Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Press Release: El Paso Opera’s “Madama Butterfly” adds third show

Thursday, March 10, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 12, 7:30 p.m.
3rd SHOW: Sunday, March 13, 2:30 p.m.

WHERE: Abraham Chavez Theatre

Due to popular demand, El Paso Opera has added a third performance to its “Madama Butterfly” schedule. There will be a matinee on Sunday, March 13, at 2:30 p.m. This is in addition to performances Thursday, March 10, and Saturday, March 12, at 7:30 p.m. All performances are at the Abraham Chavez Theatre.

“Madama Butterfly” marks El Paso Opera’s return to grand opera, with full sets and costumes. “Butterfly” is also one of the most popular operas of all time. It’s been two years since El Paso Opera has staged a grand opera (“Magic Flute” was the last, in 2009), and audiences are in for a treat with an Emmy®-winning production and all-star cast.

But “grand” doesn’t mean elitist — at least, not in El Paso.

El Paso Opera artistic and general director David Grabarkewitz has made it his mission to bring opera to the entire El Paso-Juárez community, as well as to traditional opera patrons.

So he’s made sure that promotions for the “Madama Butterfly” reach a Spanish-speaking audience and most neighborhoods of El Paso and Ciudad Juárez.
And for the first time, El Paso Opera advertised on a billboard in Ciudad Juárez and established a toll-free phone number for ticket-buyers in Mexico.

The opera also stretched its Spanish promotion in El Paso to bench ads in the Mission Valley and the bustling East side. A Spanish-language billboard is visible on I-10 West at Lomaland.
“Opera for All!” has been the motto of Grabarkewitz’s mission, and El Paso Opera will continue its Opera for All series in advance of “Madama Butterfly.” Opera for All events run from 60-75 minutes and will feature performances by members of the “Butterfly” cast.

Opera for All performances will be presented in English and Spanish and are open to the public free of charge.

Opera for All performances:

• El Paso Community College Transmountain Campus, Sunday, Feb. 27, 2:00 p.m.
• Fort Bliss’ Freedom Crossing- Grand Hall, Sunday, Feb. 27, 5:00 p.m.
• La Fe Community Technology Center, 721 South Ochoa St., Tuesday, March 2, 2:00 p.m.

“Butterfly is a celebration of big, classical opera,” said Grabarkewitz. “It’s a great story for first-time opera goers. If you haven’t been to the opera recently, this is the perfect show to get re-acquainted.”
Grabarkewitz used his influence as the resident stage director for the New York City Opera at Lincoln Center to ensure the highest quality Butterfly production in El Paso.

“I requested favors from the amazing cast and designer, and we've put together a phenomenal show.” Grabarkewitz said. “We’ve assembled an internationally renowned cast that is second-to-none.”

Indeed, Grabarkewitz directed several of the principal actors in an Emmy®-winning telecast for PBS performed at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.

“Its story holds themes very familiar to El Pasoans: a military serviceman falls in love with a young woman.”

Information: El Paso Opera 581-5534

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