Phoenicia International Festival Of The Voice Celebrates Its Tenth Season

Phoenicia Festival of the Voice will share musical gems that honor African-American culture and talent and features the Elixir of Love, a comic opera by Donizetti with a reimagined setting August 2-4

PHOENICIA, NY – June 25, 2019 -  Celebrating its 10th Anniversary, the Phoenicia Festival of the Voice will share musical gems that honor African-American culture and talent and features the Elixir of Love, a comic opera by Donizetti with a reimagined setting August 2-4.  Remaining true to its mission of bringing together some of the world's greatest vocal talent to audiences in the Catskills region, an area unparalleled in artistic accomplishments in areas of music, culinary arts, wine making and local brews. This year's Festival will host internationally acclaimed performers and composers in a series of unforgettable open-air summer concerts at seven venues conveniently within walking distance. The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice is a one-of-a-kind music event that allows audiences to experience world-class talent, often only seen in metropolitan venues, in the charming and unique Hamlet of Phoenicia.

A celebration of innocence set uniquely in a African village, Elixir of Love by Donizetti, is featured on Saturday evening.  Nemorino is a likable but hopeless romantic who has fallen in love with the bold and quick-witted Adina who rebuffs his pleas of love. When an offer of marriage arises from the self-important Sergeant Belcore and a dubious witchdoctor, Dulcamara, rolls into town offiering what seems like the perfect solution – The Elixir of Love.  With returning festival favorites, the production is staged and directed by Maria Todaro and conducted by maestro David Wroe.  African dance star Sylvester Akakpor will ad her incredible talents and flare to this production.

The festivities begin with our 10 Year Gala – Decade of Opera Favorites on Friday, August 2.  Some of your favorite stars and operas from past years present a retrospective, including favorite arias from Madama Butterfly, Carmen, Barber of Seville, LaBoheme, Carmen and much more.

Saturday is replete with incredible offerings starting with Lady Parts, an a capella group comprised of accomplished opera divas of global repute, exploring the role of abolitionists, the struggle for racial equality and secret meanings for escaping slaves in the musical form of the spiritual.  Back by popular demand is the biographical play about dissonant diva Florence Foster Jenkins, an amateur operatic soprano.  Her Philadelphia and New York recitals were well attended and elicited as much laughter as applause — as it will from you as well.  In Music from the African Diaspora, virtuoso Justin Kolb presents a shower of complex rhythms, with sonics ranging from familiar jazz "licks" to mind-bending melodies. Some traditional music with some "out there" harmonics along with recitation of poetry and stories by Carey Harrison will shape this most unusual and unique program.

Continuing the tradition of providing a platform for young artists, we present excerpts from the ragtime opera Treemonisha by Scott Joplin. With music reimagined and restructured by Houston Grand Opera composer-in-residence, Damien Sneed, the opera is concerned with the plight of the newly freed slaves who, because they lack education, fall easy prey to conjurers and superstition in the post-Civil War South. The liberation of all people through education, the concept of women's liberation and the eradication of prejudice and ignorance are the crux of Joplin's message.

Our very own Catskill Mountains are brimming with talent. To close the weekend, we honor our time long tradition of incorporating local talent in our operas and shows as we present a program of home grown vocal and musical talent of all genres, ranging from classical, jazz, Broadway and rock.  Following, we will clear the stage and host DJ Skoob E 's dance party to celebrate YOU, the ones that make it all possible.

Latte lectures and workshops round out the array of offerings the Festival brings to these mountains at accessible ticket prices ranging from $35 - $95.

In addition, the Festival continues to offer a range of internship opportunities in such disciplines as art management, marketing, musical and artistic development as well as Masterclasses and counseling in career management. Interns receive college credits along with the enriching experience of being part of the Festival. A number of the graduates of our young artists' programs today perform alongside established international artists.

The Phoenicia International Festival of the Voice is set to take place on August 2-4, 2019 in the Hamlet of Phoenicia, New York in the foothills of the breathtakingly beautiful Catskill Mountains.

For more information and tickets availability, please visit our website at or by calling 845-688-3291.

Lois Saff
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Tags:Music, Festival, Opera
Location:Phoenicia - New York - United States
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