Opera Company of Middlebury “Tosca”
Founded in 2004, Opera Company Middlebury is entering its 16th season of sold-out performances. Using a mix of Vermont talent and professional singers from across the country, it is recognized as one of the most important small opera companies in the nation. OCM performs in the jewel box 232-seat Town Hall Theater in Middlebury. In this cozy space it mounts full productions with orchestra, which explains the company’s motto, “Grand opera in an intimate setting.” It’s this combination of top-flight talent, thrilling theatricality and intimacy that has brought the company national attention, including recent articles in Opera News and the Huffington Post.
OCM mounts two productions each year, and in 2018 launched its first statewide tour.
As the only major professional opera company in Vermont, OCM has been repeatedly urged to take its extraordinary productions to towns across the state. One arts administrator actually criticized the company for not doing so. “You MUST find a way to take your shows to small towns across Vermont!” she said. “Most of them have never hosted any kind of opera, much less the quality work that you do.”
Touring is a financial and logistical challenge, but the logic of making opera available to the entire state is inescapable. Vermont is blessed with more small-town theaters per capita than any other state, and they give the company a wonderful opportunity to take opera to places it’s never been seen. So in 2018, OCM undertook a radical expansion in the mission of the company, touring Donizetti’s L’elisir d’amore to Greensboro, Randolph and Castleton University. The tour was a huge success, and it is now slated to become an annual event.
The Creative Team
Douglas Anderson (Director) founded OCM in 2004, and has since directed and designed 20 productions. Doug is also the founder of Middlebury’s Town Hall Theater, having spear-headed the 10-year, $5 million restoration and serving as executive director for ten years. Doug is now artistic director of THT, concentrating on productions and education, and has won several awards for his arts leadership in the state.
Jeffrey Rink (Guest Conductor) has been the Music Director of the Northwest Florida Symphony Orchestra and Concert Opera Boston, as well a cover conductor for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. He recently relocated to New Hampshire. This is his third production with OCM.
|Suzanne Kantorski (Tosca) is an award-winning performer who has sung leading roles in companies across the nation, most recently singing Nedda for Opera Orlando. Performances for OCM include Mimì in La bohème, Tatiana in Eugene Onegin, and an extremely moving performance in the title role in Sour Angelica. A Vermont native, Suzanne is also a collegiate educator, lecturer, and interpreter of new music. suzannekantorski.org|
|James Flora (Cavaradossi) returns to OCM for his sixth production, having starred as Nicias in Thaïs, Alfredo in La traviata, and Mitch in A Streetcar Named Desire. James sings frequently with the Metropolitan Opera Chorus, and currently lives in Reno, Nevada. jamesfloratenor.com|
|Rubin Casas (Scarpia) gave a blistering performance as Banquo in OCM’s recent Macbeth. The Texas native’s striking bass-baritone has taken him to major stages throughout the country, including the New York City Opera and the Metropolitan Opera. rubincasas.com|
Tosca premiered in Rome in 1900, and since then has become one of the most-performed operas of all time. Known for its searing drama and arching melodies, it contains three of the most famous arias ever written. At the center of the drama are three vibrant, larger-than-life characters: Tosca, a diva-like actor who is in love with painter and activist Cavaradossi, and Scarpia, the corrupt military officer who will use his power to have Tosca for himself. The opera’s depiction of the abuse of power during wartime seams sadly relevant today.
MACBETH, Verdi 2016. “Vermont’s professional regional opera company opened its beautifully heart-wrenching production of Macbeth Friday in the intimacy of Middlebury’s 230-seat Town Hall Theater. It was grand opera in your lap — an irresistible experience.” The Rutland Herald
THE MAGIC FLUTE, Mozart 2016. “A brilliantly imagined production.” The Rutland Herald
IL TRITTICO, Puccini 2017. “Powerful. Hilarious. Heartbreaking.” The Addison Independent
“The most exciting opera company in New England.” ~Linda Radtke, radio host
For more information, contact:
Douglas Anderson, Artistic Director – email@example.com
Mary Longey, Production Manager – firstname.lastname@example.org