In collaboration with The MidAtlantic Opera Company, Seton Hall's
arts programs will co-present a fully-staged production of Henry
Purcell's Dido and Aeneas. An exciting first for the University, the
production, conducted and stage directed by Jason C. Tramm, will be
presented over four performances at the South Orange Performing Arts
Center beginning on May 1. "We are thrilled by this wonderful
opportunity for our students and the collaboration with MidAtlantic
Opera Company. The arts at Seton Hall are of vital import to the
cultural and educational experience of every student at the university"
says Professor Deirdre Yates, Chair of the Department of Communication
and the Arts.
The cast features mezzo-soprano Janara Kellerman (New Jersey Symphony
Orchestra, Indianapolis Opera) as Dido, baritone Charles Schneider
(Washington National Opera, The Princeton Festival) as Aeneas, and
mezzo-soprano Elizabeth Grohowski (Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of
Chicago, San Francisco Opera) as the Sorceress. Joining the principals
onstage will be students from Seton Hall University, performing all
supporting roles, and Seton Hall's Chamber Choir. According to Dr.
Tramm, Artistic Director of MidAtlantic Opera and Director of Choral
Activities at Seton Hall, "It is exciting to present a production that
combines established operatic performers with talented student artists.
The result is inspirational for both and is an educational experience
of the highest caliber. This production marks Seton Hall’s first fully
staged operatic production in recent history and will be one to
Dido and Aeneas was first performed in 1689 and premiered at Josias Priest's Boarding School for Girls in the Chelsea section of London. The
story unfolds as Aeneas, the son of Venus and Anchises of Troy, flees
his home after it is sacked by the Greeks. Aeneas and his crew are
shipwrecked in Carthage, where the legendary Queen Dido is mourning her
dead husband to whom she has sworn eternal fidelity. Dido and Aeneas
meet and fall in love. But Fate has decreed that Aeneas found a new
nation and he must leave the queen. Aeneas must soon leave to found
Rome. Not in Virgil’s source material are the Sorceress and a coven of
witches that were added by the librettist, Tate. These characters plot
to cause Dido's ruin.
The Star Ledger has named Seton Hall's Dido and Aeneas a Top 5 Event of the Week »
Performances are May 1, 2, and 3 at 8 p.m. and May 4 at 2 p.m.
at SOPAC, located in downtown South Orange. Admission is $25 for the
general public, $15 for senior citizens and SHU alumni, $8 for Seton
Hall employees and students from other universities. There is no
admission for SHU students and individuals 18 and under. Tickets can be
purchased online at www.sopacnow.org or by calling (973) 313-2787.
For more information please contact: