Friday, April 3, 2015

Michael Mayes to reprise Glory Denied

Brandon Snook & Michael Mayes (photo: Jim Weber/The Commercial Appeal)
The Memphis Opera is presenting their third annual Midtown Opera Festival with three very different operas, one being Tom Cipullo's Glory Denied with barihunk Michael Mayes. The opera was performed two years ago at the Fort Worth Opera Festival with Mayes in the lead and was also recorded on CD.

The opera tells the story of Colonel Jim Thompson, the longest-held American prisoner of war. He was imprisoned by his Vietnamese captors for nine years and eventually came home to troubling changes in his country and his family. There will be performances on April 9 and 11 at the Playhouse on the Square. Joining Mayes in the cast are Brandon Snook, Cree Caricco and Jennifer Goode Cooper.

The Festival will also present Poulenc's Les Mamelles de Tirésias, an opera that we feature regularly on this site. It will be preceeded by the New Ballet Ensemble performing Darius Milhaud’s 18-minute Le boeuf sur le toit, a Brazilian-flavored surrealist ballet. Performances are on April 10 and 18.

The final opera will be Henry Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, which premiered in 1688 and will be performed on period instruments. This production is made possible through a partnership with the Mike Curb Institute for Music at Rhodes College. Performances are on April 17 and 18.

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