OFTY FYI: Our feature on WPR’s “The Midday”!

Click to see the live performance!

Singer Saira Frank & pianist Vincent Fuh perform on “The Midday”
(Studio photo by Allen Rieland)

Did you catch Opera for the Young on Wisconsin Public Radio’s “The Midday” last week? If not (or if you’d like to hear it again), we’ve added two special highlight videos from the feature to our “In the News” playlist on YouTube and the entire radio interview can be heard online in “The Midday” Archives. OFTY Artistic Director Diane Garton Edie and Norm discuss OFTY’s upcoming 2017-2018 school tour of Rusalka: A Mermaid’s Tale, an OFTY original adaptation based on Dvořák’s opera of the same name. Managing Director Saira Frank and pianist Vincent Fuh perform two of Rusalka’s dramatic moments from the show, then Vince describes some of the challenges OFTY faces (and embraces!) in adapting operas for children.

OFTY FYI: Friends at Sugar Creek Opera!

"Thank You!" video from Sugar Creek Opera

Click “play” to see the slideshow

We just had to share this heartfelt “Thank You” video we received from Sugar Creek Opera following five performances in Iroquois County. Last week, Sugar Creek Opera sponsored five performances of Opera for the Young’s “Elixir of Love” in their local elementary schools: Watseka’s Wanda Kendall and Nettie Davis, Milford School, Thawville Elementary and Gilman ElementaryOFTY’s touring cast featured two former Sugar Creek Opera apprentice artists, Megan Brunning and Brett Potts. Megan Brunning played the Queen of the Night in Sugar Creek Opera’s 2015 production of The Magic Flute and Brett Potts was just seen as Al in The Grapes of Wrath this past summer. These two artists were also featured on a radio interview – listen to the interview here!

Sponsored by Sugar Creek Opera and in part by the Iroquois Federal Foundation, this opportunity was provided at no charge to these schools. Sugar Creek Opera has plans to sponsor this tour as an annual event and bring it to even more schools in 2018! We are so proud of this collaborative effort to introduce opera to students in Iroquois County. Sugar Creek General Director Helen Todd shares our enthusiasm:
“Opera for the Young does something that I have rarely seen in opera performance. They bring opera down to a child’s imagination and bring it to life. The stage direction for this tour was child centered and the translation was light and fun and easily understood. The world of opera was brought to the children with a sense of wonder and the child’s involvement in the performance was nurtured and valued. If only all arts organizations could lift up the child in this way, audiences would grow forever. Bravo! The children of our community had never seen opera before this performance. What a gift!”