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July 4, 2013

100 years of music will be focus of 2014 season

The Glimmerglass Festival, Central New York’s opera and musical theater company, has announced its 2014 season.

The 2014 Festival will focus on 100 years of music and includ new productions of Puccini’s “Madame Butterfly,” Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Carousel,” Strauss’ “Ariadne in Naxos”and Tobias Picker’s “An American Tragedy.” The productions run in repertory July 11 through Aug. 24 in the Alice Busch Opera Theater in Cooperstown.

Glimmerglass Festival Artistic and General Director Francesca Zambello said she wants to remind people that the music of the last century is extremely audience friendly and that contemporary music does not have to be intimidating.

“The 2014 productions will show you how quickly we go from Puccini to Picker, all with a sense of character and story, and with inspiring melodies,” she said in a media release.

Soprano Christine Goerke will serve as the company’s 2014 artist in residence. Goerke is known for her many Strauss and Wagner roles, including Elektra, Ariadne, Brünnhilde and Senta. As artist in residence, Goerke will work closely with members of the Glimmerglass Festival Young Artists Program, the company’s apprentice program for emerging artists.

“I was a Young Artist 20 years ago at Glimmerglass, and it was my first apprentice program,” Goerke said in the release. “What this company does for young singers, you can’t begin to know ... This program is so special; this place is so special.”

“Madame Butterfly” (Giacomo Puccini/Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa, 1904) will open the season in a new production. According to the release, Puccini’s unforgettable heroine, delicate and vulnerable yet possessed of a steely resolve, risks ostracization to be with Pinkerton, a handsome American naval officer. When he proves untrue, she unflinchingly chooses the only honorable path available to her.

“Puccini is the ultimate 20th-century melodist, and the chance to see his heartbreaking work with young singers in our intimate theater is a remarkable experience,” said Zambello, who will direct the production. “The story of a young mother who hopes to find a better life for herself and her son in America is still relevant today, as we continue to wrestle with issues around immigration.”

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