• Press Release

MARTINIS, MANHATTANS, AND MAESTROS – LIVE THIS THURSDAY – A VIRGINIA OPERA VIRTUAL INTERACTIVE EVEN

Updated: Dec 6, 2020

Courtesy of Virginia Opera.



“Town Hall”-style online conversation with Artistic Director Adam Turner and Assistant Conductor/Chorus Master Brandon Eldredge also invites questions in open public session.

Hampton Roads, Richmond, Fairfax, VA (July 28, 2020)Virginia Opera, The Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia, invites members of the public to an informal and interactive virtual “cocktail party” conversation with both VO Artistic Director Adam Turner and Assistant Conductor/Chorus Master Brandon Eldredge. Playfully dubbed “Martinis, Manhattans, and Maestros,” participants have the choice to join in live via Facebook or YouTube on Thursday, July 30, 2020 at 5:30 p.m. (EST).


In addition to previewing Virginia Opera’s recently modified 2020-2021 “Love is a Battlefield” season, the interactive event encourages participants to ask questions, as the duo of Virginia Opera maestros host guests on the company’s Facebook and YouTube pages. The full dialogue will also be recorded and made available after July 30 on both platforms.


Virginia Opera Artistic Director, Adam Turner: “If the current circumstances present real challenges, they also present real opportunities for us to find new ways of engaging the public and audience members online. Brandon and I are very excited for this opportunity to interact with both Virginia Opera fans and newcomers alike. We’re hoping for a lively “discussion” and encourage participants to ‘drop in’ with their questions about the shows in our forthcoming season, opera, and music in general. What could be better than the chance to sit down and talk among friends over a refreshing beverage?”


Virginia Opera’s President and CEO, Russell Allen: “Maintaining connection with our audiences and communities is of paramount importance to Virginia Opera. As we navigate these unprecedented times our goal is to be a communicative as possible and to provide transparent information about our plans for the future.”


Virginia Opera 2020-2021 Production Overview

La Voix Humaine – Francis Poulenc If breaking up is hard to do, Francis Poulenc’s intimate one-act, one-soprano operatic adaptation of Jean Cocteau’s 1928 play manages to grab hold of that truth by its very soul. A young woman, a one-sided phone conversation, La Voix allows us to eavesdrop as the agony of love lost is fully illuminated in a spotlight shone on a single human heart. In her VO mainstage debut, soprano Jessica E. Jones performs the role of Elle. Sung in French with English supertitles. Gianni Schicchi – Giacomo Puccini Is true love even possible? In this case, yes—as long as you are willing to pose as a dead guy and falsify some documents to smooth the way. But, of course, when has the path of true love ever been smooth, much less with a will in the mix. Gianni Schicchi treats audiences to twists, turns and more than a few laughs along the way, and includes one of Puccini’s most beloved and breathtaking arias: “O mio babbino caro” (Google it and see!). Troy Cook sings the title role, Benjamin Werley the role of Rinuccio, and Jessica E. Jones returns to the evening’s stage to play Rinuccio’s love interest, Lauretta. Sung in Italian with English supertitles. DOUBLE BILL: Norfolk – FEB 5, 7 & 9, 2021  |  Fairfax – FEB 13 & 14, 2021  |  Richmond – FEB 19 & 21, 2021


The Marriage of Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro) – W.A. Mozart Just the kind of mad and frantic bedroom farce of which guilty (and not-so-guilty) pleasures are made. Full of scheming and wooing, flirting and folly, Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro’s joyful and absurd twists pile the truly outrageous on top of the joyfully scandalous to provide what we all wish for—the very happiest of endings. Driven by the music of Mozart at his most spirited in collaboration with his entrusted librettist, Lorenzo Da Ponte, Figaro promises captivating performances that will leave you walking on air. Figaro will welcome esteemed Stage Director Lawrence Edelson to the VO stage, just as the company welcomes back, as Count Almaviva, bass-baritone Richard Ollarsaba—Raimondo in the VO’s 2018 production of Lucia di Lammermoor. Making their VO mainstage debuts are Argentinian bass-baritone Federico De Michelis as Figaro and Vanessa Becerra as Susanna. Sung in Italian with English Supertitles.  Norfolk – MAR 12, 14 & 16, 2021   |   Fairfax – MAR 20 & 21, 2021  |  Richmond – MAR 26 & 28, 2021 


The Pirates of Penzance – W.S. Gilbert and Arthur Sullivan A young apprentice pirate with no stomach for a future of piracy is due to be released from his required service on his twenty-first birthday… Trouble is, fate might just intervene with the plan. With his newly found sweetheart, a long-winded but well-intentioned father, and a Pirate King boss with his own merry band of buccaneers, Pirates presents a timeless comedic romp. Hijinks and hilarity don’t miss a beat, and love works to win the day. Tenor David Blalock (Frederic) and soprano Jeni Houser (Mabel)—both Herndon Foundation Emerging Artists Program alumni—headline the cast for the production. Sung in English with English supertitles. Norfolk – APR 16, 18 & 20, 2021  |  Richmond – APR 23 & 25, 2020 


Subscription Information Subscription tickets for all 3 productions are on sale now for performances in Norfolk and Richmond starting as low as $56.25. Subscriptions for performances at George Mason University’s Center for the Arts will go on sale later this fall. Subscription tickets and ticket information at:


The Edythe C. and Stanley L. Harrison Opera House  Norfolk,VA 866.673.7282 vaopera.orgGeorge Mason University’s Center for the Arts Fairfax, VA  703.993.2787 cfa.gmu.eduThe Carpenter Theatre at  Dominion Energy Center  Richmond, VA  866.673.7282 vaopera.org

About Virginia Opera  Virginia Opera Association, Inc., was founded in 1974, is known and respected nationwide for the identification and presentation of the finest young artists, for the musical and dramatic integrity of its productions, and for the ingenuity and variety of its education and outreach programs. Mainstage performances in three markets across the Commonwealth reach nearly 50,000 attendees annually. In March of 1994, by unanimous vote of the Virginia General Assembly, Virginia Opera was named “The Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia” in recognition of the organization’s contribution to the state as well as to the world of opera. For tickets and information visit vaopera.org or call 866.673.7282.

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