KATHY MATTEA To Perform An Intimate Concert at the CHARLESTON LIGHT OPERA GUILD THEATRE In Celebration of Their 70th Anniversary
The Charleston Light Opera Guild (CLOG) is proud to announce that world renowned Country superstar Kathy Mattea will be performing at the Charleston Light Opera Guild Theatre on March 22nd, 2019 in a stunning and intimate benefit concert to commemorate CLOG's 70th anniversary season.
Mattea, one of country music's most successful singers, has won two Grammys and four Country Music Awards. Hailed by the Washington Post as "one of Nashville's finest song interpreters," Mattea has garnered four #1 country singles and five gold albums throughout her long and distinguished musical career. Before finding success in the mainstream, Mattea graced the CLOG stage in 1975 for their production of Godspell and returned numerous times for shows such as Applause and Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris. CLOG is excited for her return to their stage.
I spoke with Charleston Light Opera Guild's Artistic Director Nina Denton Pasinetti about her relationship with Kathy Mattea and Kathy's history working with CLOG.
"I first met Kathy when she attended a summer theatre audition for Godspell in 1974," explained Pasinetti. "The production was held at George Washington High School and presented by the Washington Community Education Center. Charleston Light Opera Guild's then Artistic Director, Tom Murphy, directed the production." Pasinetti served as choreographer.
From early on, Mattea's talent was noticeable, which made her stand out from the crowd. "There was a bevy of young auditioners and Kathy was one of the select group of ten chosen for the cast," said Pasinetti.
After a successful run at George Washington High School, Mattea reprised her role the following year for CLOG's production.
That production of Godspell, Pasinetti explained, was the start of a decades-long youth program. "The 1975 Guild production of Godspell marked the beginning of the group's summer theatre for older teens and adults. This program continues to date and has inspired numerous performers, many of whom have found career in the arts."
Pasinetti continued to work with Mattea throughout the years.
"My relationship with Kathy also consisted of choreographing Oklahoma! At Nitro High School where Kathy portrayed Ado Annie," explained Pasinetti.
Their relationship wasn't confined solely to theatre as Mattea, "was also part of a group called The Nina Denton Dancers that performed for area fashion shows." Mattea traveled with the George Washington Dance Company, which Pasinetti directed, to "New York City where the company attended Broadway productions, a performance by the New York City Ballet, had master dance classes and theatre seminars."
Pasinetti explains that these trips are where she began to see the true extent of Mattea's talents.
"It was during one of the NY trips that I recognized Kathy's potential stardom," said Pasinetti. "While attending a program with an open mic, she rose from her seat, walked with confidence to the stage, sat and played the piano and sang one of her compositions."
Pasinetti watched with pride as Mattea began to shape her musical career.
"Later Kathy would attend West Virginia University where she co-founded the bluegrass band Pennsboro. In 1978 she left school and moved to Nashville where she worked as a tour guide at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, and later as a waitress and demo singer."
Mattea's enthusiasm and drive eventually landed her a record deal. "She landed a contract with Mercury Records, releasing her first single in 1983, followed by her self-titled debut album in early 1984. In 1990 she won her first Grammy," explained Pasinetti.
"Kathy returned to see a Charleston Light Opera Guild production in the 1980s and asked me if I remembered her," said Pasinetti. "How could I ever forget the talented young girl with a passion for music and performance?"
Mattea has maintained a relationship with the Charleston Light Opera Guild since her humble beginnings on stage. "During the summer of 2014 the Charleston Light Opera Guild honored Kathy and the 1974 and 1975 casts of Godspell during a special 65th Anniversary performance and reception that celebrated 40 years of Young Adult Summer Theatre," said Pasinetti. "Kathy was very inspirational to both the young 2014 Godspell cast and audience with her onstage speech about following your dream."
Tickets for this one-of-a-kind event are on sale now for $70.00 and can be purchased through CLOG's ticket page or via phone at (304) 744-9596. Tickets will be available at the door, if the show is not sold out in advance, for $75.00. Tickets include access to a cocktail hour beginning at 7:00 PM which will continue after the concert with a special meet-and-greet with Kathy Mattea and the cutting of CLOG's 70th Anniversary cake. Doors open at 6:30 and the performance will begin at 7:30. This concert is sponsored by Lewis Glasser PLLC.
Those purchasing Kathy Mattea tickets will be given a chance to save 10% off tickets for CLOG's upcoming production of 42nd Street.