Coloratura soprano Brenda Rae returns to alma mater to raise funds for University Opera
Gazing at herself in a bewitched mirror, she is obsessed with her radiant beauty; she caresses her own face and simpers at an imagined lover. That would be Brenda Rae in Seattle Opera’s February production of Handel’s “Semele,” where she was described by Opera News as “sensual,” “dazzling,” and “moving.”
Above: Brenda sings “Myself I shall adore” in Seattle Opera’s Semele.
Discover the dazzle for yourself on September 27, when Appleton native and School of Music/Juilliard alumna Brenda Rae – who has spent most of the last decade performing in Frankfurt, Berlin and other major European opera halls – visits Mills Hall at 7:30 PM to sing a benefit concert for University Opera. She’ll be paired with the UW Symphony Orchestra as she sings Gliere’s Concerto for Coloratura Soprano, having just finished a run in Milwaukee Symphony’s Cosi fan Tutti. She’ll then fly to Paris’s du Théâtre des Champs-Elysées to sing Zerbinetta in Richard Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos.
Brenda’s return is part of a larger three-day fund drive to place University Opera – which has existed at UW-Madison for 57 years, but relies mostly on ticket sales and donations to finance productions – on secure financial footing. On Friday, there will be a free master class in Music Hall from 5-7 PM. On Saturday, two special donor events are planned: the first, a VIP dress rehearsal followed by a private University Club reception for event sponsors. The weekend’s events comprise a fund drive that honors opera alumna Karen K. Bishop, who passed away in January. Her husband, Charlie Bishop, donated $500,000 to the opera program in her name, now matched by a $1 million gift from the Morgridge Fund and local supporters. Read a story in the Wisconsin State Journal about the larger effort.
You are invited to join the many others in Madison who love opera and who have supported University Opera for all or part of its history. Please consider becoming a sponsor:
Includes admission for you and one guest to the private University Club reception with Brenda Rae on Saturday and two tickets to the Sunday concert in a prime seating area.
The Prima Donna
Includes the benefits of the Impresario level, plus your name(s) will appear in the concert program as a master class sponsor.
The Bishop Circle
$1,000 or more
Includes the benefits of the Prima Donna level, plus your name(s) will appear in the concert program as a concert sponsor. You and one guest will also receive admission to the VIP dress rehearsal on Saturday.
Give a gift of $2,500 or more, and you will receive a reserved table in your name for a maximum of eight people at the private University Club reception on Saturday. This includes all the benefits of the Bishop Circle level for the named sponsor, so your name will appear in the concert program at the Bishop Circle level.
Tickets for the Sunday evening concert are $25 for adults, and are available online now; they will also be sold at the door, day of show. Students are free. We invite you to pack Mills Hall and see her now… before she hits the stratosphere!
Legendary “Buena Vista Social Club” musician Juan de Marcos here to teach, perform and inspire
UW-Madison will host legendary Cuban musician, Juan de Marcos González, a driving force behind the Buena Vista Social Club, as the Fall 2015 Arts Institute’s Interdisciplinary Artist in Residence.
During his residency, notable Cuban artists and groups including Afro-Cuban All Stars, Telmary Diaz, Pellejo Seco, and musical members of his family (who also are part of Afro-Cuban All Stars) will perform in Madison. He will present numerous lectures on the history of Cuban music and teach a lecture course called “Afro-Cuban Music: Roots, Jazz, Hip Hop” and a production course “Music Production: Afro-Cuban and Hip Hop Music.” A complete schedule of classes and performances is listed at this website: http://artsinstitute.wisc.edu/iarp/juandemarcos/
Juan de Marcos González was born in Havana, Cuba and grew up surrounded by music. As a musician, composer, and producer, it is his mission to showcase the wealth, diversity, and vitality of Afro-Cuban music to the world. Through his work with the Afro-Cuban All Stars, the Buena Vista Social Club, Rubén González, Ibrahim Ferrer, Sierra Maestra, and others, he has made an extraordinary contribution to raising the profile of Cuban music throughout the world. He has been nominated for a Latin Billboard Award and multiple times for Grammy Awards. During his career, Juan de Marcos has arranged, conducted, produced/co-produced, and/or performed on more than twenty-five albums.
Juan de Marcos González’s residency is presented by the UW-Madison Arts Institute and is hosted by the School of Music and the Office of Multicultural Arts Initiatives (OMAI). Additional co-sponsors and supporters are listed here.
The School of Music offers a smorgasbord of performances each year; we invite you to visit our website and click on our events calendar. We also publish a season brochure that is mailed every August.
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