Long Beach Opera Kicks Off 2017 Season With Henry Purcell’s The Fairy Queen

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Long Beach Opera (LBO) opens its 2017 season on January 22 and 28, 2017 with Henry Purcell’s 1692 The Fairy Queen, a re-telling of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The California-based performance troupe Culture Clash and LBO’s Artistic and General Director Andreas Mitisek put their spin on this immortal tale. The Fairy Queen will be performed at the Beverly O’Neill Theater, 300 E. Ocean Boulevard, Long Beach CA. 90802.

In this new version by Culture Clash and Mitisek, Ron and Tanya (formerly Oberon and Titania) prepare to throw a party at ‘Club Puck’ in sultry Las Vegas. Their plans come to a halt when Ron flirts with one of the club’s dancers. Puck, the club’s owner, offers Ron a mysterious drink to renew Tanya’s love. The concoction does as promised, but Cupid’s arrow has missed its mark. The magic potion finds its way into several unwitting hands causing lovers’ eyes to wander, lines of sexual orientation to blur, and chaos to ensue. Shakes, a drunken poet, stands readily by to trade his sonnets for drinks and give his unsolicited advice.

The Fairy Queen will be sung in English and conducted by Martin Haselböck, music director of Musica Angelica. The opera will be directed and designed by Mitisek.

The Chicago Tribune called this co-production with Chicago Opera Theater “an edgy contemporary cross between A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Cabaret…laughs and elegant baroque tunes in abundance.”

Collaborating with Mitisek on the contemporary adaptation of The Fairy Queen is the California-based performance troupe Culture Clash, founded by Richard Montoya, Ric Salinas and Herbert Siguenza. They have been writing and performing together for over 30 years. This award-winning group’s work ranges from comedic sketches to screenplays to full-length plays, all of which involve political and social satire.

Culture Clash commented, “What a mad opera concoction to mix Henry Purcell, Shakespeare, Culture Clash, and Long Beach Opera with the daring alchemist director Andreas Mitisek. Together it makes for a potent mix of classical, historical, hysterical and unpredictable storytelling. We are so grateful for LBO trusting us with this dynamite, adapting, remixing and refreshing The Fairy Queen. We dug deep into our arsenal of death-defying rogue theater and loved every minute of it, as we undertook the task and the challenge to write an original (alongside Andreas). A night at the opera with Culture Clash already sounds like a classic.”

“This adaptation of Purcell’s opera puts a contemporary spin on an old story,” said Mitisek. “The opera’s multicultural cast and Musica Angelica’s period instrumentation will create a sparkling performance.”

CAST: Kim Jones in the role of Tanya/Fairy Queen, Marc Molomot as the club owner Puck, Cedric Berry as Ron, Roberto Gomez as Shakes the Poet, Ryan Belongie as Lysander, Scott Brunscheen as Demetrius, Alexandra Martinez as Helena and Darryl Taylor as Herman.

PERFORMANCES: Sunday afternoon, January 22, 2017, at 2:30 PM Saturday afternoon, January 28, 2017, at 2:30 PM Saturday evening, January 28, 2017, at 8:00 PM

Runtime: Two hours and 25 minutes with one 15-minute intermission. Sung in English.

TICKETS: Single tickets for The Fairy Queen range from $49 to $150 and can be purchased by calling the LBO Box Office at 562.470.SING (7464) x101 or by going online at www.longbeachopera.org. Subscriptions offering ticket discounts are still available online or by phone.

SEASON: LBO continues its 2017 season on March 12 and 18, 2017 with the U.S. premiere of Philip Glass’ The Perfect American, a fictionalized biography of Walt Disney’s life melding delusions of the American Dream, immortality, and empire. On May 13, 20 and 21, LBO will present composer Laura Kaminsky’s As One, the compelling story of a transgender youth. Concluding the season in June will be five performances of Roberto Xavier Rodríguez’ Frida, a searing bio drama depicting the pain and passion of famed Mexican artist Frida Kahlo.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: www.longbeachopera.org

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