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2013 - 14 SEASON Box Office, Administration & Rehearsal Hall ARRATA OPERA CENTRE 1315 - 7 Street SW, Calgary AB T2R 1A5 Phone: 403-262-7286 | Fax: 403-263-5428 www.calgaryopera.com Calgary Opera gratefully acknowledges the support of:

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AUGUST 14 – 23, 2014 calgaryopera.com/bigtop Featured in a 900-seat tent. RiverWalk Plaza, East Village Festival site animated with roving circus performers, outdoor opera concerts, food trucks, movie nights, the Big Rock beer tent and much more.


message from the

chair

W

Welcome to tonight’s performance of Puccini’s tragic masterpiece Madame Butterfly, which brings our 2013-14 main stage season to a close. As the Chair of the Calgary Opera Board, I represent a group of volunteers who have a passion for this allencompassing art form. We believe opera has the ability to engage audiences with evenings of sweeping drama, beautiful voices, huge emotional impact and grand productions. Presenting you with a fresh new production of an all-time favourite opera is one of the ways that Calgary Opera ensures that our performances are vibrant and exciting, both for the people who have seen this piece many times before and for those of you who are seeing it for the first time. Creating and presenting opera is an expensive undertaking and is financed through many different means. For our company, the mix includes government funding (26%), private sector donations from corporations and individuals (44%), and ticket sales and other earned revenues (30%). Our new production of Madame Butterfly would not be possible without the support of many. I want to give special thanks to our production sponsor – Nexen, a wholly owned subsidiary of CNOOC Limited. Nexen has been sponsoring Calgary Opera for numerous years and if you attend other arts events in Calgary, you will see that the company is a stalwart supporter of the arts in our city. There are a number of other corporations we also wish to thank including Husky Energy, the Imperial Oil Foundation, Cenovus, Talisman Energy, Enbridge, and the others listed on page 10 of the program. Our government funders include The Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Calgary Arts Development, Canada Council

Season Sponsor

for the Arts and Canadian Heritage. And we cannot overstate the importance of donations from Individuals who share our belief in the power and magic of this wonderful art form – thank you to everyone who tops up their subscriptions with a donation, who attends our special fundraising events, and who deepens their commitment to opera by joining our Impresario Circle. Thank you one and all. Although Madame Butterfly wraps up our main stage series for the season, there is still quite a bit of opera yet to come including our Emerging Artists’ showcase production at the Arrata Opera Centre in May; the three school productions that have been created by students through our Let’s Create an Opera program at Belfast Elementary School, Our Lady of the Evergreens School, and Queen Elizabeth School in May and June; and our involvement with an international arts project for the Commonwealth Games in Scotland this July. In August I look forward to kicking off the 2014-15 opera season with our second annual Opera in the Village – Canada’s only outdoor summer opera festival – featuring eight performances of Leonard Bernstein’s Candide as well as a host of other events and festivities on the RiverWalk Plaza in East Village. I hope to see you all there! Chair, Evan J. Hazell

MADAME BUTTERFLY 7


Creation of a Classic In July of 2013, the creative team comprising

stage director Glynis Leyshon, designer Bretta Gerecke, technical director Murray Palmer and director of production Bonni Baynton Sprague met in the production offices of the Arrata Opera Centre to discuss the early concepts for a new production of Madame Butterfly. Bretta Gerecke, who has designed many sets for Calgary Opera including the world premiere of The Inventor (2011), and the updated version of Don Giovanni set in corporate Calgary (2008), has conceived a new take on the classic setting that will evoke the atmosphere of Japan in the 1800s.

“With this new production of Madame Butterfly we’re determined to provide audiences with a visually arresting approach which maintains and respects Puccini’s traditional 19th century setting and incorporates a minimal, elegant, contemporary aesthetic,” says Gerecke. “We are using iconic Japanese elements: Torii gates, shoji panels and bonsai trees in a theatrical and unconventional manner to encourage audiences to see this classic Butterfly with fresh eyes. Conceptually the ‘floating world’ of Japan’s Geisha is represented onstage with delicate screens built to frame and re-frame Butterfly’s world scene by scene. They allow the stage picture to expand and contract effortlessly framing small scale domestic scenes and wide exterior vistas.” After the equivalent of about eight weeks of construction, painting and final assembly, Madame Butterfly was ready for the stage. Once the set was finished its time at the scene shop, construction efforts were moved to the Arrata Opera Centre where each shoji screen had to be painstakingly assembled. This involved the use of a hot iron to activate the interfacing glue on each panel. By the time the screens were ready to go, Calgary Opera crew had ironed the equivalent of 1,100 t-shirts. By late March, the set, screens and flying elements had taken up residence at the Jubilee Auditorium, ready for the cast to tread its boards and bring it to life.


message from the

general director and ceo

W

Welcome to our final mainstage production of the season, Madame Butterfly. It’s been over ten years since we presented Puccini’s tragically beautiful masterpiece and I’m excited to be able to bring it to you as a new production for Calgary Opera. Bretta Gerecke, who designed Don Giovanni set in a modern corporate setting, and the world premiere of The Inventor, brings a new vision to this traditional opera. Madame Butterfly features a stellar cast with Sally Dibblee as Cio-Cio-San, David Pomeroy as Pinkerton, Daniel Okulitch as Sharpless, Thomas Glenn as Goro, and Lauren Segal as Suzuki. We are also happy to be featuring Emerging Artists Courtney V. Murias, Tyler Fitzgerald, and Aaron Dimoff. With the close of the mainstage season, Calgary Opera gears up for the Emerging Artist Showcase at the Arrata Opera Centre this May. I invite you to celebrate Benjamin Britten’s centennial with us and experience an opera that holds a unique place in the history of our art form. The Rape of Lucretia is performed by eight singers accompanied by a 12-piece chamber orchestra. Britten wanted to prove that opera can maintain all the power and ability to move in a smaller format, and in fact, could actually gain clarity in this new form. We invite you to join us for The Rape of Lucretia in the intimate space of the Arrata Opera Centre, and experience Britten as he originally intended. Once again music and laughter will fill the RiverWalk Plaza in Calgary’s East Village this summer as we present Canada’s only outdoor summer opera festival – Opera in the Village. This August we present evening performances of Leonard Bernstein’s comic masterpiece Candide and afternoon performances of a short adaptation of Hansel and Gretel especially for families. If you attended Pirates of Penzance at our inaugural festival last summer you’ll remember how wonderful it was to experience opera in a 900-seat open-air tent. For those of you who missed it

last summer, you’ve got lots of time to make plans to be here this August. We have an exciting main stage series planned for our 2014-15 season. First we have the Canadian premiere of the Pulitzer Prize winning opera Silent Night, based on the story of the impromptu Christmas truce of WWI on Christmas Eve of 1914. For our second opera, we have a new production of Mozart’s much loved The Marriage of Figaro designed by prominent Canadian designer and head of design at the Shaw Festival for 17 years, Cameron Porteous. As a perfect end to such a commanding season of opera, we present a beautiful and vibrant production of Bizet’s masterpiece Carmen. Thank you for sharing our passion for opera, and I hope to see you next season for a year of powerful stories, sweeping emotion and stunning music. General Director and CEO, W.R. (Bob) McPhee, C.M.

MADAME BUTTERFLY 9


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10 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON

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Tickets: $65 California Wine Fair 2014 Hotel Arts - 119 12 Ave SW Wednesday, April 23rd 7pm - 9:30pm For tickets, call 403-262-7286 or visit calgaryopera.com MADAME BUTTERFLY 11


Setting the Stage MadamE Butterfly, after a disastrous premiere in 1904, has gone on to establish itself as one of opera’s most beloved works. Audiences everywhere have embraced Puccini’s remarkable heroine and the story of her betrayal at the hands of her feckless American ‘husband’ plays a central part of today’s operatic repertoire. Consequently, the story of Cio-Cio-San has been treated to an enormous variety of production concepts – from the overtly sentimental to politically charged anti-American polemic. Visually, however, most productions have followed the lead of the original production and provided a ‘naturalistic’ setting for the opera. Photos of the original Milanese production reveal a highly decorative and detailed rendering, in true early 20th century ‘japonisme’ style, of Butterfly’s fragile house on a hill overlooking Nagasaki harbour. Determined to provide audiences with a visually arresting approach to this beloved classic, this Calgary Opera production maintains Puccini’s traditional 19th century setting while incorporating an elegant aesthetic that is both contemporary and minimalist. Iconic Japanese elements like torii gates, shoji panels and bonsai trees are referenced throughout the opera. Yet these iconic elements are used in a theatrically satisfying and unconventional manner, stimulating audiences to see a beloved classic with fresh eyes. The ‘floating world’ of Japan’s Geisha, the ‘Ukiyo-e’ that encouraged an attitude of ‘living only for the moment,’ is coupled in the opera with the turbulent years of the Meiji Period, when Japan was first opened to the West. The character of Butterfly, clearly the musical and theatrical centre of the opera, is tragically caught between the ancient traditions of her Samurai ancestors and the brutal realities of a Japan chaotically open to the brash West, embodied by Pinkerton.

12 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON


program notes This clash of cultures lies at the emotional heart of this new production. In this production the Bonze is not just a theatrical oddity but a powerful Shinto priest, shunning Butterfly and isolating her from everything that gave her life meaning. This production strives to lay the powerful, unsentimental story of a young girl caught between two worlds, between east and west. The power of this dilemma is as modern as today’s headline and we hope that it will inspire audiences to fall in love with Butterfly all over again.

Opera production. Within that brief however, was a strong desire to bring a visually intelligent approach to this quintessential east meets west story. We did not attempt to recreate a set filled with the innate heaviness of Italianate japonisme but rather challenged ourselves to provide a satisfyingly spare rendering of the ethereal floating world of Ukiyo-e. We hope to tell, with beauty and power, the story of an achingly young woman who ultimately finds herself reunited with her anime (ancestors) in the honourable act of ritual suicide.

Respecting the original vision of Puccini and his partners Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica was an important part of the creative evolution of this new Calgary

Stage Director Glynis Leyshon

Puccini wrote the opera Madame Butterfly after seeing the one-act play Madame Butterfly: A Tragedy of Japan, in London in the summer of 1900. The play was based in part on the short story “Madame Butterfly” (1898) by John Luther Long – which in turn was based partially on stories told to Long by his sister and partially on the semi-autobiographical 1887 French novel, Madame Chrysanthème. We know of the naval officer who was for a time married to a geisha while stationed in Nagasaki, Japan, but what do we know of the young geisha? A recently published book of historical fiction by Japanese author Ichikawa Shinishi, sheds light on the life of the real Chocho-San before she became Madame Butterfly and of a Calgary connection to this operatic icon. Shinishi’s book (which was made into a movie), titled Chocho-San, “Madam Butterfly,” reveals the heartwarming story of a Japanese girl destined for a path of prostitution and the man who was instrumental in changing the course of her life. The man was Sohichi Obiya, born in Nagasaki, Japan in 1847; big in stature and in heart. The story goes that a childhood friend of

The Butterfly Connection Chocho’s, who was in love with her, was an employee of Mr. Obiya and asked for his help to save her from being sold as a prostitute. Mr. Obiya helped Chocho by making arrangements for her to be taken to a geisha house and trained. She flourished as a geisha and went on to attend functions where she met higher class people. Sohichi Obiya, as it turns out, was the great grandfather of Emily Faltous, who lives here in Calgary with her husband, Bahaa Faltous. Ms. Faltous was also born in Nagasaki, but came to Canada (Ottawa) in 1974 and then to Calgary in 1980. Neither Emily, nor her family in Japan, knew of this account of Sohichi Obiya and the young geisha until the release of the 2008 book. Only then did she learn of her great grandfather’s generous gesture and of her own unique connection to Puccini’s Madame Butterfly.

MADAME BUTTERFLY 13


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by Giacomo Puccini

Conductor | Joseph Mechavich Stage Director | Glynis Leyshon Set & Properties Designer | Bretta Gerecke Costume Designer | Susan Benson Lighting Designer | Harry Frehner Costumes provided by the Canadian Opera Company

CAST LISTED IN ORDER OF VOCAL APPEARANCE

Cio-Cio-San | Sally Dibblee Pinkerton | David Pomeroy Suzuki | Lauren Segal Sharpless | Daniel Okulitch Goro | Thomas Glenn Yamadori/The Bonze | Tyler Fitzgerald* Imperial Commissioner | Aaron Dimoff* Kate Pinkerton | Courtney V. Murias* Sorrow | Annabel Beames, Kash Hill (alternating) Cast subject to change

Calgary Opera Chorus Chorus Director | Sandra Atkinson Accompanied by the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra Repetiteur | Christopher Mokrzewski Chorus Repetiteur | Amy Glenn Opera Titles Furnished by | Aria Nuova Presentations Stage Manager | Donna Sharpe Assistant Stage Manager | Nicole Bergen Assistant Stage Manager | Lisa Russell Head Scenic Carpenter | John Bouman Head Scenic Painter | Louis Beaudoin Head of Wardrobe | Heather Moore Head Make-Up Artist | Rose Gurevitch Head Wig & Hair Artist | Franca Vaccaro Head of Props | Laura Anderson Titles Operator | John Bouz

Production sponsor

Calgary Opera is proud to work with the professional stage hands and artisans provided by IATSE Local 212 *Member of 2013-14 Emerging Artist Program MADAME BUTTERFLY 15


ACT I Nagasaki, Japan, Turn of the Twentieth Century On a terrace above Nagasaki harbor, U.S. Navy Lieutenant B. F. Pinkerton inspects the house he has leased from a marriage broker, Goro, who has just procured him three servants and a geisha wife, Cio-Cio-San, known as Madame Butterfly. To the American consul, Sharpless, who arrives breathless from climbing the hill, Pinkerton describes the carefree philosophy of a sailor roaming the world in search of pleasure. At the moment, he is enchanted with the fragile Cio-Cio-San, but his 999year marriage contract contains a monthly renewal option. When Sharpless warns that the girl may not take her vows so lightly, Pinkerton brushes aside such scruples, saying he will one day marry a “real” American wife. Cio-Cio-San is heard in the distance joyously singing of her wedding. Entering surrounded by friends, she tells Pinkerton how, when her family fell on hard times, she had to earn her living as a geisha. Her relatives bustle in, noisily expressing their opinions on the marriage. In a quiet moment, Cio-Cio-San shows her bridegroom her few earthly treasures and tells him of her intention to embrace his Christian faith. The Imperial Commissioner performs the wedding ceremony, and the guests toast the couple. The celebration is interrupted by Cio-Cio-San’s uncle, a Shinto priest, who bursts in, cursing the girl for having renounced her ancestors’ religion. Pinkerton angrily sends the guests away. Alone with Cio-Cio-San in the moonlit garden, he dries her tears, and she joins him in singing of their love.

16 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON


synopsis ACT II

ACT III

Three years later

As dawn breaks, Suzuki insists that Cio-Cio-San rest. Humming a lullaby to her child, she carries him to another room. Before long, Sharpless enters with Pinkerton, followed by Kate, his new wife. When Suzuki realizes who the American woman is, she collapses in despair but agrees to aid in breaking the news to her mistress. Pinkerton, seized with remorse, bids an anguished farewell to the scene of his former happiness, then rushes away. When Cio-Cio-San comes forth expecting to find him, she finds Kate instead. Guessing the truth, the shattered Cio-Cio-San agrees to give up her child if his father will return for him. Then, sending even Suzuki away, she takes out the sword with which her father committed suicide and bows before a statue of Buddha, choosing to die with honour rather than live in disgrace. As she raises the blade, Suzuki pushes the child into the room. Sobbing farewell, CioCio-San sends him into the garden to play, then stabs herself. As she dies, Pinkerton is heard calling her name.

Cio-Cio-san waits for her husband’s return. As Suzuki prays to her gods for aid, her mistress stands by the doorway with her eyes fixed on the harbour. When the maid shows her how little money is left, Cio-Cio-San urges her to have faith: one fine day Pinkerton’s ship will appear on the horizon. Sharpless brings a letter from the lieutenant, but before he can read it to Cio-Cio-San, Goro comes with a suitor, the wealthy Prince Yamadori. The girl dismisses both marriage broker and prince, insisting her American husband has not deserted her. When they are alone, Sharpless again starts to read the letter and suggests Pinkerton may not return. Cio-Cio-San proudly carries forth her child, Dolore (Sorrow), saying that as soon as Pinkerton knows he has a son he surely will come back; if he does not, she would rather die than return to her former life. Moved by her devotion, Sharpless leaves, without having revealed the full contents of the letter. Cio-Cio-San, on the point of despair, hears a cannon report; seizing a spyglass, she discovers Pinkerton’s ship entering the harbour. Now delirious with joy, she orders Suzuki to help her fill the house with flowers. As night falls, Cio-Cio-San, Suzuki and the child begin their vigil.

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biographies Joseph Mechavich

Bretta Gerecke

Conductor

Set & Properties Designer

Regarded as a conductor of authority and warmth, Joseph Mechavich is known for his exceptional artistry and infectious energy. Maestro Mechavich presided over Jake Heggie’s highly acclaimed opera Moby-Dick, for both San Diego Opera and Calgary Opera as well as productions of Il barbiere di Siviglia (The Washington National Opera), Porgy and Bess (Deutsche Oper Berlin) and Roméo et Juliette (Florida Grand Opera). Engagements for the 2013-14 season include La bohème (Kentucky Opera), L’Incoronazione di Poppea (New England Conservatory of Music), Tosca (Dayton Opera) and La traviata (The Florentine Opera). Upcoming engagements include A Street Car Named Desire (Kentucky Opera), Die Zauberflöte (Opera Colorado) and a return to Calgary Opera for the Canadian premiere of Silent Night.

Glynis Leyshon Stage Director

Glynis Leyshon, former Artistic Director of the Vancouver Playhouse and Victoria’s Belfry Theatre, has directed for theatre and opera companies across the country. Productions include The Devil’s Disciple and Lady Be Good for the Shaw Festival, Falstaff and Le Nozze di Figaro for Opera Lyra Ottawa and Rigoletto and Albert Herring for Vancouver Opera. Her many productions for Pacific Opera Victoria include Der fliegende Holländer, The Rake’s Progress, The Magic Flute and Vanessa. For Alberta Theatre Projects she most recently directed The Wizard of Oz while Die Fledermaus took her to Opera Hamilton. This summer she will direct Comedy of Errors for Theatre Calgary. Her last productions for Calgary Opera were La Traviata (2013) and Don Giovanni (2008). 18 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON

Bretta is thrilled to be back working with Calgary Opera. Bretta graduated from the University of Manitoba with a Bachelor of Interior Design in 1992, and from the University of Alberta with a Master of Fine Arts in Theatre Design in 1996. She works across Canada and in the UK as a designer for Theatre and Opera. Bretta is the resident designer at Catalyst Theatre, where she has designed world premieres, which have toured internationally to Great Britain, Australia, and the U.S. and across Canada. Bretta also works at The Citadel Theatre, Canadian Stage, Edmonton Opera, Pacific Opera, Theatre Calgary, The Banff Centre and Factory Theatre. She is the recipient of many awards for set lighting and costume design, and enjoys running marathons. Madame Butterfly is for Nick.

Harry Frehner Lighting Designer

Harry Frehner has designed more than 50 productions for Calgary Opera dating back to 1992. In the past seven years, six of these productions have been nominated for Betty Mitchell Awards, of which two have won. He has lit productions for opera companies in Canada such as Edmonton Opera, Opera Lyra Ottawa, Vancouver Opera, Opera Ontario, Manitoba Opera and Pacific Opera Victoria. In the US he has lit productions for San Diego Opera, Opera Colorado, Arizona Opera, and Utah Opera. As well, his work has been seen across the country at such companies as The Banff Centre, Theatre Calgary, Alberta Theatre Projects, Decidedly Jazz Danceworks, Royal Winnipeg Ballet, Stratford and Shaw Festivals, Ballet BC and Neptune Theatre.


Cast listed in order of appearance

Sally Dibblee

David Pomeroy

Soprano

Tenor

Cio-Cio-San

Pinkerton

Soprano Sally Dibblee, critically acclaimed as a “tour-de-force of vocal control and expressive flexibility,” enjoys success on stages and concert halls throughout North America. Last season’s engagements included the role debuts of Lady Billows in Albert Herring with Pacific Opera Victoria and the title role in The Merry Widow with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra and as soloist in A Sea Symphony by R. Vaughn Williams with the Flint Symphony. Upcoming engagements include a return to Vancouver Opera as Lady Billows and soprano soloist in Beethoven 9 with Symphony New Brunswick. She was last with Calgary Opera for I Pagliacci/Gianni Schicchi (2011).

Newfoundland native David Pomeroy made his Metropolitan Opera debut in the title role of Les Contes d’Hoffmann opposite Anna Netrebko under the baton of James Levine. He had previously sung the role of Faust at “MET in the Parks” performing the title again at the MET last season. Other credits include La Traviata in Vancouver and NYC Opera; Carmen in Ottawa, Ireland, Stuttgart, Victoria, Winnipeg, Vancouver, Philadelphia and Kansas City; Madama Butterfly in St. Louis, Kansas City, Fort Worth, Connecticut, Detroit, Toronto, and Quebec; Tosca in Vancouver, Ottawa and Montreal; and Rigoletto in Kansas City, Calgary, Winnipeg and Montreal. Canadian Opera Company appearances include Pinkerton, Rodolfo, Faust, Hoffmann, Alfred. He was last with Calgary Opera for The Flying Dutchman (2014).

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biographies Lauren Segal

Daniel Okulitch

Mezzo-Soprano

Bass-Baritone

Suzuki

Sharpless

South African-Canadian MezzoSoprano Lauren Segal is quickly establishing herself as a young singer to watch. Critics praise her tone for its “gleaming, luscious timbre” (La Scena Musicale) and her operatic interpretations as “absolutely sensational” (Paula Citron), and “alluring, sexy, her voice rich in nuance” (Opera Magazine). Highlighted regularly during her time with the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio, Ms. Segal recently returned to the company in a critically acclaimed performance as The Muse/Nicklausse in Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann. Further highlights of this season include Mozart’s Coronation Mass with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and Meg in Verdi’s Falstaff with L’Opéra de Montréal. Ms. Segal was last with Calgary Opera for our school tour of Turtle Wakes in 2005.

22 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON

Canadian Bass-baritone Daniel Okulitch’s career first garnered national attention as Schaunard in the original cast of Baz Luhrmann’s Tony award winning Broadway production of La Bohème, and has since been established as a leading singer and dramatic interpreter in a wide variety of repertoire. In opera, Mr. Okulitch has garnered acclaim in major baritone roles of Mozart, most notably Don Giovanni, and The Marriage of Figaro, which have been seen in New York, Buenos Aires, Los Angeles, Palm Beach, Warsaw, Vancouver, Dallas, Portland, Detroit, Hawaii, Hamilton, and Belle Ile en Mer. He recently starred in the world premiere of the opera Brokeback Mountain in Madrid. Mr. Okulitch was last with Calgary Opera for Little Women (2010).


Thomas Glenn

Tyler Fitzgerald

Tenor

Bass-baritone

Goro

Yamadori/The Bonze

Tenor Thomas Glenn has performed at the San Francisco Opera, The Metropolitan Opera, The Lyric Opera of Chicago, Netherlands Opera and The English National Opera among others. His roles include Ferrando in Così fan tutte and the title role in La Clemenza di Tito, as well as Italian bel canto roles such as Nemorino in L’elisir d’amore, Count Almaviva in Il Barbiere di Siviglia and Tebaldo in I Capuleti e I Montecchi. He equally has a great love of Twentieth Century operas, particularly those of Britten, Stravinsky and Janácek. He frequently performs with the Atlanta Symphony as well as orchestras like The Cleveland Orchestra, the National Arts Centre Orchestra of Canada, San Francisco Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Colorado Symphony, Berkeley Symphony, Marin Symphony, and Santa Rosa Symphony.

Originally from Nanaimo, British Columbia, Bass-Baritone Tyler Fitzgerald is currently in his second year of Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Program, and completed a Bachelor’s degree in music at Wilfrid Laurier University in 2011. Recent concert and operatic performances include: Tarquinius in The Rape of Lucretia, The Father in Hansel and Gretel, Marquis d’Obigny in La Traviata, Don Inigo Gomez in Ravel’s L’Heure espagnol, Count Gill in WolfFerrari’s Il Segreto di Susanna, baritone soloist in Carmina Burana and Handel’s Messiah, Count Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro, Papageno in Die Zauberflöte, Pistola in Falstaff, Jimmy in Mahagonny Songspiel, Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas, King Melchoir in Amahl and the Night Visitors, and Le Marquis in Dialogues des Carmélites.

403-246-2999 or morpheustheatre.ca

MADAME BUTTERFLY 23


biographies Aaron Dimoff Bass-baritone

Imperial Commissioner Born in Ontario, Aaron Dimoff recently completed his Masters of Music degree at the University of Western Ontario under the mentorship of Canadian Baritone Theodore Baerg. Past performances include Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Così Fan Tutte, Frank in Strauss’ Die Fledermaus, Dr. Bartolo in Le Nozze di Figaro, Seneca in L’incoronozione di Poppea, and Il Commendatore in Don Giovanni. He is frequently heard performing the Requiems of Fauré, Brahms, and Duruflé, as well as Handel’s Messiah. As a recent winner of the Zack Scholarship Competition, he had the pleasure of performing in Opera Hamilton’s annual Popera concert. Mr. Dimoff is thrilled for the opportunity to be in Calgary as part of the 2013-14 Emerging Artists.

24 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON

Courtney V. Murias Mezzo-Soprano

Kate Pinkerton

As a young professional singer, Courtney V. Murias reaches out to others through her artistry and fearless nature. She has returned to her hometown Calgary and is thrilled to be singing in the Emerging Artist Program. During her vocal training at University of Lethbridge (BMus) and Western University (MMus) she performed the roles of Cherubino, Dido, and Ottone before moving to Toronto to sing with the chorus of the Canadian Opera Company. She last performed as Hansel in the Emerging Artist School Tour and next performs the powerful and tragic role of Lucretia in the Emerging Artist Showcase in May 2014.


Donna Sharpe

LISA RUSSELL

Stage Manager

Assistant Stage Manager

Donna Sharpe enjoys working in both theatre and opera, and appreciates the opportunities this work brings to her life. In her 12th season with Calgary Opera, the highlight of summer 2013 was stage managing The Pirates of Penzance in Calgary’s East Village with some of Canada’s finest performers. Other selected Calgary Opera credits include Aida, MobyDick, La Bohème, Pagliacci/Gianni Schicchi, as well as assistant stage managing Don Giovanni, Little Women, Barber of Seville, Ariadne auf Naxos, Faust, Tosca, Rigoletto, Frobisher, Dead Man Walking, and Sweeney Todd. Ms. Sharpe enjoys working with young artists and has stage-managed with Green Mountain Opera Festival (Vermont), Opera on the Avalon (Newfoundland), and the 2010 Winter Olympics (Whistler).

Nicole Bergen Assistant Stage Manager

Nicole Bergen works as a stage manager and assistant stage manager in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Past shows include Carmen, The Marriage of Figaro, and Don Pasquale (SM, Saskatoon Opera), La Traviata, La bohème, Moby-Dick, Aida, Lucia di Lammermoor, Manon, and The Barber of Seville (ASM, Calgary Opera), and Little Women, Turn of the Screw and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (ASM, The Banff Centre). This season’s shows include The Italian Girl in Algiers, The Flying Dutchman, and Madame Butterfly (ASM, Calgary Opera) and The Magic Flute (SM, Saskatoon Opera). She also reads a lot and widely, walks a lot, and loves to cook.

Lisa Russell has worked in dance, theatre and musical theatre across Canada and is thrilled to be working on her first opera with Calgary Opera. Selected theatre credits include: Les Misérables, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (Western Canada Theatre), Becky’s New Car, Shangri-La, O.C.Dean, Pride and Prejudice, Shout Sister, Robin Hood and A Doll’s House (Globe Theatre), Souvenirs, The December Man and Steel Kiss (Green Thumb Theatre), Doubt, A Parable (Theatre Calgary/ Manitoba Theatre Centre). Ms. Russell was the production stage manager for the Summer Arts Festival at The Banff Centre for four years and spent seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. Originally from Calgary, Ms. Russell now makes her home in Regina. She is the recipient of two Tyrone Guthrie Awards from the Stratford Festival.

Audience Survey – Spring 2014 Your opinion is important to us, and will help shape future Calgary Opera seasons. Please take a moment to scan the QR code with your smartphone. You can also find the link to our survey by visiting calgaryopera.com or our Facebook page. Two lucky participants will win two tickets to each of next season’s Sunday Opera Brunches and Taste of the Opera events.


A Partnership with

Scottish Opera for the 2014 Commonwealth Games

Anamchara* Songs of Friendship The Education Department of Scottish Opera has been working since 2010 on commissioning and producing a new music theatre piece to celebrate Glasgow’s hosting of the 2014 Commonwealth Games with five partner countries: Tehelka Foundation (India) Calgary Opera (Canada) New Zealand Opera (New Zealand) Cape Town Opera (South Africa) The Maitisong Festival/ Botswana Education Department (Botswana) The new commission will have an international cast (two artists from each of the five partner companies) with young professional singers and instrumentalists from the partner companies. The performances will be accompanied by Scottish Opera’s own youth chorus and orchestra – the Connect Company. The chorus will be supported by a community chorus group of adults and children formed from Commonwealth countries’ nationals living, working and studying in Glasgow. The piece has been written by Alexander McCall Smith and composed by Pippa Murphy (Scottish Opera). In February of 2013 four artists from Scottish Opera came to Calgary for one week to work creatively in Calgary Schools and with other local arts groups. Their goal was to gather images, create songs, and

write poetry about Canada, with the students. They held similar workshops in the other partner countries. The material generated by the young people in all six countries was then passed on to the composer, writer and set designer in Glasgow. Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Alumni Jennifer Sproule and Ben Covey will represent Canada in the project. They arrive in Glasgow on July 5th to begin rehearsals. Calgary Opera chose local director Col Cseke as a Creative Consultant on the project and he will be part of the artistic team in Glasgow beginning July 30th. Col works with our Let’s Create an Opera in-schools program. His involvement in the project will allow for enrichment to our own methodologies while working creatively with students in Calgary schools. Performance Dates: July 24-27, 2014 in Glasgow, Scotland, at The Royal Theatre *Anamchara is a version of an Irish Gaelic word that means ‘soul friend’. MADAME BUTTERFLY 27


The actors at the jube aren’t pixels – they’re real and they’re right in front of you. Here are just a few tips on how to make your night stand out.

1 Skip the lines at intermission! Pre-order your refreshments at any of our concessions. 2 Pump up the volume and zoom into the action! Ask about infrared listening devices and binoculars at Patron Services. 3 Get a room! Organizing a group outing? Talk to our staff

about renting out a luxury suite. It comes stocked with food, drinks and its own bartender. Not to mention its very own washroom!

Giving Props...

Check out our new website at jubileeauditorium.com!

The Jube is proud to have Calgary Opera as one of its Resident Companies. With over four decades of stellar performances, Calgary Opera is committed to producing opera of the highest possible calibre and making their productions as accessible as possible in the community.


calgary philharmonic orchestra Music Director Roberto Minczuk FIRST VIOLINS

Diana Cohen - Concertmaster John Lowry - Associate Concertmaster Donovan Seidle - Assistant Concertmaster Janice Amsel Kathryn Stewart Corvino Hyewon Kim Olga Kotova Theresa Kraucunas Minnie Min Kyung Kwon Bonnie Louie Robert Penner Laura Reid

SECOND VIOLINS

Lorna Tsai * Stephanie Soltice-Johnson ** Judy Bessel Adriana Bishop Jeremy Gabbert Craig Hutchenreuther Theresa Lane Lenora Leggatt Steven J. Lubiarz Richard Van de Geer

VIOLaS

John Thompson * Marcin Swoboda ** Arthur Bachmann Peter Blake Carl Boychuk Michael Bursey Katerina Grigoriu Julie Westgate

CELLI

Philip Hansen * Rafael Hoekman Joan Kent Thomas Megee Tom Mirhady David Morrissey Karen Youngquist

BASSES

Charles Garrett * Sheila Garrett ** Patricia Bereti Reid Matthew Heller Graeme Mudd Patrick Staples

FLUTES

Sara Hahn * Gwen Klassen **

PICCOLO

OBOES

Jean Landa * David Sussman **

ENGLISH HORN David Sussman

** Assistant Principal

Supernumeraries Chris Baker Pedro Guerra Zuniga John Holmes David Ng

*** Associate Principal

Special Thanks Alberta Ballet Edmonton Opera

30 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON

Michael Eastep *

TIMPANI

Alex Cohen *

PERCUSSION

CLARINETS

Tim Rawlings *

Steve Amsel * Jocelyn Colquhoun **

BASSOONS

Christopher Sales * Michael Hope **

HARP

Tisha Murvihill *

LIBRARIAN Rob Grewcock

HORNS

Robert McCosh * Jennifer Frank-Umana *** William Hopson ** Laurie Matiation ** Heather Wootton **

TRUMPETS

Adam Zinatelli * Howard Engstrom **†

TROMBONES

James Scott * Michael Thomson **

BASS TROMBONE David Reid *

Gwen Klassen

* Principal

TUBA

† Principal Emeritus

Leave of Absence

Extra Musicians: Eva Sztrain, violin Kathy Lapp, violin Diane Valentine, violin Laura Tanod, cello Sarah Gieck, flute/piccolo Heather Schienbein, flute Heather Haydu, English horn Stan Climie, bass clarinet Richard Scholz, trumpet Kyle Eustace, timpani Malcolm Lim, percussion


calgary opera chorus SOPRANOS

Anna Casurella Carolyn Dahl Rees Val Hudson Melissa Jackson Jordan Macdonald Carlyn Miller Karen Shippey-Heilman Joni Unger

Mezzo-Sopranos Nadine Cornelius Gail Ingelson Eswina Ngai Cathy Robinson Tania Sablatash* Laura Styler Julie Thompson Rosemary Van Dyk

TENORS

Réjean Campbell Don Edie Michael Hardcastle Ned Leavitt Troy Lewis Thomas McDonald JT Steenkamp Al Weller

*Appearing by courtesy of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association

The Calgary Opera program is published four times per year by Playhouse Publications Ltd. The contents of The Calgary Opera program may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the written permission of the publisher. All rights reserved by Playhouse Publications Ltd.

Inquiries should be made to: Playhouse Publications Ltd. 10177 - 105 Street, Edmonton, Alberta T5J 1E2 Ph: 780-423-5834 • Fax: 780-413-6185 • www.playhousepublications.ca PLAYHOUSE PUBLICATIONS LTD. President & Publisher: Rob Suggitt Art Director & Designer: Christine Kucher Advertising Sales: Barry Powis, Kerry Duperron Administration: Suzanne Peacock The Calgary Opera program is a product of Playhouse Publications Ltd., an affiliate of Suggitt Publishers. President & CEO: Tom Suggitt • President & CFO: Rob Suggitt PUBLISHERS

Suggitt

Suggitt PUBLISHERS

MADAME BUTTERFLY 31


emerging artists As the season nears its end,

Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist ensemble prepares to present their showcase performance of The Rape of Lucretia. What began as a vocal performance with minimal staging, costumes and sets in the early years of the Emerging Artist Development Program has blossomed into a presentation that our young artists see as a great learning experience on a professional level. A secondary benefit of the Emerging Artist Showcase is that it allows Calgary Opera to present productions like Benjamin Britten’s The Rape of Lucretia, which it might not otherwise be able to. Courtney V. Murias and Alexandra Beley alternate performances in the role of Lucretia in The Rape of Lucretia, a character that each one is excited to make their own.

Adopt an Artist patrons Terence & Judith Dalgleish Monica Sloan & John Evison Andrea Brussa & David Lyons Marian Williams

We acknowledge the generous support of the Dr. R.G. (Bud) Williams Emerging Artist Scholarship Fund

32 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON

Here’s what one of our Lucretias has to say about the production... “Performing this role for me is really bringing me full circle in my education as a professional opera singer,” says Murias. “When I was visiting McGill University I saw a production of The Rape of Lucretia and it blew me away. All I could think was that I wanted to be in that role.” For Murias, singing Britten is a completely new challenge. The structure, music and language are quite different than that of traditional Italian and French operas. “You study and get used to the rules that make up the foundations of classical music. Britten was treading new ground, and breaking old rules with this work, so when you’re preparing for Britten, you need to go beyond what you’ve learned. That’s why it’s a challenge, but also invigorating,” says Murias. Supported by Emerging Artist Development Program Sponsored by


Santa Barbara

Nov 5-8, 2014

The presentation of The Rape of Lucretia also celebrates Benjamin Britten’s centennial, a composer who championed the cause of new opera in his own native language of English. “We’re celebrating the 100 anniversary of one of the most important composers in the history of English music,” says Mel Kirby, Coordinator of the Emerging Artist Development Program. “It is a stimulating and important piece that extends and diversifies the range of works that Calgary Opera can introduce to audiences in our city.” th

Raffle Prize Includes: • $1,000 airfare voucher with Air Canada. • A three-night stay for two at the Upham Hotel in downtown Santa Barbara complete with complimentary continental breakfast, afternoon wine and cheese, and Oreos and milk in the evening. • VIP tickets to Opera Santa Barbara opening night performance November 7th, including the pre-show Gala Dinner, VIP intermission and post-show party. • Dinner for two at Tre Lune Restorante, Montecito. • $100 Gift Card to Olio e Limone, Santa Barbara. • Private Tour of Montecito’s famed Lotusland, a spectacular 37-acre Botanical Garden of exotic plants built in the 1940’s by Madame Ganna Walska, a well-known Polish opera singer and socialite. • Tour of Santa Ynez Wine Country, known for some of California’s best vintages. Prize value: $3,300 Draw Date: April 30, 2014 at Arrata Opera Centre 1315 – 7th St. SW

The Rape of Lucretia runs May 2, 4, 6 & 8, 2014 at the Arrata Opera Centre.

Prize must be accepted as awarded Tickets $20 each (500 tickets printed)

Tickets on sale tonight in the lobby!

Tickets: $37 Call 403-262-7286 or visit calgaryopera.com MADAME BUTTERFLY 33


corporate and community support Community Supporters

Alberta Community Development Alberta Foundation for the Arts Alberta Lottery Fund Calgary Arts Development Canada Council for the Arts Canadian Heritage Southern Alberta Opera Development Foundation

Education Sponsor Talisman Energy

Community Outreach Sponsors Cenovus Energy

Season Sponsor Husky Energy

Emerging Artist Development Program Sponsor Enbridge

Mainstage Media Sponsor The Calgary Herald

Performance & Program Supporters

BMO Financial Group KPMG McLeod Law LLP Nexen PCL Construction Management Inc. RBC Financial Group through RBC Foundation Sun Life Financial

Corporate Donors

Canadian Natural Resources FirstEnergy

Opera in the Village Presenting sponsor

Opera in the Village supporters The Remarkable Experience Accelerator Program - Calgary Hotel Association and Calgary Arts Development Authority The City of Calgary’s Event Stimulus Program Tourism Calgary Province of Alberta Alberta Tourism CMLC

Festival Founders FRAM + Slokker Embassy BOSA Cenovus Big Rock Brewery

Media Sponsors

Global Calgary Jack FM Lite 96 660 News Up! 97.7 Pattison Outdoor Playhouse Publications Swerve

Individual Donors Naming Benefactor Arrata Opera Centre Said Arrata

Major Gift Donors

The late F. Richard Matthews The Pyke Family

Voce Eterna Future Fund

We acknowledge the generous support of Dr. R.G. (Bud) Williams, Emerging Artist Scholarship Fund Brian Grasmuck

Impresario Circle Platinum

Dr. Phillip Van der Merwe – Company Physician Dr. Joseph Warshawski – Company Otolaryngologist

Andrea Brussa * Judith & Terence Dalgleish * Stewart & Eileen Ford David & Beverley Foy Brian Grasmuck Diane Hobson * Marilyn Milavsky Monica Sloan & John Evison * Don Swystun Sheila Wappel-McLean & Brent McLean Marian Williams * * Denotes Adopt-an-Artist Donor

Official Wine Supplier

Gold

Consulting Professionals

Kensington Wine Market

Official Florist Peaseblossoms

Official Piano Technicians of the Arrata Opera Centre Robert Moffatt & Sons

Imperial Oil Foundation

Tunde Agbi Lilien Dobish Don & Joanne Edie Christel & Ben Johansson Dawn & Verne Johnson Mary Rozsa de Coquet Kathy & Richard Sendall C.A. Siebens James M. Stanford

Silver

Anonymous (1) Sharon Bartley Jo Anne Britton

34 CALGARY OPERA 2013-14 SEASON


Lori Caltagirone Carolyn Dahl Rees Maureen & Graham Davies M.A. Duggan Jane & Michael Evans Dan & Susan Ezinga Cos & Eleanor Gabriele Dick & Lois Haskayne David & Joyce Keith Kevin Konynenbelt Leo Le Nobel Russell & Vickie McKinnon Peter & Pat Menzies Geri & Alan Moon Patricia & J. Sherrold Moore Heather Peters James & Susan Reader Tamra Stretch Helen M. Wells

Bronze

Anonymous (1) Dr. Ken Blair Alan D. Castle The Alan D. Castle Endowment for the Arts Helen & Mark Cluett Thomas J. Fishbourne Margaret & Robert Fraleigh Eldon & Carlie-Jean Godfrey Michael & Carmen Hardcastle Rebecca Hotchkiss Juri & Helle Kraav John & Susan McWilliams Dr. Elena O’Connell Heinz & Cathey Schmitz Cynthia Sim Janice Woodward

Core

Anonymous (1) ADEM Engineering Consultants Inc. Dr. Caroline Bain Irene M. Bakker Micheline Barbeau BrightPath Kids Susanne & Michael Brown BKDI Architects Gwen & Ian Burgess

Ioan Dobre and Claudia Cattaneo Judge & Mrs. Mary Jane Cioni Marilyn Conley Kirsten Cook-Zaba & Dwayne Zaba Brent Cooper Patricia Courtright Andy Crichton & Michele Kalny David Daly Bill & Anne-Marie Duma David & Roxanne Dunlop Paul English & Marion Woodman Michael Fawcett Tibor & Livia Fekete Angie Gelinas Patricia Glenn & John Holgate Patricia & Paul Godard Niki & Craig Golinowski Joyce Gray Mattias Grum & Amy Martin David R. Haigh Stella Hall Lynda Hay & Larry Dand Judith Hepner Dr. Mark & Nancy Heule Henry & Johanna Heuver Richard D. & Phoebe Heyman Homes by Avi Carrol Jaques & Bob Loov Glenn Johanson & Margaret Gibson Ryan Kalt Kimberley & Paul Lloyd Jeanne Lougheed Brian P. Mahoney Sian Matthews & Gerry Leudy Dennis & Maureen McConaghy Lachlin & Julianne McKinnon Denise McMullen W.R. (Bob) McPhee Helen Moore-Parkhouse Bruce & Branca Pachkowski Jocelyn Daw & Bob Page Sir Francis Price Lorne & Beth Price Gail & Gerard Protti Ruth & Garry Ramsden-Wood Greta Raymond Agnes & Edward Rewucki Iris Richards

Maggie Rigaux Gordon Ritchie Marion Rogers Gordon W. Ross & Richard Cote Gordon Sombrowski & Kevin Allen Arlene Strom & Colin Jackson Cheryl Swan Kenneth Turnbull & Faye Larson Henriette & Kees van Ittersum Dan & Molly Wares Andy & Krystyna Williamson Maurice & Anne Petrie Yacowar

Individual Donors $500 - $1,249

Anonymous (5) David & Beverley Butler Dr. Miriam Carey Edna M. Charchuk Ted & Yanka Cochrane Martha Cohen Lucinda Crist Sheldon Tony & Gillean Daffern Gizella Davis Drs. Lisa DiFrancesco & Doug Demetrick A.N. Edgington John & Audrey Fry Global Training Centre James Hughes Gail Kennedy Evelyn C. Kings Derek & Nancy Lee JoAnn McCaig Janis & Bruce Morrison Dr. Brian Norford Roger & Pam Prior Cam & Helga Schneider Richard & Shannon Tanner Rodney Touche Paul Vanderberg Robert & Kathryn Worthingham

$250 - $499

Anonymous (4) Karyn Leidal & John Armstrong David Blois A.J. Brown & R.B. Beaty

MADAME BUTTERFLY 35


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corporate and community support Peter Callaghan G. Carson Tom Goulding Robert & Linda Heidemann Ms Mary Lou Higgins Sandra Hunt McDonald P. Kornacki Robert & Linda Lesoway John Martland Outi McEachern Brian Mills & Susan Tyrrell James G. & Jean Ann Murray Paddon Hughes Development Co. Barry & Gail Pollock Elinor Rae Donna Riback Kelly Robinson Dr. Douglas & Laurie Strother Greg Szuch Melanie Stapleton & Dale Voight Val & Gerry Ward Robert E. Woodrow Jerilyn Wright

$100 - $249

Anonymous (19) Beth & Peter Adams Tina Antony Carol & Chris Archer Jennifer Arko Larry Bailey Marion Beer Helen Bereta Rudy & Jeanette Berger Pieter Bessem & Heather Fraser George Bezaire Katri Bruen Marion R. Burrus Dr. & Mrs. David Butts S & M Cameron Anita Carey Frances V. Cormack Greg Coupal Craighead Family Anne-Marie Crawford Isabella Crossfield Paul Derksen John & Mari Jo deWaal

In Memory of Hilda Doherty H & J Doornberg C. Morag Dornian Denis & Pat Duke Edi J. Dygert Frank Everts Stephen & Miriam Field Barbara & Larry Fish Jean L. Fisher Gillian Forster Ingrid Geppert L. & M. Gregoret Ileen Hagen Dorothy Hawkes Accu-Tax Consulting Corp. David & Anne Hills David Hobill John Humphrey Helen Isaac Jellicoe Family Camille Jim JoAnn Jones Sheila Kirkland & Frank Breisch Martin & Jennifer King Carolyn & Don Larsen Michael Lee Hing Sandra Lucas Kelly MacFarlane & Christopher S Mackay Philip & Eleanor May Terry McColl Karen McCullough J.R. & Donna McDonald Thelma McDonald Sean McInnes Karen D. McKay K. Millard Dr. Darlene Montgomery Colin Moreland Gail Niinimaa John & Jean Partridge Joanne Taylor A. M. Patterson Pamela Smith L. Percifield Justice Carolyn S. Phillips Erika Pochailo Maureen Poscente Fred Rayer

Marlene & Norm Raymond Chere Reilly Vera A. Ross Samuel Schorr Laura Scott Robert & Tamara Seiler Doris & Gerard Sheilan Barbara Shellian Betty Sherwood Penny Smith Vanessa Smith Doug Soeder Joanne Stalinski Kathie and Bill Stell Andrew Cook & Shannon Stevenson Ralph Strother Carolyn & David Tavender Peg Taylor Hans Tieman Sharon Todd Nancy Tousley Cameron Leah Truch Caroline Weisgerber Tatiana Willumsen Shortgrass Property Services/ Patrick Windle Mike & Dawn Wood (Mrs) Herrat Zahner Bonnie Zwack

Memorials

In Memory of Alan, Debra, Donald & Mark Blayney - Jean Blayney In Loving Memory of Wilma Kitchingham Marjorie, in Memory of Edward McCarthy

MADAME BUTTERFLY 37


2

1

3

4

spo

5

t h g lt i

On February 8th

a special public performance of Hansel & Gretel was presented at the Arrata Opera Centre before the show embarked on a four-week school tour in Calgary and southern Alberta. Community Outreach sponsor Cenovus Energy not only supported the school and community tour but also provided volunteers to help us with the public performance. Thank you Cenovus!

1. Courtney V. Murias and Laura McLean 2. Lynne Douglas, Danielle Harnois, Helen, Mel, Angie Duong and Adeniyi Adeniran

3. Alexandra Beley, Julie Ludwig, Tyler Fitzgerald

4. Tonatiuh Abrego 5. Matthew Johnson


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Calgary Opera program - Madame Butterfly  

The program for Calgary Opera for performances of Madame Butterfly

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