SINGING FOR SE­NIORS

Opera Saratoga event en­ter­tains young and old alike

The Saratogian (Saratoga, NY) - - LOCAL NEWS - By Lau­ren Halligan lhal­li­gan@dig­i­tal­first­media.com

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. >> Opera Saratoga’s fifth an­nual Saratoga Sings! for Se­niors tour stopped at the Saratoga Se­nior Cen­ter on Fri­day, pro­vid­ing a mem­o­rable per­for­mance for au­di­ence mem­bers both young and old.

Saratoga Se­nior Cen­ter mem­bers were joined by high school stu­dents from the nearby Saratoga Cen­tral Catholic School on Fri­day morn­ing for a free show by Opera Saratoga.

Three alumni of Opera Saratoga’s na­tion­ally ac­claimed Young Artist Pro­gram - mezzo so­prano Paulina Vil­lar­real, bass bari­tone Nate Mattingly, and con­duc­tor/pi­anist Bran­don El­dredge - per­formed a se­lec­tion of songs at the cen­ter for the mixed crowd.

Stu­dents were paired with se­niors as their dates to the opera, en­gag­ing in con­ver­sa­tion be­fore and af­ter the mu­sic.

Opera Saratoga presents its Saratoga Sings! for Se­niors pro­gram as a way to bring opera into the lives of older adults through­out the area. This year, the tour in­cludes 16 stops at re­tire­ment com­mu­ni­ties, se­nior cen­ters and as­sisted liv­ing fa­cil­i­ties through­out the Cap­i­tal Re­gion, con­tin­u­ing through Mon­day.

“Opera Saratoga ex­ists to serve the com­mu­nity, and as such, we aim to pro­vide op­por­tu­ni­ties for au­di­ences to ex­pe­ri­ence opera through­out the year in many dif­fer­ent ways,” said Lawrence Edelson, the artis­tic and gen­eral di­rec­tor of Opera Saratoga. “We launched Saratoga Sings for Se­niors in 2014 to in­crease ac­cess to opera for older mem­bers of the com­mu­nity, many of whom are not able to at­tend per­for­mances due to lim­ited in­come, mo­bil­ity or other health is­sues.

“This pro­gram re­moves all of those bar­ri­ers by bring­ing the mu­sic di­rectly to them, where they live. It is truly one of the most im­pact­ful and re­ward­ing things we do all sea­son.”

More in­for­ma­tion about Opera Saratoga and its pro­grams is avail­able on­line at www. op­erasaratoga.org.

LAU­REN HALLIGAN PHO­TOS

Nate Mattingly and Paulina Vil­lar­real of Opera Saratoga’s Young Artists pro­gram per­form on Fri­day morn­ing at the Saratoga Se­nior Cen­ter as part of the group’s Saratoga Sings! for Se­niors tour.

Saratoga Cen­tral Catholic School stu­dents in­ter­act with mem­bers at the Saratoga Se­nior Cen­ter be­fore an Opera Saratoga per­for­mance, part of the group’s Saratoga Sings! for Se­niors tour.

Au­di­ence mem­bers ap­plaud for Opera Saratoga artists dur­ing a per­for­mance on Fri­day morn­ing at the Saratoga Se­nior Cen­ter as part of the group’s Saratoga Sings! for Se­niors tour.

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