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World Premiere of DIDO THE QUEEN to Open in June at The Flamboyan Theater

Longtime artistic collaborators, Willa Bassen (Librettist and Dramaturg) and Nick Robertson (Director and Orchestrator) present the world premiere of Dido the Queen - A Folk Opera. This bluegrass inspired, puppet infused adaptation of Purcell's Dido & Aeneas has been specifically created for high school audiences by Bassen and Robertson from June 17-19 with five performances at the Flamboyan Theater at the Clemente Soto Vélez Cultural Center (107 Suffolk St). Performance schedule varies, please see calendar below. Ticket prices are $15 and can be purchased in advance by visiting www.BrownPaperTickets.com. (Service charges will apply.) Dido the Queen - A Folk Opera runs 75 minutes, no intermission.


Dido the Queen is a bluegrass inspired, puppet infused adaptation of Henry Purcell's opera, Dido & Aeneas, aimed at high school audiences. It's a complex jewel of a show which runs about an hour and features a live band, incredible performers, and stunning visual effects from start to finish.


Dido, a young queen in the midst of building the city of Carthage, is thrown into turmoil when the brave and handsome warrior Aeneas lands on her shores. Initially rejecting his advances, her ever observing court coaxes her into a relationship with the visitor for their own enjoyment. After a very swift and public romance, the lovers are split by a jealous and conniving sorceress, driving Dido and all of Carthage to a tragic end. Workshopped at New York University during the summer of 2015, this full production is made possible with generous funding from the Steinhardt School of Culture Education and Human Development Challenge Grant and The Speranza Foundation's Lincoln City Fellowship Grant.


Dido the Queen - A Folk Opera features puppets by Puppetry Director Kirsten Day Kammermeyer, choreography by Bethany Moore, music direction by Rebecca Greenstein, sound design by Alex Hurst, and lighting design by Ashley Vellano. The cast features Rachel Gubow(Dido), Jenny Mollet (Belinda), Kris Saint-Louis (Aeneas), Rachel Whorton (Sorceress), alongside an ensemble including Isis Bruno, Hank Burkhalter, Sarah Fleiss, Alexis Lounsbury, Trevor McGhie, Kyla McHale, Joana Meurkens, Greg Pernicone, Rudy Scala, Emma Vissicchio, Mike Walsh, Darren Whorton, with puppeteer Asher Muldoon. The four piece band includes Rita Dottor on fiddle, Jeff McLaughlin on mandolin, Gordon Green on guitar, and Alex Minier on bass.

Performances are scheduled for the following dates and times:

Friday, June 17th - 9:00pm

Saturday, June 18th - 2:00pm

Saturday, June 18th - 5:00pm

Saturday, June 18th - 9:00pm

Sunday, June 19th - 2:00pm

About the Artists

Dido the Queen was adapted by Willa Bassen (Librettist) and Nick Robertson (Director and Orchestrations) who met and became collaborators at the BMI Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Songwriting Workshop in 2010. Since then, they have written musicals for young audiences as part of Hall Pass, a site specific theatrical experience premiering at Grace Church School in 2015 with an upcoming production this spring in San Diego and an original show for young audiences entitled Perfect!

Robertson began NYU Steinhardt's Graduate Program in Educational Theatre in January 2014 where he met Kirsten Day Kammermeyer (Director of Puppetry) and Bethany Moore (Choreographer). Kammermeyer is co-founder of Alphabet Arts and has performed her work all over the world, most recently as part of Chris Green's puppet adaptation of Stravinsky's Firebird at New York City Center and in Chile. Moore is a singer, dancer, actor, and educator most recently seen on Broadway in Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark and the recent revival of Pippin. Robertson, Kammermeyer, and Moore all recently graduated from NYU this May.



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