A rarely performed Rossini opera that retells one of Shakespeare’s greatest tragedies, produced by the ever inventive local company LoftOpera, opens next month at LightSpace Studios on Flushing Avenue.
“Otello,” an adaptation of the Bard’s jealousy-fueled masterpiece, will open on March 16 and play through March 27 in the Flushing Avenue photography studio.
This will be the first fully staged production of the opera in New York City in over four decades, and the staging reflects the disquieting times we’re living in: the company explains that the piece is “set during Italy’s mid-twentieth century ‘Economic Miracle’ era, putting conflicts of nationalistic bigotry and political sabotage at its forefront.”
The production will star tenor Bernard Holcomb, with soprano Cecilia Violetta López as the ill-fated Desdemona. Rossini’s adaptation dials down the importance of villain Iago, who will be played by tenor Blake Friedman, and makes Rodrigo, who will be played by tenor Thor Arbjornsson, a more critical character. John de los Santos directs, and the production’s 27-piece orchestra and ten member chorus are conducted by bel canto specialist Sean Kelly.
General admission tickets for Otello with bench seating are $30 and are available by visiting www.loftopera.com. Memberships and reserved seating options are also available.
Performances will take place on March 16, 18, 20, 23, 25 and 27 at 8:00 p.m., with doors at 7:00 p.m.
Featured image: Soprano Cecilia Violetta López as Desdemona and tenor Bernard Holcomb start in LoftOpera’s spring 2017 production of Rossini’s “Otello.” Photo courtesy of LoftOpera.