Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Virginia Opera 2011-12

The Virginia Opera will mount its first production of Verdi's "Aïda" to open its 37th season, and will give its first performances of a work by Philip Glass: "Orphée," a jazz-inflected opera inspired by Jean Cocteau's 1949 film.

The 2011-12 season also will feature revivals of Engelbert Humperdinck's fairy tale opera "Hansel and Gretel," last staged by the Virginia Opera in 1980, and the Gilbert & Sullivan comic operetta "The Mikado," last presented by this company in 2001.

"Aïda," the most visually spectacular of the Verdi operas, will be produced in collaboration with the Richmond Ballet. Other casting and production information for the coming season, the first since Robin Thompson took over as artistic advisor to the Virginia Opera, will be announced later.

Performances will be at Norfolk's Harrison Opera House, the Carpenter Theatre of Richmond CenterStage and the Center for the Arts at George Mason University in Fairfax.

The performance schedule for 2011-12:

* "Aïda" – Oct. 1, 5, 7 and 9 in Norfolk; Oct. 14 and 16 in Fairfax; Oct. 21 and 23 in Richmond.

* "Hansel and Gretel" – Nov. 12, 16, 18 and 20 in Norfolk; Nov. 25 and 27 in Richmond; Dec. 2 and 4 in Fairfax.

* "Orphée" – Jan. 28 and Feb. 1, 3 and 5 in Norfolk; Feb. 10 and 12 in Fairfax; Feb. 17 and 19 in Richmond.

* "The Mikado" – March 10, 14, 16 and 18 in Norfolk; March 23 and 25 in Fairfax; March 30 and April 1 in Richmond.

For ticket-subscription information, Hampton Roads and Richmond patrons may call the Virginia Opera box office at (866) 673-7282; Northern Virginia patrons may call GMU's Center for the Arts at (703) 993-2787.