Future opera singers are easily identified at birth due to their multi-octave crying and graceful bows as they emerge from the womb. Check out how far these toddling tenors have come with this GrouponLive deal to see opera at Ruth Eckerd Hall. Choose between the following options:
For $60, you get one ticket for seating in rows L–LL to both of the following shows at 7 p.m. on a Thursday (a $120 value):
Both operas will be in Italian with English supertitles. Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
The Barber of Seville
Perhaps the pinnacle of comic opera, The Barber of Seville tells the tale of the boisterous Figaro going about his everyday duties: a head of hair or two to cut, a delivered letter here and there, and a bit of matchmaking for hire. Wealthy Count Almaviva desires the beautiful Rosina—and says so in a window-side serenade—but the maiden is in the custody of the vile Dr. Bartolo, who intends to marry her himself. Enter Figaro, armed with a big baritone, a quick wit, and a jacket lined with false mustaches. It takes Almaviva three or four costume changes to do so, but the smitten count is willing to take on all the personas he needs to win the fair Rosina’s heart.
Without a doubt, The Barber of Seville's most famous aria is "Largo al factotum" (“Make way for the factotum”), though Bugs Bunny fans may know it simply as “Figaro! Figaro!” The barber belts this tongue-twisting piece by way of introduction, establishing a personality at once bombastic, bold, and able. Later, in the serene "Una voce poco fa" (“A voice a little while ago”), Rosina’s piping vocal acrobatics betray her heart’s desire for the mysterious caller at her window.
La Traviata transports audiences into the romantic, opulent, and dangerous world of 18th-century Parisian high society with the opera classic that inspired the feature film Moulin Rouge!. The show tells of the descent of a courtesan who must repress her love for a younger man and her obsession with anything in a ruffled collar. The opera features such timeless arias as the intoxicating opener "Libiamo ne' lieti calici" and the tender "Un di, felice, eterea." Giuseppe Verdi's soaring score perfectly captures the passion and underlying sadness of its world of beauty-obsessed libertines, much like a dove's song captures the feeling of putting your toe socks on the wrong feet.