A NIGHT AT THE OPERA

Balonne Beacon - - FRONT PAGE - Mar­guerite Cud­dihy Mar­guerite.Cud­dihy @west­ern­starnews.com

MORE than 120 peo­ple joined Opera Queens­land stars on an ad­ven­ture through Car­men, Madama But­ter­fly, Rigo­letto and Don Gio­vanni in St Ge­orge on Thurs­day night.

Rang­ing from the bois­ter­ous La donna e mo­bile of Rigo­letto to the pen­sive Flower Duet from Lakme, the au­di­ence sat en­thralled and at times sang along to the recog­nis­able melodies.

The cast kept the per­for­mance light, sprin­kling com­edy and the­atri­cal moments be­tween the songs to add con­text to the fa­mous crescen­dos.

Renowned op­er­atic tenor Rosario la Spina, so­prano Emily Burke, mezzo so­prano Vic­to­ria Lam­bourn and bari­tone Shaun Brown com­prised the four-part cast that has been tour­ing re­gional Queens­land since Au­gust 25. Opera Queens­land re­gional tour­ing man­ager Mark Tay­lor said the singers were trav­el­ling to many ru­ral and re­mote lo­ca­tions on their 22-day tour.

“Opera Queens­land’s vi­sion is an end­less land­scape of opera ex­pe­ri­ences and I be­lieve head­ing west typ­i­fies it,” Mr Tay­lor said.

“The whole point of this tour is to give peo­ple the opera that they love, to give them the beauty in a less-than-ex­pected lo­ca­tion.

“Opera is a 400-year-old art form and this set-up here frames some of Aus­tralia’s best tal­ent in an out­back Queens­land set­ting.”

St Ge­orge Art Coun­cil’s David Jack­son said the cater­ing from the

St Pa­trick’s P&C Com­mit­tee was de­li­cious and the opera was bril­liant.

Mr Jack­son said the next pro­duc­tion on of­fer from the Arts Coun­cil would be Tif­fany and Mad­di­son’s Bo­tox Party on Tues­day, Oc­to­ber 17, at the St Ge­orge Cul­tural Cen­tre.

“It is a com­edy and com­pletely dif­fer­ent in style to the opera per­for­mance, and will in­clude singing as well,” he said.

“Pro­ceeds of the night will go to the Olive McMa­hon Lodge in Toowoomba, which pro­vides much-needed ac­com­mo­da­tion for

St Ge­orge res­i­dents who are un­der­go­ing can­cer treat­ment.”

PHOTO: DAVID JACK­SON

NIGHT OF DE­LIGHTS: Opera Queens­land stars win over the crowd with well-known ren­di­tions of opera arias.

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