MADISON (WKOW) -- Madison Opera presents Charles Gounod’s Romeo & Juliet on Friday, November 4 at 8pm and Sunday, November 6 at 2:30pm in Overture Hall.
With soaring arias, impassioned scenes, and plenty of sword fights, Gounod's gorgeous opera brings the famous tragic tale of young love to vivid life.
Set in 14th century Verona, the opera follows the story of Shakespeare’s legendary star-crossed lovers. The Montague and Capulet families are caught in a centuries-old feud. One evening, Romeo Montague and his friends attend a Capulet ball in disguise. The moment Romeo spots Juliet Capulet, he falls in love, and she returns his feelings. Believing they are meant for one another, they proclaim their love, setting in motion a chain of events that will change both their families.
“Romeo and Juliet is one of the most famous love stories in Western literature,” says Kathryn Smith, MadisonOpera’s General Director.
Madison Opera’s cast features both returning artists and debuts. John Irvin and Emily Birsan return to sing the titular Romeo and Juliet. Irvin sang Count Almaviva in the 2015 production of The Barber of Seville, while Birsan returns from singing at Opera in the Park 2016 and Musetta in last season’s La Bohème. Sidney Outlaw, who sang at this past summer’s Opera in the Park, makes his mainstage debut as Romeo’s friend, Mercutio. Liam Moran, who sang Colline in last season’s La Bohème, sings Frère Laurent, who unites the two lovers in the hope of uniting their families. Allisanne Apple returns as Gertrude, Juliet’s nurse.
Making their debuts are Stephanie Lauricella as Romeo’s page, Stephano; Chris Carr as Tybalt, Juliet’s cousin; Philip Skinner as Lord Capulet; and Benjamin Sieverding as the Duke of Verona. Former MadisonOpera Studio Artist Nathaniel Hill returns as Gregorio, while current Studio Artist James Held sings the role of Paris.
Directing this traditional staging is Doug Scholz-Carlson, who directed The Barber of Seville, The Tender Land, and The Turn of the Screw for Madison Opera. Scholz-Carlson is artistic director of the Great River Shakespeare Festival and has directed the original Romeo & Juliet, among many Shakespeare plays.
Click here for ticket information.