March 15, 2011 — In a sequel to its highly successful Divas & Dilemmas: Opera OUR Way production, the Atlanta Gay Men‟s Chorus will take to the stage Friday and Saturday, April 29-30 to again pay tribute to the rich music — and often over-the-top comedy, drama and pathos — of opera. The AGMC will perform Divas 2: Opera Revisited in the chorus‟ first-ever concert at the Conant Performing Arts Center at Oglethorpe University in Atlanta, home of the Georgia Shakespeare Festival.
“Opera has done many things over the centuries…and many things have been done to opera,” AGMC Artistic Director Kevin Robison said, smiling. “Opera has gone mad, gone to hell, and been „done-up‟ in numerous ways. In 2008, we were proud to focus on this rich repertoire with a well-received, one-night only performance at the new home of The Atlanta Opera during the inaugural season of the Cobb Energy Center.”
Now, like in Hollywood, that successful show has spawned a sequel — Divas 2: Opera Revisited. This time, the AGMC concert will include three performances in the intimate setting of the Conant Performing Arts Center at Oglethorpe.
“The Conant Center is a perfect choice for this event,” Robison said. “Its 500-seat theatre with thrust stage and stadium-style seating will put the audience up close to the action. And the acoustics are perfect for non-amplified performances, enabling the chorus to capture the grandeur of this fantastic music while maintaining a sense of intimacy with our audience. It‟s why the theatre is ideal for Shakespeare, and why it‟s ideal for opera…which is, in many ways, the type of grand drama and light comedy of Shakespeare set to music.”
Like all good sequels, “Divas 2” will include many new features, along with a few familiar ones. “By popular demand — of both our audience and our chorus members — we‟ll bring back two pieces: the „Anvil Chorus‟ from Verdi‟s Il Trovatore, complete with hammer-hauling hunks, and our — ahem — beautiful „Three Little Maids‟ from Gilbert & Sullivan‟s The Mikado. Of course, we‟ll present them with some new twists to keep the audience waiting to see what we‟ve come up with this time.”
Other highlights will include the rapid-fire humor of the mile-a-minute “Modern Major General” from The Pirates of Penzance and a diverse range of selections from Bizet‟s Carmen, Wagner‟s The Flying Dutchman, Puccini‟s Turandot and Mozart‟s The Magic Flute, to name just a few. “Our chorus‟ ability to perform this virtuosic music, in so many styles and languages, is further evidence of the chorus‟ continuing musical growth. I am thrilled to be performing such a rich program with these hard-working and talented men.”
Robison promises great drama and some surprising staging elements during “Divas,” including an impressive opening that will energize and excite the audience through the rest of the entertaining event.
“As with our first „Divas‟ concert, you certainly don‟t need to be an opera fanatic to enjoy this show,” the artistic director noted. “Remember…before there was Broadway, opera was the musical theatre of the masses. No matter what your tastes may be, there will be much for you to enjoy. So grab your helmets and copper brassiere; the AGMC is ready to do opera our way…again!”
Tickets for Divas 2: Opera Revisited can now be purchased. Group discounts are available; call the AGMC office at (404) 320-1030 for details.
In addition, remember that a “rolling subscription” to the next three concerts of the AGMC‟s main season are always available; AGMC subscribers receive the best seats in their chosen section for each concert, along with discounts for later purchase of additional tickets.
To purchase season subscriptions or tickets to Divas 2, call (404) 320-1030 or buy online through the AGMC web site.
Established in 1981 and today one of the world‟s longest-running all-male choruses, the Atlanta Gay Men‟s Chorus entertains, educates and connects audiences through music that is distinguished for its creativity, diversity and artistic excellence.
The chorus is a member of GALA, the Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses, and Chorus America, a 1,600-member non-profit organization that foster the chorus music experience in the U.S.
The AGMC is supported in part by the Georgia Council for the Arts (GCA) through the appropriations of the Georgia General Assembly. The GCA also receives support from its partner agency, the National Endowment for the Arts. Corporate partners include Outwrite Bookstore & Coffeehouse, Radial Café, Alston & Bird, Dan Lax Media, Diageo, The Heretic-Atlanta, The Hope Clinic of the Emory University Vaccine Center, Integral HR, King and Spalding, Macy‟s Marton Technologies, Metrotainment Cafes (Einstein‟s, Joe‟s on Juniper, Joe‟s on Madison, Cowtippers, Hudson Grille, and Metrotainment Bakery), and PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers, LLC). A complete listing of financial supporters — and how you can support the mission of the Atlanta Gay Men‟s Chorus — can be found on agmchorus.org.