Two-Weekend Festival (April 29, 30 & May 5, 6, 7) to Include Rossini’s Semiramide, La Cenerentola, Petite Messe Solennelle Is Added to Lineup

WILMINGTON, Del. – OPERADELAWARE, now in its 72nd season, today announced complete casting and details for its 2017 Rossini Festival, set for two consecutive weekends in late April and early May. The festival will feature two mainstage operas at The Grand Opera House in Wilmington—a fully-staged production of Rossini’s rarely-performed Semiramide on Sat. April 29 at 7:30 p.m. and Sun. May 7 at 2 p.m., as well as a production of La Cenerentola (Cinderella) Sun. April 30 at 2 p.m. and Sat. May 6 at 7:30 p.m. In addition, a performance of the Petite messe solennelle will be offered on Fri. May 5 at 7:30 p.m.

Festival tickets start at $29 and can be purchased at or by calling OPERADELAWARE’s box office at 302-442-7807. Discounts are available to those purchasing tickets to both festival operas.

Semiramide will be directed by Dean Anthony, who returns to Delaware following his successful productions of L’elisir d’amore and Falstaff with the company. Maestro Anthony Barrese, the dynamic force behind the revived operatic gem Amleto (Hamlet), will return to The Grand to conduct the OperaDelaware orchestra.

Soprano Lindsay Ohse is Semiramide, the power-hungry Babylonian Queen who murders her husband. Mezzo-soprano Aleksandra Romano is cast as Arsace, tenor Timothy Augustin is Idreno, bass Daniel Mobbs is Assur, and bass Harold Wilson is Oroe. Sets are designed by Peter Tupitza. Howard Tsvi Kaplan is the costume designer, and Driscoll Otto the lighting designer.

La Cenerentola is Rossini’s version of the classic Cinderella tale. Composed 200 years ago, glass slippers are replaced by bracelets in this captivating opera, and there’s no fairy godmother to be found. Still, there's a healthy dose of wicked stepsisters and happily-ever- after. Mezzo-soprano Megan Marino sings the title role, tenor Jack Swanson appears as Prince Ramiro, Sean Anderson and Steven Condy return to OperaDelaware as Dandini and Don Magnigico respectively. Bass Young-Bok Kim sings Alidoro, Jennifer Cherest sings Clorinda, and Alexandra Rodrick sings Tisbe. La Cenerentola will be conducted by Maestro Michael Borowitz, directed by A. Scott Parry, with sets from Seattle Opera and costumes from A.T. Jones and Sons of Baltimore. Lighting design is by Driscoll Otto.

In addition, OPERADELAWARE will present one performance of Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle, with chorus and soloists, including the original two piano and harmonium accompaniment. Maestro David Amado conducts the OperaDelaware chorus, with four soloists who are each graduates of the prestigious Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia – soprano Colleen Daly, mezzo-soprano Chrystal E. Williams, tenor William Davenport and bass Ben Wager. Wager, a local favorite, received his start as a member of the OperaDelaware chorus.

OperaDelaware’s General Director Brendan Cooke noted that the presentation of new or rarely seen operas has struck a positive chord with regional audiences.

Semiramide is highly challenging vocally, and it’s not performed often. We have a powerhouse cast that’s up to that challenge, and I think our audiences will be wowed. La Cenerentola rounds out our celebration of the 225th anniversary of Rossini’s birth with a beautiful twist on the traditional fairy tale that audiences will love. Petite messe solennelle is one of Rossini’s final works, part of his Péchés de vieillesse (sins of old age). The work is gorgeous in its richness and solemnity, and gives us some insight into what Rossini’s operas might have sounded like, had he not retired from the genre 30 years before.”

The 2016-17 season began in October, and delighted audiences with several sold-out performances at the company’s facilities on the Wilmington Riverfront.

Wilmington, Del., and the fabled Brandywine Valley are easily reached via train or car from Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, D.C. and New York City. The Grand Opera House of Wilmington is a 10-minute walk from the train station or five minutes by taxi or any ride sharing service. The area is home to the year-round Longwood Gardens, planted and landscaped originally under the DuPont family’s aegis, as well as several museums of international importance—the Brandywine River Museum (whose permanent collection includes works by three generations of Wyeths), Delaware Art Museum, Hagley Museum, Nemours Mansion & Gardens (an example of a modified Louis XVI French château designed by Carrere and Hastings) and Winterthur (America’s premier museum of American decorative arts), to name a few. In addition to the attractions of the surrounding countryside, downtown Wilmington offers first-rate restaurants, accommodations and a burgeoning wine culture.


OperaDelaware celebrates its 72nd season in 2016-2017. OperaDelaware is the nation's 11th oldest professional opera company. Our mission is to enrich the lives of people in the Mid-Atlantic region through meaningful arts education and the production of grand opera and intimate opera concerts, featuring established professional and emerging talent.

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