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A Little Night Music

by YES! Weekly staff

Photo by Christina Holcomb Photography

Piedmont Opera presents Stephen Sondheim’s Tony Award winner

Talk about a night to remember! Everybody is looking for their perfect match by striking it up with different partners in this turn-of-the-last century, Tony Award-winning musical by Stephen Sondheim. The Wall Street Journal raves, “No score of Sondheim’s is as buoyant and thorough-going an example of musical comedy as A Little Night Music.”

Desirée Armfeldt (Diane Alexander) is a middle-aged actress who’s counted among her many lovers Fredrik Egerman (Scott MacLeod), an over-the-hill lawyer now married to an 18-year old virgin, Anne (Jennifer DeLatte). His son Henrik (Jesse Darden), who is studying to be a priest, is secretly in love with Anne. Meanwhile, Count Carl-Magnus Malcolm (Michael Redding) is sleeping with Desirée much to the chagrin of his wife Countess Charlotte Malcolm (Janine Hawley). They all spend “A Weekend in the Country” at the home of Desirée’s mother Madame Armfeldt (Robin Voiers) where trouble will ensue.

The cast is comprised of performers from across the country. Diane Alexander arrives from California to sing the principal role of Desiree. She will perform Send in the Clowns, Sondheim’s haunting ballad in which Desirée reflects on the ironies and disappointments of her life. Over the course of three decades, the critically acclaimed soprano has portrayed leading soprano roles with opera companies and symphonies and has also been seen in recital and master classes across the United States and abroad. In musical theater, Diane’s versatility as a singing actress caught the eye of famed Broadway director Hal Prince, who cast her as Carlotta in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera.

Diane spent a demanding year as diva Carlotta Giudicelli in Phantom of the Opera, San Francisco’s longest running musical. The move to musical theatre was a huge adjustment for Diane, especially performing every day. Opera performers have no amplification so they rarely sing back-to-back days, which gives their voices a chance to rest. In musical theatre, performers use microphones and may perform twice a day, seven days a week.

Producing opera in the City of the Arts also allows Piedmont Opera to draw from an extremely strong pool of local talent. Scott MacLeod will star in the principal role of Fredrik Egerman, a mature lawyer who is sexually frustrated due to his unconsummated 11-month marriage to his 18-year-old trophy wife, Anne, played by UNCSA graduate, Jennifer DeLatte. MacLeod is an assistant professor of voice at High Point University, where he provides individual voice training, teaches opera and musical theatre techniques, and serves as music director for HPU opera and musical theatre productions. He was HPU faculty-in-residence for the Prague Institute in the spring semester of 2015 and was recently a guest artist in the Prague Papers conference, where he debuted the J. Mark Scearce song cycle Keeping Things Whole.

Making her Piedmont Opera debut as Madame Armfeldt is Robin Voiers, who has worked with Twin City Stage in Jean Brodie, Anastasia and On Golden Pond, with Theatre Alliance in Maria Callas, and with the NC Shakespeare Festival in Frosine.

Piedmont Opera also has a longstanding relationship with The A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. Several UNCSA graduates are returning to Winston-Salem, including Jesse Darden, who starred in Piedmont Opera’s production of Roger and Hammerstein’s South Pacific and Jennifer DeLatte, who is a film actress in New Orleans. Jennifer is filming a lead role in The Cybernaturals, a web series currently in production and scheduled for online release in the summer of 2016.

is visually appealing, charmingly naughty and filled with gloriously performed Sondheim music. Talk about a “Night” to remember. !

WANNA go?

Tickets to A Little Night Music are available by calling Piedmont Opera at 336.725.7101 or online at PiedmontOpera.org. Piedmont Opera will perform Sondheim’s Tony Award-winning A Little Night Music on March 18th (8:00 PM), March 20nd (2:00 PM) and March 22nd (7:30 PM) at the Stevens Center of the UNCSA, Winston-Salem, NC.

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