November production, presented in collaboration with FringeArts, is made possible by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
Opera Philadelphia is once again expanding its civic footprint – and its 2013-2014 Season – by launching an annual series that will offer fully staged operas in unexpected venues around the city, diversifying operatic experiences for Philadelphia audiences.
Opera in the City, which brings the art form outside of traditional opera houses and into the community, will launch in November with the American Premiere of composer Ana Sokoloviæ’s renowned Svadba–Wedding, in collaboration with FringeArts. Svadba–Wedding is a Serbian, a cappella opera fusing operatic and folk music and telling the story of Milica, a bride-to-be, and her five bridesmaids on the night before her wedding. The production, funded by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, will offer audiences an immersive operatic experience, as ticketholders will join in an authentic Balkan wedding celebration after the performance, featuring traditional cuisine and live Balkan dance music from the West Philadelphia Orchestra.
The one-hour opera and its accompanying 90-minute wedding reception will be presented at the new home of FringeArts, at the corner of Race Street and Columbus Boulevard in Philadelphia. The 1903 historic former pumping station is currently being transformed into a year-round center for contemporary performing and visual arts.
“Opera in the City is about getting outside of the usual and doing different things with opera, and to say this project is different would be an understatement,” said David B. Devan, General Director and President of Opera Philadelphia. “This series will be another transformative initiative for the company and the city, bringing new audiences to opera in new and unexpected places. We thank Knight Foundation for making it possible for us to engage and enrich Philadelphia with this production; and big thanks to FringeArts for being such willing partners in bringing this opera to the stage of their amazing new space.”