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Jefferson Performing Arts Society Presents A COMEDY OF TENORS

One hotel suite, two wives, three girlfriends, four tenors, and a soccer stadium filled with screaming fans…

Jefferson Performing Arts Society Presents A COMEDY OF TENORS

Jefferson Performing Arts Society will stage the New Orleans area debut of Ken Ludwig's hit A Comedy of Tenors from April 9-18, 2021, at Jefferson Performing Arts Center in Metairie. A total of six performances will be offered at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 2:00 p.m. on Sundays. The 2015 play is a lively fast-paced farce that features local opera singers with hilarious opera references that, according to director Anthony Laciura, "...has nothing to do with opera and everything to do with opera TENORS!"

One hotel suite, two wives, three girlfriends, four tenors, and a soccer stadium filled with screaming fans...It's 1930s Paris and the stage is set for the concert of the century - as long as producer Henry Saunders can keep Italian superstar Tito Merelli and his hot-blooded wife, Maria, from causing complete chaos!

Two years have passed since the disaster-filled night in 1934 when the chronically perturbed Cleveland Opera Manager Henry Saunders brought famed Italian tenor Tito Merelli to town to sing the title role in Verdi's Otello. In less than three hours "The Concert of Three Tenors", which he is producing, is scheduled to begin. With his much-abused assistant Max, Saunders is again awaiting the delayed arrival of Tito and his wife Maria. Max is now also an opera singer as well as Saunders' son-in-law and one of the evening's three concert tenors. After Tito and Maria finally arrive, Tito goes off with Maria for a nap...and the mayhem begins. Everything that can go wrong does, including clandestine love affairs, romantic misunderstandings, and enormous operatic egos threatening to cancel the entire concert.

ABOUT THE DIRECTOR

Director and native New Orleanian Anthony Laciura is known internationally for his work as an operatic tenor; he has appeared with the Metropolitan Opera Company in more than 800 performances. During Laciura's time as a comprimario at the Met, The Washington Post labeled him "The Clown Prince of Opera...one of the outstanding character-tenors of our time."

Laciura has directed productions of Verdi's Otello with the Vero Beach Opera, Purcell's Dido and Aeneas, Puccini's La bohème, Tosca, Madama Butterfly for Phoenix Opera, Verdi's Rigoletto for Dicapo Opera in New York, and Puccini's La fanciulla del West at Knoxville Opera. Laciura is the recipient of two SAG Actor awards for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series for his role on HBO's series Boardwalk Empire (2010-2013).

As a boy soprano, Laciura made his operatic debut in 1965 at the New Orleans Opera Association. As an adult, he gave many performances with the Association and earned music degrees from Loyola University and Tulane University.

ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT

"Playwright Ken Ludwig is to contemporary domestic stage comedy what Arthur Miller was to the dramatic theater of his time." - Contra Costa Times

Ken Ludwig has been called American's preeminent comic playwright. He has had six shows on Broadway, seven in London's West End, and many of his works have become a standard part of the American repertoire. Lend Me a Tenor won two Tony Awards and was called "one of the classic comedies of the 20th century" by The Washington Post. Crazy For You was on Broadway for five years and won the Tony and Olivier Awards for Best Musical.

In addition, Ludwig has won two Laurence Olivier Awards (England's highest theatre honor), two Helen Hayes Awards, the Edgar Award for Best Mystery of the Year for The Game's Afoot, and the Edwin Forrest Award for Contributions to the American Theater.

THE CAST

María Victoria HEFTE- Racon

Jake WYNNE-WILSON - Carlo

Robert Wagner - Tito

Elizabeth LOWRY - Maria

Bailey GABRISH- Mimi

Enrico CANNELLA-Max

Wayne GONSOULIN - Saunders

THE CREW

Katie BANDIT - Stage Manager

Eric Porter-Scenic Designer

Roland GUIDRY-Costume Designer

Laurin HART - Wigs and Makeup Designer

Kage LANEY - Sound Designer

Carlyle STYER - Lighting Designer

TICKETS

The production is two weekends and six performances only from April 9-18, 2021 at Jefferson Performing Arts Center, at 6400 Airline Drive in Metairie. Tickets are limited due to Covid requirements and restrictions for physically distanced seating. Masks must be worn by all patrons upon entering the building and for the duration of the show. A temperature check is administered upon arrival at Jefferson Performing Arts Center. Tickets can be purchased online at www.jpas.org or by phone at 504-885-2000. The box office opens one hour prior to showtime.


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