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Utah Opera Will Keep Audiences Laughing With Donizetti's THE DAUGHTER OF THE REGIMENT

Familiar faces are back in the spotlight—including a highly anticipated appearance by local Utah acting legend Anne Cullimore Decker.

Utah Opera Will Keep Audiences Laughing With Donizetti's THE DAUGHTER OF THE REGIMENT

Colorful French regalia takes center stage in Donizetti's The Daughter of the Regiment-Utah Opera's premiere performance of this lively and colorful opera composition. Audience-favorite artists return to share the spotlight onstage at the Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre, while others take the lead behind the scenes.

Guided by the brilliantly eccentric vision of Director Michael Shell (who previously directed a delightful contemporary take on The Barber of Seville with the Utah Opera), this performance brings together a host of familiar faces, including Matthew Burns (who received big laughs as Dr. Bartolo in The Barber of Seville) as Sergeant Sulpice, Elise Quagliata (who gave a stunning performance as the Minskwoman in Utah Opera's January 2022 production of Flight) as The Marquise of Berkenfield, and Utah-based international star Madison Leonard (who appeared as the leading lady, the lovely Mabel, in Utah Opera's The Pirates of Penzance) portraying Marie. In addition, local acting legend Anne Cullimore Decker (one of Utah's premier dramatic artists in theater, opera, television, and film) will make a guest appearance as The Duchess of Krakenthorp-a speaking role that has a long history of being played local celebrities and public figures, from Kathleen Turner to Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

With five performances between January 14 and 22, audiences have the opportunity to experience Michael Shell's vivacious and updated take on this heartwarming comic opera.

The Daughter of the Regiment tells the story of love in multiple forms-bringing together both romantic and familial bonds through clever, and sometimes silly, storytelling. The tale begins with Marie, a spunky heroine who was orphaned at birth, then found and adopted by a French regiment. Raised by nearly two-dozen "fathers," she grows up in the rough-and-tumble life of a soldier. Everything changes when she encounters Tonio, a local villager in the town that the regiment has invaded, literally falling for him in their happenstance meeting. (Tonio-played by one of today's leading tenors, Jack Swanson, in his Utah Opera debut- expresses his joy in the opera's most famous aria, "Ah! mes amis." In an incredible feat of vocal acrobatics, the aria features no fewer than nine high Cs, never failing to evoke delight and awe from the audience!)

Before their romance can fully bloom, Marie is whisked away by a mysterious relative, determined to shape her into a lady of proper refinement. A variety of hijinks ensue as Tonio and Marie's loyal band of "fathers" attempt to find a way to return her to her true love.

The brightly colored, immaculately detailed, and slightly over-the-top costumes for this unique production of The Daughter of the Regiment were fully built by Utah Opera's costume department-with 46 brand-new costumes designed and created in-house at Utah Opera, one of just six opera companies in the U.S. with full production capabilities, including costume, scenic, and props shops. Built from the "skin out," there are thousands of individual pieces that work together to create cohesive costumes for the full ensemble look. Linda Pisano, Costume Designer for this production, states that "the wonderful thing about everything being built [in house] is that it's customized to the performer, but also to the vision of the director."

Inspired by paintings from the Napoleonic era, the costume creation for this production has been in progress since June of 2022. Pisano diligently researched the time period before sharing her designs with Utah Opera. With nearly 300 pages of detailed research and drawings, Pisano, alongside the talented artisans of the Utah Opera costume department, brought this colorful vision to life. "I am most excited to see the audience's response ... I want them to engage in the voices, the orchestration, the directing, the choreography, the designing-I hope the audience can see how many hands have touched this story," says Pisano.

With this comedic opera, Director Michael Shell wanted to maximize the opportunities to engage the audience. Veering on the edge of operetta or musical theatre, The Daughter of the Regiment includes spoken dialogue, which Shell decided to present in English. By translating the libretto from French to English, Shell's revisions were intended to help audiences better understand what was happening-and to follow along with the jokes inserted into the performance. Matthew Burns (Sergeant Sulpice) explains, "We have worked together with the directing staff to come up with a script that feels very much ... like modern comedy." Audiences can expect to enjoy all the clever one-liners and lingering jokes that the artists have in store. Paired with the stunning visuals and epic music-performed live by cast, the Utah Opera Chorus, and the Utah Symphony-audiences are in store for a dazzling night with this rarely-performed, heartwarming comedy about growing up, fighting for love, and the "family" we choose.


Season Sponsor for Utah Symphony | Utah Opera is the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation. Utah Opera expresses its gratitude to Production Sponsor The George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Foundation, Opera Artistic Director Sponsor Emma Eccles Jones Foundation, Conductor Sponsor Opera America, Director Sponsor, Janet Q. Lawson Foundation, Set and Costume Sponsor Salt Lake Arts County ZAP, Leading Lady Sponsor Grand America & Little America, and Opening Night Sponsor John & Marcia Price Family Foundation.


Utah Opera Presents
Donizetti's The Daughter of the Regiment

Saturday, January 14 / 7:30 PM

Monday, January 16 / 7:00 PM

Wednesday, January 18 / 7:00 PM

Friday, January 20 / 7:30 PM

Sunday, January 22 / 2:00 PM


Janet Quinney Lawson Capitol Theatre

(50 W 200 S, Salt Lake City, Utah)

Composed by Gaetano Donizetti

Directed by Michael Shell

Conducted by Stephanie Rhodes Russell

Sung in French with English dialogue and English supertitles.

Cast:

Marie ........................................................Madison Leonard

Tonio.........................................................Jack Swanson

Sergeant Sulpice.......................................Matthew Burns
The Marquise of Berkenfield ....................Elise Quagliata
Hortensius ................................................Kevin Nakatani
A corporal .................................................Tshilidzi Ndou*
A peasant .................................................Jehu Otero*

The Duchess of Krakenthorp.....................Anne Cullimore Decker

*Utah Opera Resident Artist

Featuring the Utah Symphony and the Utah Opera Chorus

Tickets start at $30 (50% student and under 30 discounts available). Online at utahopera.org / By Phone at (801) 533-NOTE (6683)

Prices are subject to change.



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