Vienna, VA (August 10, 2017) Wolf Trap Opera concludes its resident season with a double-bill and company premieres of John Musto’s Bastianello and Philip Glass and Robert Moran’s The Juniper Tree in fully staged, new productions opening on Friday, August 11 at 7:30 p.m. at The Barns at Wolf Trap. Three additional performances are scheduled for Sunday, August 13 at 3 p.m., Wednesday, August 16 at 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, August 19 at 7:30 p.m. See below for complete casting and ticketing information. High resolution production images are available upon request.
“Our expanded 2017 season and the strengths of our artist roster provided us with an opportunity to present current opera styles and bring the gripping storytelling and humor of these seldom seen American operas to life. These singers are particularly suited to these two pieces and will bring fresh interpretations to the retelling of this folktale and fairy-tale,” stated Kim Pensinger Witman, Senior Director of Wolf Trap Opera, a premier training ground for opera talent.
There are many variations of the fairy-tales that inspired both of these operas. For John Musto’s retelling of Bastianello, librettist Mark Campbell chose an Italian version of the story in which a man mistakes the reflection of the full moon in a lake for the face of his wife, who had drowned there after the couple argued. He writes, “That felt instantly and resonantly operatic to me, and became my way of telling the story.” A Wolf Trap Opera premiere, Bastianello had its first performance by the New York Festival of Song at Carnegie Hall on March 11, 2008.
For The Juniper Tree, American composers Philip Glass and Robert Moran collaborated to bring this Grimm fairy-tale to life. In an interview Glass said, “I took what I thought would be effective for me and Bob (Moran) took the other sections, with the shocking violence, murder, cannibalism. You know, he does that so well.” Also a Wolf Trap Opera premiere, The Juniper Tree had its first performance by American Repertory Theater on December 11, 1985. This production of The Juniper Tree is part of the Glass@80 worldwide celebrations for Philip Glass’ 80th birthday.
Bastianello and The Juniper Tree are conducted by Lidiya Yankovskaya and directed by R. B. Schlather, with scenic and costume design by Blake Palmer, lighting by Robert H. Grimes, and wigs and makeup by Anne Nesmith. As part of Wolf Trap Opera’s broadcast initiative, performances will be filmed and audio recorded for future radio broadcasts and online streaming.
Continuing Wolf Trap Opera’s tradition as a top-tier operatic training program for emerging artists, all principal roles will be performed by Wolf Trap Opera’s Filene Young Artists. The cast for Bastianello, in order of appearance, includes tenor Jonas Hacker (Young Man/Lambent), baritone Shea Owens (Bastianello, the Elder/Frediano/Ippolito/Lino), soprano Summer Hassan (Ortensia/Ettalina/Eustacia), baritone Richard Ollarsaba (Luciano), and mezzo-soprano Zoie Reams (Amadora/Stelladora).
The cast for The Juniper Tree, in order of appearance, includes soprano Summer Hassan (Mother), baritone Ben Edquist (Father), mezzo-soprano Megan Mikailovna Samarin (Son), mezzo-soprano Annie Rosen (Stepmother), and soprano Madison Leonard (Daughter). Wolf Trap Opera’s elite group of young professional singers is chosen through a highly selective annual nationwide audition tour. See complete casting below.
Since 1971, Wolf Trap Opera has mounted more than 130 productions of over 80 different operas. In addition to The Juniper Tree and Bastianello, the 2017 summer opera season featured Rossini’s The Touchstone (La pietra del paragone) at The Barns and Puccini’s Tosca at the Filene Center with the National Symphony Orchestra led by Grant Gershon. Additionally, Wolf Trap Opera presented concerts and productions at venues across the region, including Halcyon Stage at Dock 5, The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center, Union Market and Wolf Trap’s Children’s Theatre-in-the –Woods. Visit wolftrap.org/opera for more information.
Special thanks to Dan and Gayle D’Aniello, Wolf Trap 2017 Season Underwriters
and Ed and Andy Smith, Performance Sponsors.
Wolf Trap Opera is a program of Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, produces and presents a full range of performance and education programs in the Greater Washington area, as well as nationally. Wolf Trap features three performance venues: the outdoor Filene Center and Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods, both located at Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts, and The Barns at Wolf Trap, located down the road from the national park and adjacent to the Center for Education at Wolf Trap. The 7,028-seat Filene Center is operated in partnership with the National Park Service and annually showcases an extensive array of diverse artists, ranging from pop, country, folk, and blues to classical music, dance, and theatre, as well as multimedia presentations, from May through September. The Barns at Wolf Trap is operated by the Wolf Trap Foundation year round, and during the summer months is home to the Grammy-nominated Wolf Trap Opera, one of America’s outstanding resident ensemble programs for young opera singers. Wolf Trap Foundation’s education programs include the nationally acclaimed Wolf Trap Institute for Early Learning Through the Arts, Children’s Theatre-in-the-Woods, a diverse array of arts education classes, grants, and a nationally recognized internship program.
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Press passes and high-resolution production photos may be available upon request.
PRODUCTION AND TICKETING INFORMATION
New Production, Company Premiere
Music by John Musto | Libretto by Mark Campbell
The Juniper Tree
New Production, Company Premiere
Music by Philip Glass and Robert Moran | Libretto by Arthur Yorinks
Friday, August 11, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, August 13, 2017 at 3 p.m.
Wednesday, August 16 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, August 19, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
Inside the Opera pre-show talk begins one hour before curtain at the Center for Education at Wolf Trap, next door to The Barns at Wolf Trap.
The Barns at Wolf Trap is located 1635 Trap Road, Vienna, VA 22182
2.5 hours with one intermission | In English with projected text
Tickets start at $32 and can be purchased online at wolftrap.org, in person at the Filene Center and Barns Box Offices, or by phone at 877.WOLFTRAP.
CAST - Bastianello
Young Man Jonas Hacker
Bastianello, the Elder, father of the bride Shea Owens
Ortensia, mother of the groom Summer Hassan
Luciano, the groom Richard Ollarsaba
Amadora, the bride Zoie Reams
Frediano Shea Owens
Ettalina, his wife Summer Hassan
The Gate of a Village
Eustacia, a bride Summer Hassan
Stelladora, mother of the bride Zoie Reams
Lambent, a horse Jonas Hacker
Ippolito, the horse owner Shea Owens
Lino, a fisherman Shea Owens
CAST – The Juniper Tree
Stepmother Annie Rosen
Son Megan Mikailovna Samarin
Daughter Madison Leonard
Father Ben Edquist
Mother Summer Hassan
Goldsmith Andrew Gilstrap*
Cobbler Michael J. Hawk*
Miller Sam Grosby*
Mama Bird Maria Brea*
Baby Birds* Lauren Feider, Ashley Milanese, Onadek Winan, Amanda Bottoms, Gretchen Krupp, Nicole Thomas,
Village Folk* Matthew Adam Fleisher, Jonathan Bryan, Ricardo Garcia, Cory Gross, Geoffrey Hahn, Senhica Klee
Conductor Lidiya Yankovskaya
Director R. B. Schlather
Scenic & Costumer Designer Blake Palmer
Lighting Designer Robert H. Grimes
Wig & Makeup Designer Anne Nesmith
Chorusmaster Joseph Li