2011 Season Opens with Gilbert & Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore

CARAMOOR OPENS THE 2011 SEASON WITH GILBERT & SULLIVAN’S HMS PINAFORE
Katonah, NY ~ May 20, 2011
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Press Contact: Cohn Dutcher Associates
CARAMOOR INTERNATIONAL MUSIC FESTIVAL OPENS
THE 2011 SEASON WITH GILBERT & SULLIVAN’S HMS PINAFORE

JUNE 25 at 8:30 pm in the Venetian Theater

A BEL CANTO AT CARAMOOR PRODUCTION
LED BY DIRECTOR OF OPERA WILL CRUTCHFIELD

STARRING GEORGIA JARMAN, ROBERT MCPHERSON, JORELL WILLIAMS,
VANESSA CARIDDI AND SCOTT BEARDEN, WITH THE ORCHESTRA OF ST. LUKE’S

KATONAH, NY – On Saturday, June 25, at 8:30 PM, Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts kicks off its 66th Caramoor International Music Festival with a vibrant Opening Night presentation of Gilbert & Sullivan’sHMS Pinafore, one of the legendary duo’s most beloved and delightful operettas.

HMS Pinafore, which opens the festival in celebration of the 15th season of the distinguished Bel Canto at Caramoor series led by Director of Opera Will Crutchfield, stars: soprano Georgia Jarman; tenor Robert McPherson; mezzo-sopranos Vanessa Cariddi and Tynan Davis; baritones Scott Bearden, Jorell Williamsand Jason Plourde; and basses Nicholas Masters and Jeffrey Beruan. The Orchestra of St. Luke’sconducted by Crutchfield. Steven Tharpand and Paul Carey provide stage direction and costume/set design forPinafore, respectively.

Crutchfield said, “As a piece of theater, Pinafore is a cheerful satire on the arrival of modernity, bureaucracy and democratic ideals to the Royal Navy of Queen Victoria’s era. As a piece of music, it is England’s version of “bel canto” comic opera, plain and simple. That fact has been obscured by the long history of specialized Gilbert and Sullivan troupes, outside the operatic mainstream. With this production, I have the opportunity to realize my long-standing desire to present a version that does full justice to the brilliant music and the operatic vocal writing.”

PROGRAM
SATURDAY, JUNE 25 AT 8:30PM – VENETIAN THEATER
HMS PINAFORE by William S. Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan
GEORGIA JARMAN, SOPRANO (Josephine)
VANESSA CARIDDI, MEZZO-SOPRANO (Little Buttercup)
TYNAN DAVIS, MEZZO-SOPRANO (Cousin Hebe)
ROBERT MCPHERSON, TENOR (Ralph Rackstraw)
JORELL WILLIAMS, BARITONE (Captain Corcoran)
SCOTT BEARDEN, BARITONE (Dick Deadeye)
JASON PLOURDE, BARITONE (Sir Joseph Porter)
NICHOLAS MASTERS, BASS (Bill Bobstay)
JEFFREY BERUAN, BASS (Bob Becket)
Orchestra of St. Luke’s
Will Crutchfield, conductor
Steven Tharp, stage director
Paul Carey, costume and set designer

Pre-Opera Events: HMS Pinafore
During the afternoon prior to the performance, beginning at 4:30 PM, all ticket-holders can also enjoy a varied menu of lectures and recitals along with the chance to picnic in Caramoor’s famous gardens:

4:30 PM: The Lass that Loves a Sailor: The Bel Canto Young Artists present a selection of humorous and sentimental songs from the era leading up to Gilbert and Sullivan – along with some naughty Sea Chanties that give historical meaning to the idea of “swearing like a sailor.”

5:30 PM: The English Musical Stage: “Opera in England” has not usually meant “English Opera” – from the time of Handel forwards, the imported Italian variety tended to strangle English efforts in their cradle. But that does not mean no worthy efforts were made. This mini-recital by the Bel Canto Young Artists explores operatic music for the English stage from Purcell to Sullivan.

ABOUT BEL CANTO AT CARAMOOR
Under the leadership of Director of Opera Will Crutchfield, Caramoor’s renowned Bel Canto at Caramoor – an operatic exploration that The New York Times calls “an essential contribution” – begins its 15th season of outstanding opera programming during the 2011 Caramoor International Music Festival. Bel Canto at Caramoorbegan in 1997 with Rossini’s La Donna del Lago, starring Vivica Genaux, Marguerite Krull, Bruce Fowler, and Matthew Chellis. The flagship summer productions have included operas by Bellini, Rossini, Donizetti and Verdi, individual works by Handel, Gluck, Francesco Conti and Pauline Viardot, in addition to a wide range of concerts.

At its inception, diva Marilyn Horne predicted success: “These singers are very lucky to have Will Crutchfield,” she told the press before summer festival. The New York Times quickly agreed, praising “a palpable conviction that Rossini’s serious operas are not static vehicles for elaborate vocal display, but elegant and humane musical dramas” in a review of the opening. Ever since, growing ranks of critics from the national and international press have maintained that consensus, and capacity audiences have filled Caramoor’s 1714-seat Venetian Theater. Bel Canto at Caramoor productions made The New Yorker “Best Performances of the Year” lists in both 2009 and 2010, with chief classical critic Alex Ross declaring that “Under Crutchfield, Caramoor has become an operatic paradise”. In 2010, The New York Times review of Bellini’s Norma with Angela Meade proclaimed that “the future arrived” at Caramoor with Meade’s “stunning” performance; “The ovations on Saturday were tumultuous…The entire cast was fortunate to have coached this opera under Mr. Crutchfield, who has made Bel Canto at Caramoor an important workshop for fresh investigation into the practice and style of this misunderstood repertory.”

ABOUT CARAMOOR
Caramoor is a performing arts center located on a unique 90-acre setting of Italianate architecture and gardens in Westchester County, NY. It enriches the lives of its audiences through innovative and diverse musical performances of the highest quality. Its mission also includes mentoring young professional musicians and providing educational programs for young children centered around music. It is often described as “a Garden of Great Music” where audiences are invited to come early, explore the beautiful grounds, enjoy a pre-concert picnic, and discover beautiful music in the relaxed settings of the Venetian Theater, Spanish Courtyard, Music Room of the Rosen House, and the magnificent gardens.

Festival concerts take place in three venues. Two outdoor theaters – the 1714-seat, acoustically superb Venetian Theater and the more intimate, romantic Spanish Courtyard – and the Rosen House’s intimate Music Room. The historic Rosen House, built in the 1930’s, and its Music Room are “the heart of Caramoor.” Upon its completion in 1939, Caramoor founders Walter and Lucie Rosen began to present private concerts in the Music Room, and today it is used for all ‘Caramoor Indoors’ concerts and arts-in-education programs. Tours of the Rosen House by the general public are currently on hiatus as Caramoor Center for Music and the Arts has embarked on a comprehensive planning project to restructure the programs and usage of the historic Rosen House. It is Caramoor’s intention to complete this process during the next few years.

Caramoor’s gardens are also well worth the visit and include nine unique perennial gardens. Among them are a Sense Circle for the visually handicapped, a Butterfly Garden, Tapestry Hedge, and Iris and Peony Garden, which may be enjoyed on one’s own or seen on a guided tour. With its unique heritage, Caramoor is a place where magical summer days and nights are shared and enjoyed by thousands.

GETTING TO CARAMOOR
By car from the West Side of Manhattan and New Jersey, take the Saw Mill River Parkway north to Katonah. Exit at Route 35/Cross River. Turn right and, at the first traffic light, make a right turn onto Route 22 south. Travel 1.9 miles to the junction of Girdle Ridge Road. Follow the signs to Caramoor. (For detailed directions call 914.232.5035 and press 2, or online at www.caramoor.org). Parking at Caramoor is free.

By train, take the Harlem Division of the Metro-North Railroad to Katonah, New York. Taxi service from the station to Caramoor (5 minutes away) is available.

From Manhattan, take the Caramoor Caravan to Bel Canto at Caramoor opera performances, and ride comfortably in a luxurious, air-conditioned coach. The busses depart from Grand Central station at 4:00pm. Tickets are $26.00 (round-trip) and $19.00 (one-way). For information and reservations call the Caramoor Box Office at 914.232.1252.

TICKETS
Tickets for HMS. Pinafore are $81, $66, $51, $36 and $21. To purchase, call the Box Office at 914.232.1252, or visit www.caramoor.org. Groups of 16 or more may purchase discounted tickets by contacting Matthew Scarella at 914.232.5035 ext. 252 or matthew@caramoor.org.

Opening Night Gala Tickets
Tickets to the entire Opening Night gala celebration on June 25 are $2,500, $1,250, and $600, and include pre-concert cocktails, dinner, priority seating at the performance of HMS Pinafore, and an invitation to the After Darkparty. After Dark-only tickets, which only include the concert and post-concert reception, are $250. For gala information and reservations please contact events@caramoor.org, or call the Special Events office at 914.232.1492.

PRESS TICKETS
For Press tickets, contact Whitney Holden at 917.339.7188 or wholden@cohndutcher.com

DON’T MISS!
GUILLAUME TELL by Gioachino Rossini
Saturday July 9 & Friday July 15 at 7:30 PM in the Venetian Theater
Guillaume Tell is Rossini’s final opera, his masterpiece, and his most important legacy to the half-century of French and Italian grand opera that followed after its 1829 premiere. Yet due to the work’s demanding casting requirements, it is very seldom produced, and has not been heard at the Metropolitan Opera in over 75 years. Therefore, New Yorkers are offered an exceptional opportunity this summer when Caramoor presents two performances of the opera – July 9 and July 15 at 7:30 PM – with baritone Daniel Mobbs in the title role, alongside tenor Michael Spyres, soprano Julianna Di Giacomo, mezzo-soprano Vanessa Cariddi, tenor Brian Downen and soprano Talise Trevigne.

CREDITS
Performances are made possible, in part, by
ArtsWestchester with funds from Westchester County Government.

Performances are made possible with public funds from
the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.

The 2011 International Music Festival is supported in part by
an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

CARAMOOR CENTER FOR MUSIC AND THE ARTS IS LOCATED
AT 149 GIRDLE RIDGE RD, KATONAH, NY

ALL PROGRAMS AND ARTISTS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE
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