The Sopranos meet The Addams Family in NJ Festival Orchestra’s upcoming production of Puccini’s only comedy, Gianni Schicchi. A cast of internationally acclaimed guest performers from NY Met Opera and beyond joins Maestro David Wroe and the fully professional orchestra to present this hilarious, rip-roaring comic romp of deception, greed and double-crossing. Gianni Schicchi will be performed in Hoboken (February 24) and Springfield (February 25).
Puccini’s comic masterpiece, a riotous one-acter, chronicles the backstabbing and conniving nature of the grasping Donati family of Florence, Italy, as they gather at the death bed of their rich uncle. Unexpectedly disinherited, they turn to an outsider, Gianni Schicchi, to change the will in their favor with hilarious and unexpected results.
Although originally a dark satire based on a real story mentioned in Dante’s Inferno, the squabbling, the greed, the feigned grief for the dead man and the real grief over the loss of a fortune all make for an excellent farce, brought up to date by stage director Beth Greenberg.
“This opera is a lot of fun,” said NJFO Music Director David Wroe. “The tempo is fast, the interpretation original, the score effervescent, and our guest artists are outstanding.”
Audience members will likely recognize one of Puccini’s most celebrated arias ever: “O mio babbino caro” which will be sung by Met Opera soprano Ashley Emerson in the role of Lauretta, Gianni Schicchi’s daughter. Dane Suarez will sing Lauretta’s lover Rinuccio, and Daniel Klein will sing the title role. Janice Myerson, mezzo-soprano, is Zita, the dead Buoso Donati’s cousin.
"We are thrilled to be joined by these fabulous singers,” continued Wroe. “Each of them is a star who has already graced the stages of some of the most magnificent concert halls and opera houses across the world. With their outstanding artistic interpretation and comedic technique, I predict that audience members will not only revel in the music – they’ll be laughing their heads off! Opera lovers and opera haters alike are in for a real treat!”
Top Row: Daniel Klein (left), Ashley Emerson (right)
Bottom Row: Dane Suarez (left), Janice Myerson (right)
Sung in Italian with English supertitles, Gianni Schicchi, has been made possible through the generous support from the NJ State Council on the Arts and The Joseph T. DeAlessandro Memorial Foundation.
Friday, February 24th at 8:00pm at DeBaun PAC, Stevens Institute of Technology, 24 5th St, Hoboken, NJ. For tickets and information, click here.
Saturday, February 25th at 7:00pm at Renaissance Church, 639 Mountain Ave, Springfield, NJ. For tickets and information, click here or call 908-232-9400.
The New Jersey Festival Orchestra is a premier, fully professional, symphony orchestra. Founded in Westfield in 1983, NJ Festival Orchestra has grown to become one of New Jersey’s largest professional orchestras, having a presence throughout many cultural communities of New Jersey, and appearing as far afield as Carnegie Hall on a regular basis.
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