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The J. Paul Getty Museum Presents Jacopo Peri's Euridice, an Original Production by the Long Beach Opera

Performance celebrates 400th Anniversary of the First Opera

September 11, 2000

Los Angeles--In a debut appearance at the Getty Center, the Long Beach Opera (LBO) presents an original interpretation of Jacopo Peri's Euridice October 6-8, 2000. Celebrating the 400th anniversary of the first extant opera, the opening night performance on Friday, October 6 at 8 p.m. is followed by a champagne and dessert reception. Additional performances are on Saturday, October 7 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, October 8 at 3 p.m. The opera will be held in the Harold M. Williams Auditorium, 1200 Getty Center Drive. Tickets are $85 for opening night, $55 for the other performances, and are available through Tickets L.A. at 323-655-TKTS. Parking is included in the ticket price. A prix fixe meal will be served before each performance at the Restaurant at the Getty Center (Friday and Saturday dinner $37; Sunday brunch $29). Please call the Restaurant at 310-440-7300 for reservations.

Originally performed on October 6, 1600 at the Pitti Palace in Florence, Italy, Euridice is the love story of the singer Orpheus, who follows his beloved Euridice to the underworld. The depth of his love and the overwhelming power of his song arouse the pity of its gods who open its gates for his entry into the darkness. Orpheus finds his Euridice, and together they return to the serene skies of a world ruled by love and art.

In its 22nd season, LBO is the oldest professional opera company in the greater Los Angeles/Orange County area. The company is known for innovative productions of modern and ancient repertory rarely performed by American opera companies.

Andrew Lawrence King, music director of the production, is also the founder of The Harp Consort, known for 17th-century dance performances, major recordings of early operas, and early music concerts in the U.S. and Europe. He is principal guest director of Florence's L'homme Armé, principal guest conductor of Finland's Tapiola Sinfonietta, and a regular guest conductor at Corona Artis in Sweden and at Concerto Copenhagen. In Euridice, he plays the harp and harpsichord continuo. Musica Angelica Founder Michael Eagan plays the theorbo.

Isabel Milenski makes her professional operatic staging debut with Euridice. She has assisted with other LBO productions and worked at Italy's Instituto d'Arte Scenica. Designing the production is Darcy Scanlin in her professional debut. Costume design is by Audrey Fisher, whose credits include productions at St. Louis' Opera Theater and L.A.'s Evidence Room and Cornerstone Theater. Lighting is by Geoff Korf who lit LBO's Bluebeard's Castle.

Mezzo-soprano Christine Abraham sings the title role. She has previously appeared at Glimmerglass Opera as Dafne in Cavalli's La Calisto and as Minerva in Monteverdi's Il ritorno di Ulisse in Patria. Tenor William Hite sings Orfeo. Soprano Ellen Hargis--whose recent recording, Il Zazzarino, won a Grammy award--plays Dafne, the messenger who relays the tragedy of Euridice's death. Tenor Nils Brown sings the philosopher Arcetro. Basso Curtis Streetman performs as the god of the underworld, Pluto. Additional roles are performed by Dan Plaster, Steven Grimms, Paul Cummings, Rachelle Skloff and Natalie Taormina.

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About the Getty:

The J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that features the Getty Conservation Institute, the Getty Foundation, the J. Paul Getty Museum, and the Getty Research Institute. The J. Paul Getty Trust and Getty programs serve a varied audience from two locations: the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Getty Villa in Malibu.

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