‘Amahl and the Night Visitors’ renews holiday tradition at WCSU
WCSU Opera to stage 21st annual production of Menotti classic Dec. 11 & 12
DANBURY, CONN. — The Western Connecticut State University Opera will present the holiday classic “Amahl and the Night Visitors” in two performances at the university at 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 11, and at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 12, 2015.
This year’s presentation will mark the 21st annual WCSU Opera production of the English-language opera by Gian Carlo Menotti, originally commissioned for broadcast on the NBC television network in December 1951. Both performances of the one-act opera will be in Ives Concert Hall in White Hall on the university’s Midtown campus, 181 White St. in Danbury.
General admission will be $10, with ticket prices of $5 for senior citizens and children under 12. Advance reservations may be made online at www.wcsu.edu/tickets or by calling (203) 837-TIXX. Tickets also will be sold at the door.
The opera, which runs approximately 50 minutes, tells the story of an impoverished and crippled shepherd boy’s encounter with the Three Kings on their way to Bethlehem and the heart-warming outcome of their chance meeting. In notes describing his composition of the opera, Menotti explained he was inspired by his fond memories of the Three Kings as the legendary source of Christmas gifts during his childhood in Italy.
WCSU Professor of Music Dr. Margaret Astrup is the director and producer for the opera, which will feature a different cast of student and community performers for each of the two presentations. Astrup noted the WCSU Opera production celebrates “a seasonal favorite of people of all faiths that resonates a universal message of self-sacrifice and generosity. This is a captivating introduction to the art form of opera, and provides a way for children and families to be introduced to both theater and opera.”
The cast will include Christopher Owen, of Brewster, New York, and Braeden Callaghan, of Danbury, as Amahl; Nicole Salamon, of Greenwich, and Louise Carozza, of Meriden, as Amahl’s mother; Charles Widmer, of Oxford, and Matthew Johnson, of Trumbull, as Kaspar; Matthew Feinberg, of Cheshire, and Brendan Fox, of Bethel, as Melchior; Daniel Satter, of Trumbull, as Balthazar; and Samuel Cournoyer, of Seymour, as the Page.
Western Connecticut State University offers outstanding faculty in a range of quality academic programs. Our diverse university community provides students an enriching and supportive environment that takes advantage of the unique cultural offerings of Western Connecticut and New York. Our vision: To be an affordable public university with the characteristics of New England’s best small private universities.