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<<  -- 2 --  Malcolm Miller    OPERATIC DELIGHTS

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On Thursday 1 September 2005 for the final concert of three open air Gala Opera evenings in this eleventh Altamira Summer Arts event, there was a sparkling line-up of star soloists and promising young opera singers to regale a large capacity crowd. The evening formed a savoury taster for COC's 2005-6 season beginning later in the month with Carmen and Lady Macbeth, with four of the principals displaying their vocal powers in a selection of popular arias from the operatic repertoire. Alexa Petrenko, of Canada's Classic FM 96.3, one of the sponsors, opened the event by highlighting the charity of the Regent School of Music, providing scholarships for hundreds of inner city children to learn about classical music.

Soprano Georgina Lukacs with Canadian Opera Company General Director Richard Bradshaw conducting, and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. Photo © 2005 Laura Elizabeth Stanley
Soprano Georgina Lukacs with Canadian Opera Company General Director Richard Bradshaw conducting, and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. Photo © 2005 Laura Elizabeth Stanley

The ebullient fanfares of Wagner's Prelude to Lohengrin launched the programme with panache, the exuberant Opera Orchestra conducted dynamically by Richard Bradshaw, COC's musical director. Bradshaw set the scene for each of the lollipops with his usual witty repartee which has become a feature of these evenings, yet also took a moment to reflect upon the recent disaster affecting the Southern USA. Canadians have much to celebrate in their young singers, Bradshaw observed, notably those who over the last few years have gained international recognition. At the same time those European singers who have been invited to the COC help expose Canadian audiences to fresh talents, while the new stars of the largely Canadian 'Ensemble Studio' offer a promising beacon for the future.

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Copyright © 11 September 2005 Malcolm Miller, London UK

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