North Carolina Opera will open its 2012-2013 season on Jan. 27, 2013 at 3 p.m., with a concert of the music of Richard Wagner , in honor of the bicentennial of the composer’s birth, in Meymandi Concert Hall in Duke Energy Center in Raleigh. The concert will include favorite selections from several of Wagner’s most popular operas, including Act I of Die Walküre, in what is thought to be the first performance from Wagner’s Ring Cycle in the Triangle, Ride of the Valkyries from Die Walküre, as well as excerpts from Die Meistersinger, Tristan und Isolde and The Flying Dutchman.
Internationally acclaimed talent will perform, including tenor Jay Hunter Morris, who sings the famously difficult role of Siegfried in Wagner’s Ring Cycle with the Metropolitan Opera; Elizabeth Bishop, who has sung leading Wagner roles at the Metropolitan Opera and San Francisco Opera, as Sieglinde; and Metropolitan Opera bass Peter Volpe as Hunding. NCO Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Timothy Myers will lead 80 members of the North Carolina Opera Orchestra. The two-hour performance will be sung in German with English supertitles.
Richard Wagner (1813-1883) was one of the most important composers of the nineteenth century. Over a twenty-five year period he created the epic four-opera cycle The Ring of the Nibelung, based on Germanic and Norse mythology. The Ring tells the story of the struggle of redemptive love against lust for power, played out over no less a backdrop than the creation and destruction of the world. To tell the story Wagner created a new musical language and even designed a new theater and new instruments. NCO’s performance will include these “Wagner tubas” in the complete first act of The Valkyrie, the second opera of the cycle.
“North Carolina Opera is excited to perform this amazing collection of Wagner opera in concert, not only because it will be an incredible musical feast of some of opera’s most important and beautiful music on the occasion of the bicentennial of the composer’s birth, but also because it will feature some of opera’s top talents.” said Eric Mitchko, General Director of North Carolina Opera.
With an expansive repertoire of symphonic, ensemble and operatic works, Timothy Myers has proven himself as a conductor of exceptional diversity. His recent engagements include the Beijing National Center for the Performing Arts, Opera Africa, Houston Grand Opera, the North Carolina and Milwaukee symphony orchestras, the Wolf Trap and Central City festivals, and numerous other projects spanning four continents. In 2009 Myers was appointed by Lorin Maazel as the first ever Associate Conductor of the Castleton Festival, where during his two year tenure he was entrusted with multiple symphonic and opera performances. As the Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of North Carolina Opera, Timothy is one of the youngest artistic leaders in American opera. His artistic vision has broadened the company’s repertoire to include a wider variety ranging from Handel to Glass, as well as the creation of innovative and stimulating productions of the classic repertoire. Myers has been engaged for assistant/associate positions with the New York Philharmonic, New York City Opera, London BBC Symphony, as well as principal guest conductor and artistic advisor of the Palm Beach Symphony. He has conducted the Jerusalem Symphony, American Symphony, Brooklyn Philharmonic, the opera companies of Palm Beach, Anchorage and Asheville, the Bard Festival, and Music Academy of the West.
Jay Hunter Morris began the 2012-13 season with his appearance in the principal role of Captain Ahab in Jake Heggie’s celebrated opera, Moby Dick, at San Francisco Opera. He performed in Florence as Siegmund inDie Walküre and perform with the Los Angeles Opera as Erik Die Fliegende Höllander. Mr. Morris returns to The Metropolitan Opera for revival performances of The Ring as Siegfried and continues to Glimmerglass Festival for Erik. He makes his debut at Vienna Konzerthaus under the baton of Kent Nagano for performances of Schoenberg’s Gurrelieder. Recent successes include concert performances of Tristan Tristan und Isolde at Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia Valencia and his appearance in the role of Siegfried in the Metropolitan Opera’s new production of the complete Ring Cycle which was broadcast worldwide. Mr Morris embarked on his Ring career when he covered Siegfried Siegfried and Götterdämmerung at Seattle Opera in 2009, and the following season at Los Angeles Opera. He also covered the role of Siegmund Die Walküre during LA Opera’s Ring Cycle in 2010. In 2011, he made his debut as Siegfried at San Francisco Opera with great success under the baton of Donald Runnicles. One of the hallmarks of Mr. Morris’ career is his participation in some of the most noted new work in contemporary opera. He has created many roles in world premieres, among them the role of Captain James NolanDoctor Atomic at San Francisco Opera, a role he reprised with the Netherlands Opera the following season; the role of Markyin Cronenburg’s The Fly (Howard Shore) at Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, (which he revived at Los Angeles Opera under the baton of Placido Domingo); the role of Unferth in Elliott Goldenthal and Julie Taymor’s Grendel, a performance he repeated in the 2006 Lincoln Center Festival.
Elizabeth Bishop has been praised by Opera News for her “gorgeous voice” and is in equal demand for both opera and concert performances across the country. Her 2012-13 season engagements include her first Azucena in Il trovatore with Utah Opera, her first Sieglinde in Die Walküre with North Carolina Opera, and her return to the Metropolitan Opera for Mère Marie in Dialogues des Carmélites. Her other Met roles have included Venus in Tannhäuser, the title role in Gluck’s Iphigénie en Tauride, Fenena in Nabucco, and Second Norn in the worldwide Live in HD cinecast of Götterdämmerung. Ms. Bishop sings regularly with Washington National Opera, where her roles have included Gertrude in Hamlet, Eboli in Don Carlo, and the Marquise de Merteuil in Conrad Susa’s The Dangerous Liaisons. With Washington Concert Opera she has sung Santuzza in Cavalleria Rusticana and the Princess Bouillon in Adriana Lecouvreur. She has enjoyed a long relationship with San Francisco Opera, appearing there most recently as Fricka in both Das Rheingold and Die Walküre. She has sung Waltraute in Götterdämmerung with the Dallas Opera, Mère Marie with both Deutsche Oper Berlin and Pittsburgh Opera, Eboli with the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa, Octavian in Der Rosenkavalier with Donald Runnicles and the Atlanta Symphony, Amneris in Aida with the Atlanta Opera, and Offred in Poul Ruders’s The Handmaid’s Tale with Minnesota Opera. Elizabeth Bishop has appeared as soloist with Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw Orchestra, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the National Symphony Orchestra, and the Malaysian Philharmonic.
Bass Peter Volpe continually receives critical and popular acclaim on four continents. Possessing a vast and ever-expanding repertoire of over 80 roles in six languages, his captivating style and interpretive skill embraces the depth of historical and fictional characters. Of a recentportrayal as Prince Gremin in Eugene Onegin, Opera News said he “managed to create in his single aria and scene an impressive dignity. His full-bodied bass and great candor of tone, together with his intelligent interpretation, won him a well-deserved ovation.” In the current season, performances include Ramfis in Aida at Michigan Opera Theatre, Sparafucile in Rigolettoat Manitoba Opera, Ferrando inIl Trovatoreat Arizona Opera, Zuniga in Carmen at the Florentine Opera, the bass soloist in Verdi’s Requiem with the Chattanooga Symphony, and his role debut as Daland in The Flying Dutchman with Glimmerglass Opera. In addition he will perform Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoorwith Portland Opera and Philip II in Don Carlo at Austin Lyric Opera.
The Wagner program will include the following, in the order in which they will be presented: Prelude to Die Meistersinger, “Mögst du, mein Kind” from The Flying Dutchman, “Fanget an!” from Die Meistersinger, Ride of the Valkyries from Die Walküre, “Mild und leise” from Tristan Und Isolde, Intermission and Act I of Die Walküre.
Ms. Crocetto holds degrees from Siena Heights University in acting performance and Moody Bible Institute in vocal studies. She is a former member of the Sarasota Opera Apprentice Artists Program She was a member of San Francisco Opera’s Merola Opera Program. San Francisco Chronicle said Crocetto has a “powerful Verdi voice and formidable precision technique, and intensity that amplifies an already huge voice, and an innate, irresistible musicality.” San Francisco Classical voice said, “In thirty years of exciting discoveries, listening to each group of Merolini for the first time, I have never experienced a singer as complete and awesome as Crocetto.”Tickets are $27 to $85, and are on sale now by calling the North Carolina Opera Box Office at 919-792-3850, filling out the form available at www.ncopera.orgor going to www.ticketmaster.com.
ABOUT NORTH CAROLINA OPERA
North Carolina Opera was formed in 2010 from the merger of Capital Opera Raleigh and The Opera Company of North Carolina. It is dedicated to presenting operatic performances at the highest level throughout the Triangle. We also have a robust education program that brings opera to schools across Wake County and surrounding counties. North Carolina Opera brings international level artists to Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, and also engages the best in local Triangle talent.