Opera Atelier’s 30th Anniversary Season

2015-2016 Toronto season includes internationally lauded Armide and Lucio Silla

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Toronto, ON (January 27, 2015) – Opera Atelier’s 30th Anniversary Season will celebrate the company’s status as the busiest touring opera company in North America. A new Canadian production of Mozart’s Lucio Silla (Apr. 7-16, 2016) will form the cornerstone of Opera Atelier’s anniversary season in Toronto, paired with a revival of its landmark production of Armide (Oct. 22-31, 2015). The company has secured a recurring engagement at the Palace of Versailles and will present one of its Canadian-made productions at the famed Opéra Royal every second year. Armide will return to Versailles following its Toronto run in the fall of 2015. Today’s announcement by founding artistic directors Marshall Pynkoski and Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg comes just weeks before they make their debuts at La Scala Opera House in Milan with their celebrated staging of Lucio Silla. Both operas in the 30th Anniversary Season are rarely performed works that have recently been given international profile by the artists of Opera Atelier.

For this important occasion, director Pynkoski and choreographer Zingg are proud to announce their ongoing collaboration with a group of Canadian artists whose work has helped make Opera Atelier an internationally sought-after brand. “We are privileged to have enjoyed such longstanding and fruitful partnerships with these artists, several of whom have been with the company since our first performances in 1985,” say the pair. Both productions in the 15-16 season will feature Toronto’s acclaimed Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra conducted by David Fallis, and Canadian designers Gerard Gauci (sets) and Bonnie Beecher (lighting), as well as the Artists of Atelier Ballet.

Pynkoski and Zingg’s staging of Lucio Silla created a sensation at the Salzburg Festival and Mozartwöche in 2013 and will soon appear at the La Scala Opera House in Milan (February 26 – March 17, 2015). Opera Atelier will bring this staging to Toronto audiences with a new Canadian production with brand new sets and costumes. The titular ruler will be sung by Kresimir Spicer, alongside Inga Kalna (as Cinna), Mireille Asselin (as Celia), Peggy Kriha Dye (as Cecillio) and Meghan Lindsay (as Giunia). Written by a 16-year-old Mozart, this astonishingly inventive opera seria contains some of his most memorable music for soloists, chorus and ballet. Lucio Silla will be sung in Italian with English surtitles.

Armide will reunite the cast that created Opera Atelier’s 2012 production, which enjoyed sold-out houses and critical acclaim in Toronto and Versailles. Reprising their roles as the ill-fated lovers are soprano Peggy Kriha Dye (as Armide) and tenor Colin Ainsworth (as Renaud), along with soprano Carla Huhtanen, bass-baritone Olivier Laquerre, soprano Meghan Lindsay, and tenor Aaron Ferguson. Joining the cast are Stephen Hegedus (as Hidraot) and Daniel Belcher (as La Haine & Aronte). Armide will return to the Opéra Royal at the Palace of Versailles, France (Nov. 20-22, 2015) to participate in the events commemorating 300 years since the death of Palace creator King Louis XIV. This French Baroque masterpiece by Jean-Baptiste Lully (libretto by Philippe Quinault) was first performed in 1686. Armide will be sung in French with English surtitles.

The company has recently undergone a change of leadership, with John MacKinlay of PricewaterhouseCoopers becoming chair of the12-person board of directors. National leadership partner for the Financial Services Consulting practice of PwC, MacKinlay brings his strong corporate network to Opera Atelier to complement the company’s artistic excellence with business savvy. He took over from Bryan Graham at Opera Atelier’s Annual General Meeting on November 18, 2014.

Performances for Opera Atelier’s 2015-2016 season will take place at the Elgin Theatre (189 Yonge Street) in Toronto. Armide runs October 22 (media night), 24, 25 (3:00pm), 27, 30, and 31 (4:30pm), 2015 (start times 7:30 pm except where noted). Lucio Silla runs April 7 (media night), 9, 10 (3:00pm), 12, 15, and 16 (4:30pm), 2016 (start times 7:30 pm except where noted). Subscriptions start at $95 and are on sale now by calling 416-703-3767 x222. Single tickets go on sale on August 10, 2015. For more information visit Opera Atelier’s website: http://www.operaatelier.com.

2015-2016 Major Sponsors
Season Presenting Sponsor: BMO Financial Group
Season Underwriter: Michael A. Wekerle of Difference Capital
Production Sponsor: Scotiabank

Opera Atelier gratefully acknowledges the ongoing support of The Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, and the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council.

Opera Atelier is North America’s premier period opera/ballet company, producing the opera, ballet and drama of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. While drawing upon the aesthetics and ideals of the period, Opera Atelier goes beyond “reconstruction” and infuses each production with an inventive theatricality that resonates with modern audiences. Led by founding artistic directors Marshall Pynkoski and Jeannette Lajeunesse Zingg since 1985, Opera Atelier has garnered acclaim for its performances at home as well as in the United States, Europe and Asia.

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