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The 128th Annual Valkyrie Awards:
A Hilarious Opera Outreach Program
The Valkyrie Awards is a high-spirited, hour-long celebration of the history of opera—the glory of its music, its great voices, and its larger-than-life personalities. Following the format of a celebrity awards television program, the Valkyrie Awards blends humor, high caliber performances, and theatrical flair into an educational and entertaining experience. The production is designed for audiences ranging from middle-school-age students to adults, and appeals to both the cognoscenti and newcomer alike, through wit, drama, and operatic intrigue. The four singers (a soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor, and baritone) play the roles of celebrities who partake in the charged and gossip-filled atmosphere of the ceremony (one full of tantrums, slights, upstaging antics, and battles of vocal range, speed, and stamina). Amidst this hubbub, the master of ceremonies outlines a chronology of the art form and both coaxes and steers the honored guests into some of the most famous arias, duets, trios, and quartets from opera's history. Among the works excerpted are Purcell's Dido and Aeneas, Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro ("The Marriage of Figaro"), Don Giovanni, and Die Zauberflöte ("The Magic Flute"), Rossini's Il barbiere di Siviglia ("The Barber of Seville"), Bizet's Carmen, Verdi's Rigoletto and Falstaff, Puccini's La Bohème and Tosca, and Ferrante's Jefferson & Poe. The singers are accompanied by a pianist, and there is a set, costumes, props, and of course, wonderful live music. A question and answer period with the performers follows the event.

All content copyright © 2007 Damon Ferrante. All Rights Reserved.