OSWEGO, NY – The Oswego Opera Theater and Artistic Director/Conductor Mack Richardson will present Amahl and the Night Visitors on December 20 at 2:30 p.m. at The American Foundry.
Tickets are $30 for preferred seating, $20 adult, and $5 for all students and children. Refreshments will be served following the performance (desserts, coffee, hot tea, hot chocolate). A cash bar is also available.
Amahl and the Night Visitors is the story of The Three Kings (of Orient Are), on their journey to find and worship the Christ Child, who stop to rest at the home of Amahl and his penniless widowed mother.
Commissioned in 1951 by NBC-TV, it was the first opera written for television and has become a staple of the holiday season ever since. Gian-Carlo Menotti’s beautiful music and the heartwarming story are enjoyed by people of all ages.
Menotti was an Italian-American composer and librettist. Although he often referred to himself as an American composer, he kept his Italian citizenship. He wrote the classic Christmas opera Amahl and the Night Visitors, along with over two dozen other operas intended to appeal to popular taste.
He won the Pulitzer Prize twice, for The Consul (1950) and for The Saint of Bleecker Street (1955). He founded the noted Festival dei Due Mondi (Festival of the Two Worlds) in Spoleto in 1958 and its American counterpart, Spoleto Festival USA, in 1977. Menotti died on February 1, 2007, at the age of 95 in a hospital in Monte Carlo, Monaco, where he had a home.
The character of Amahl is always portrayed by a boy soprano, and the Oswego Opera Theater production features 12-year-old David Griffith, an eighth grade East Syracuse Minoa Pine Grove Middle School student.
According to Oswego Opera Theater Artist Director/Conductor Mack Richardson, this is Griffith’s first opera. David’s most recent role was Jojo in Seussical at the Redhouse in Syracuse. David has been selected for many school plays and countywide, school and local events that involve singing and/or performing arts.
He has attended the Summer Music Academy at Ithaca College for performing arts the past two years. David enjoys music on many levels including playing the trumpet, guitar, and piano.
Danan Tsan, a versatile performer with a background in classical singing will portray Amahl’s mother in the production, according to Richardson. She has appeared with Syracuse Opera as Charlotte in A Little Night Music, Aldonza/Dulcinea in Man of La Mancha, with Oswego Opera as Maddalena in Verdi’s Rigoletto, and starred as Fantine in the Baldwinsville Theatre Guild’s production of Les Misérables. She has been featured with Symphoria, The Buffalo Philharmonic Pops Orchestra, The Cincinnati Pops, and The Naples Pops Orchestra with Erich Kunzel. With the Society for New Music, Danan played the role of Sorcerer, in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, and as Daughter, in Michael Torke’s Strawberry Fields.
She continues to be featured on recital and cabaret series around Central New York, including the OASIS series, and the Utica College Jackson Lunch Hour Series. Along with being an accomplished classical singer, Danan has many original pop songs featured in films in America and Japan.
Tsan holds degrees from Southern Methodist University (BM, ‘97) and The Eastman School of Music (MM ’00). She lives in Syracuse with her husband and three children. She currently teaches voice and directs the Chamber Singers at LeMoyne College and is the Associate Director of the Syracuse Community Choir.
Additional cast members and Oswego Opera Theater production staff include: Andrew Richardson, King Melchior; Tallon Larham, King Kaspar; Jason Holmes, King Balthazar; Dan Williams, a Page; Pianists: Mihoko Tsutsumi (professor, SUNY Oswego) and Veronica Shaver (retired Oswego City Schools music teacher); and Stage Director: Garrett Heater.
For ticket information please call (315) 638-0674 or (315) 529-3296, visit Facebook: Oswego Opera Theater; or email [email protected]