The genius of Mozart is defined by his expertise in a wide compositional range; Symphony, Opera, Solo Concerto, Chamber Music, Piano Sonata, and String Quartet & Quintet. He was described by his father as a prodigy of nature, “The miracle whom God caused to be born of a cold winter’s morning.”
This program features two of the operas from the collaboration with librettist Lorenzo Da Ponte. This 1786 (The Marriage of Figaro) and 1787 (Don Giovanni) blending of talents is not unlike that of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein from the American Musical Theater experience.
Worried about the subject matter, servile classes outwitting and rebelling against the ruling classes, which created a furor in Paris, Da Ponte went to the Austrian Emperor and assured him Mozart’s opera was going to be a masterpiece. Mozart’s enemies told singers that the opera was technically impossible to perform. However, The Marriage of Figaro was so successful with so many encores demanded that it ran nearly twice as long as expected.
It was in Prague that the next triumph debuted as Don Giovanni. The protagonist was not just a vulgar libertine in Mozart’s thinking, but an aristocrat, an exceptional man but without scruples or morals. Received with overwhelming success in Prague, but not so in Vienna, Joseph II commented, “Such music is not meant for the teeth of my Viennese.” Mozart is said to have replied, “Give them time to chew on it.”
The exposure of the genius of Mozart is given further proof as his first opera, “Apollo et Hyacinthus,” composed at age 11, is highlighted in this SAACA program. Having written his first 3 symphonies at age 9, it follows that Mozart would compose his first opera at 11! Although from his short life (35 years) he left us nearly 700 compositions, there is a sense of spontaneity in so much of Mozart’s music. “The Genius of Mozart” is finally unfathomable.
Tickets - $20 per person Preferred Seating Available for advance pre-paid reservations
St. Mark’s Church SW corner of Magee / La Canada
Narrator VIVIAN WEEDE has sung leading roles in La Traviata, La Boheme, Tosca, Pagliacci, Eugene Onegin & Carmen appearing with Seattle Opera, Rochester Symphony, San Francisco, West Bay Opera and New Orleans. She studied at the Manhattan School of Music and the Opera Department at Louisiana State University, and with her father-in-law, Met baritone Robert Weede, prior to studies in Italy with Franco Ferraris. She has done many opera previews for the OGSA and is Past President.
Soprano MARY PAUL, hailed for her flawless coloratura and impeccable phrasing, is a dynamic singing actress whose repertoire includes major roles in the operas of Mozart, Verdi, Donizetti, Johann Strauss and Richard Strauss, most notably The Queen of the Night, Susanna, Blonde, Despina, Gilda, Oscar, Marie, Norina, Adèle, Sophie, Zerbinetta and Olympia. She has performed with the opera companies of Washington DC, Miami, Utah, Arizona, Indianapolis, Sacramento, Chautauqua, Sarasota, Knoxville, Milwaukee, Chattanooga and Michigan, and as soprano soloist with Milwaukee Symphony, Chautauqua Symphony, Napa Valley Symphony, Bel Canto Festival and Chicago’s Dame Myra Hess Concert Series. Ms. Paul earned her B.Å. and M. A. Degrees in voice at the Univ. of Arizona in Tucson, where she currently resides with her husband, baritone Lawrence Alexander, and their two young children.
VANESSA SALAZ, soprano, has been a multiple prizewinner in the Metropolitan Opera Auditions, including 2nd place in the Western Region. She was also the national first place winner of the 2000 NATS Artist Award (NATSAA) leading to her Carnegie Hall debut. She has participated in many international competitions, including the final round of the Francisco Vinas International Singing Competition in Barcelona, Spain. She has participated in prestigious young artist programs such as Music Academy of the West, Opera Theater of St. Louis and the International Vocal Arts Institute in Tel Aviv, Israel, allowing her to receive guidance and training from top artists such as Marilyn Horne, Joan Dornemann, Stephen Lord and Warren Jones. Recent operatic performances include Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro with Connecticut Grand Opera, Donna Anna in Don Giovanni with the Festival Lyrique en Mer in Belle Ile, France, and Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni with Opera in the Heights in Houston, TX. Ms. Salaz holds a Master of Music degree from the University of Arizona and a Professional Studies Certificate from Manhattan School of Music.
Baritone, CHARLES RAY HAMILTON is currently a Doctoral Candidate in Vocal Performance at the University of Arizona. He recently sang the role of Germont in UofA Opera Theater's performance of Verdi's La Traviata. He has sung with the Utah Opera in productions of Fidelio, La Boheme, Carmen, Macbeth, and with the Utah Symphony. Comfortable on the opera stage as well as in musical theater, some of his favorite roles have included, Guglielmo in Cosi Fan Tutte, Figaro in the Marriage of Figaro, Leporello in Don Giovanni and Sweeney in Sweeney Todd. Originally from North Carolina, he now calls Tucson home, with his Wife and three children.
HUMBERTO BORBOA, tenor, is currently a graduate student of the University of Arizona pursuing his Master´s in Music in Vocal Performance under the guidance of Professor Grayson Hirst. Mr. Borboa made his debut in 2009 with Sociedad Artistica Sinaloense, company in Culiacan, singing the solo tenor role in Carl Orff´s Carmina Burana. He also has sung opera highlight concerts in Antigua, Guatemala and Chicago, Illinois as well in many places in Mexico. In 2010 Mr. Borboa sang Pergolesi´s opera buffa Il Maestro di Musica with Cultura Mazatlán, and in 2011 sang Count Almaviva in Rossini´s Il Barbiere di Seviglia with Da Corneto Opera Company in Chicago, and with Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes in Durango and Chihuahua. This year he has sung Mozart´s Bastien und Bastienne and Coronation Mass. Mr. Borboa earned his Bachelor Music Degree in Mexico at Escuela Superior de Canto de Mazatlán, and made his debut with The University of Arizona Opera Theater singing Alfredo at Verdi´s La Traviata in November 2012, next engagement the role of Tito in Mozart´s La Clemenza di Tito this coming april 2013 also with the UofA Opera Theather. ¨Powerfully graceful and bright tenor¨ . – Arizona Daily Star.
Pianist BONNIE BIRD studied at the Julliard Preparatory Division, later earning a Bachelor degree in Piano from Westminster Choir College in Princeton. She continued her musical studies at the University of Denver Lamont School of Music. She later earned a Master of Music degree in accompanying and voice from the College Conservatory of Music of the University of Cincinnati. Following a year teaching accompanying at CCM, she spent 6 years at Edgecliff College in Cincinnati as instructor in voice and Opera Workshop. Ms. Bird now resides in Tucson and is an accompanist and coach in the voice department for the U of A. She also maintains a private voice studio.