The 2015-2016 Season

Vashon Opera's Seventh Season

In Performance: Sweetness and Spectacle

Vashon Opera’s seventh season kicks off in September with Gaetano Donizetti's The Elixir of Love, one of the world's most frequently performed operas. Cherished for its whimsical wit and endearing characters, not to mention the many intoxicating duets and "Una furtiva lagrima," one of the most hauntingly beautiful of all tenor arias, The Elixir of Love is sure to delight. This charming comedy will have you rolling in the aisles! The production features a professional cast, a chorus of Vashon singers and a stellar chamber orchestra.

Watch as Nemorino, a poor peasant in love with the beautiful and rich land owner Adina, seeks a potion that will cause Adina to fall in love with him just like in the story of Tristan and Isolde. Enter the travelling potion-peddling doctor of love: Dr. Dulcamara. He may just have the cure-all Nemorino needs if he can find the money to pay for it. This “bel canto” comedic gem shows composer Gaetano Donizetti at his finest with gorgeous melodies soaring over brilliant and joyous harmonies.

Two Vashon Opera favorites return for The Elixir of Love: Barry Johnson as Dr. Dulcamara, seen previously in the comic role as Frank in Vashon Opera's Die Fledermaus and Andrew Krikawa as Sergeant Belcore, seen as the hilarious Figaro in Vashon Opera's The Barber of Seville.

Singing the principal roles of Nemorino and Adina are two artists making their Vashon Opera debuts: Robert McPherson and Kristin Vogel. Hailed for his distinctive artistry and virtuosic technique within the bel canto literature, Mr. McPherson was recognized as a world finalist in the 5th Luciano Pavarotti International Vocal Competition. Now completing her doctorate in voice at the University of Washington, Ms. Vogel is making her mark as a performer across the US and internationally. Acclaimed for her powerful lyric voice, her intensity onstage, and her sensitive musicality, Ms. Vogel recently won 4th place in the Meistersinger Competition at the American Institute of Musical Studies (AIMS) in Graz, Austria.

The Elixir of Love shines with rousing and beautiful bel canto choruses. The chorus will be led by Vashon Opera's beloved chorusmaster, Joe Farmer. James Brown will lead the production as musical director, stage director, conductor and orchestral arranger. Mr. Brown was recently recognized by Oregon ArtsWatch as "a truly outstanding conductor" for his performances in Vashon Opera's Albert Herring.

The season continues in May with Pagliacci Palooza as Vashon Opera presents some of opera’s greatest highlights in the Palooza portion of Pagliacci Palooza! You’ll enjoy a one-of-a-kind event as the combined forces of The Vashon Island Chorale, Vashon Opera soloists and opera orchestra perform magnificent Italian opera choruses and arias in the new Vashon Center for the Arts.

Following the Palooza you’ll find yourself drawn in to the drama and realism of Ruggero Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci as the tale of a travelling troupe of actors falling apart at the edges by passion, jealousy and rage unfolds in this fully staged version.

Tonio, one of the performers, reminds us during the prologue that the commedia dell’arte actors share the same joys and sorrows as real people. Now, fast-forward to to the culminating scene as the troupe presents its show to the townsfolk. The jealous Canio (playing Pagliaccio) presses Nedda (playing Columbine) for the name of her secret lover. The townsfolk enjoy the convincing performance. But, is this the show or is this real? Will Nedda reveal the name? Can Canio contain his rage?

As Islanders have come to expect, Vashon Opera productions are presented in intimate settings where audience members are up close to the action. The seventh season promises to continue that tradition with Pagliacci Palooza marking the first of many performances to come in the new Vashon Center for the Arts.

Join us as we embark on another season of intimate opera! Come be engulfed by the fast-paced action, entranced by the exquisite music, and transformed by the power and expression of the human voice!