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UVa-Wise company to perform two children’s operas

Staff report • May 13, 2013 at 10:56 AM

BIG STONE GAP — The Southwest Virginia Opera Company of The University of Virginia’s College at Wise has announced its upcoming summer 2013 season featuring two one-act children’s operas.

Performances will be held for school audiences and the general public beginning May 31.

UVa-Wise opera students have been hard at work since February preparing Seymour Barab’s “Little Red Riding Hood” and Judith Zaimont’s “Goldilocks and the Three Bears.”

Cast as light operas, drawing at times on the sounds of American musical theater, the whimsical retellings of the classic fairy tales will appeal to audiences of all ages.

Founded in 2010, the UVa-Wise Southwest Virginia Opera Company presented its first full-length opera last year with a touring production of Aaron Copland’s “The Tender Land.”

With generous support of the C. Bascom Slemp Foundation and James Lawson Edward Jones Financial Investments, performances spanned the region.

Venues of last year’s popular performances included the Trail of the Lonesome Pine Outdoor Theatre in Big Stone Gap, the Mountain Arts Center in Prestonsburg, Ky., and the Paramount Theater in Bristol, Tenn.

“We’ve had students show up at our doorstep with the expressed desire to pursue opera in their future graduate work,” said David Volk, UVa-Wise program coordinator for music.

“One of the most rewarding endeavors at UVa-Wise has been giving these students that very opportunity as undergraduates. I know these experiences are the exact preparation they need to achieve their academic and career goals.”

The performance calendar for “Little Red Riding Hood” and “Goldilocks” is 7 p.m., May 31; 2:30 p.m., June 2; and 7 p.m., June 7 in the Black Box Theater of the UVa-Wise Gilliam Center for the Arts; 7 p.m. on June 3 at the Trail of the Lonesome Pine Outdoor Theater in Big Stone Gap; and 6:30 p.m. at MountainRose Vineyards in Wise.

In addition to those performances, the operas will be presented at UVa-Wise for Wise County public school students on June 4 and June 5.

Tickets for the performances are $5 for adults, $4 for seniors and students, and $2 for children 12 and under.

For information about tickets, contact Jessica Necessary in the UVa-Wise Department of Visual and Performing Arts, at (276) 328-0256.

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