Martinez-Azzopardi (2021 Met Council semifinalist) as Cinderella, and tenor Nicholas Huff (Florida Grand Opera) as the Prince.

According to Megan Gillis, co-founder of City Lyric Opera, this marks the company's first live, in-person production since November of 2019. "On behalf of City Lyric Opera's staff, I cannot emphasize enough how grateful we are to be returning to live, staged performances. Our all-female production team has been anticipating this day for a long time. Surprisingly, the fully-staged version of Viardot's Cinderella has never been shared with New York audiences before. We look forward to returning to the stage with the resurrection of this operatic gem."

In Paris in retirement, Viardot presided over a salon where she wrote compositions for pupils. In 1904 at the age of 83, she premiered her final opera Cendrillon. A feather-light work composed in an operetta style combining musical numbers and dialogues, it was perfect entertainment for an evening's salon. The plot follows roughly that of Rossini's opera with extra twists. Instead of a step-mother, this story has the foolish Baron de Pictordu, with his two vain daughters, Maguelone and Armelinde, that are both after the Prince. Cinderella reads about a fairy-tale prince at the beginning, and her father is revealed to be a former grocer with a dubious past.

CLO's most recent production was an online performance of Weill and Brecht's musical comedy The Threepenny Opera. Hailed for its groundbreaking adaptation, critics agreed that it was a vivid manipulation of virtual life. "Rigotti and CLO's inventive design team and cast offered spirited, creditable work. CLO hit its ambitious targets with exuberance and technical bravado." (Opera News)

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