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Loyola University New Orleans Opera Theatre and Jefferson Performing Arts Society present Little Women 

By Loyola University on Mon, 02/17/2020 - 14:25

(New Orleans, La. –Feb. 18, 2020) Loyola Opera Theatre will present Little Women by Mark Adamo this spring in the beautiful new Jefferson Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 21 and at 3 p.m. Sunday, March 22, 2020. This wonderful facility, at 1118 Clearview Parkway, Metairie, La. 70001, is an exciting new theatre in the metropolitan area (and offers free parking!) Tickets may be purchased at presents.loyno.edu.

Little Women is American composer Mark Adamo’s first opera, composed for the Studio of Houston Grand Opera in 1998 and revived there in 2000. Those performances were taped for telecast in the PBS series Great Performances and aired in the summer of 2001. It has since been performed at universities and by professional companies throughout the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Japan, and Australia. Adamo served as his own librettist, choosing scenes from Louisa May Alcott’s tale iconic novel about family life in New England after the American Civil War.

“It’s really the first contemporary opera which has become a staple of the opera repertoire, which I find exciting,” said Carol Rausch, director of the Loyola Opera Theatre.  “And it’s showcasing the current group of Loyola opera students from Loyola really well.”  

Fully staged with a complete orchestra, the spring production by Loyola Opera Theatre at the Jefferson Performing Arts Center will be directed by Eric Gibson and conducted by Carol Rausch. The cast includes primarily graduate students and a few talented regional artists, many of them Loyola alumni.

Rausch, who became director of Loyola Opera Theatre in 2010, is also currently the Chorus Master/Music Administrator for Chatauqua Opera’s summer festival and for the New Orleans Opera Association. Several Loyola vocalists have been members of the Opera Chorus and performed roles for the company’s main stage productions, in addition to participating in outreach concerts for Opera on Tap, Opéra Nouvelle and touring educational shows for the MetroPelican Opera.

Gibson is Director of Lyric Theatre at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff and has staged both opera and musical theater productions throughout the U.S. and abroad. Last summer, he joined Loyola voice faculty members Luretta Bybee and Dr. Tyler Smith at the International Performing Arts Institute in Germany and will return there in 2020.

Started in 1954 as the Loyola Opera Workshop, Loyola Opera Theatre has entertained New Orleans audiences for 70 years and produced some of the world’s greatest opera stars, including the late Charles Anthony, internationally renowned bass-baritones Greer Grimsley and Alfred Walker, tenors Bryan Hymel and Anthony Laicura, and sopranos Ruth Falcon, Phyllis Treigle, Angela Mannino and Sarah Jane McMahon, among many others. Recent alumni, including award-winning mezzo-soprano Claire Shackleton and David Castillo, have performed around the region and all over the world. Loyola Opera Theatre productions have won numerous Gambit magazine “Tribute to the Classical Arts” awards.

Taught by a star-studded faculty, Loyola Opera Theatre is merely one performance outlet and learning opportunity for Loyola opera students, who pursue a rigorous curriculum in the university’s 100-year-old School of Music and Theatre Arts in the College of Music and Media. Every singer works one-on-one with renowned voice faculty in weekly private lessons leading up to a junior and senior recital. Loyola faculty support student participation (and wins!) in the prestigious National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competitions and the Metropolitan Opera Council Auditions. Loyola is also a regional host of the Met Auditions.