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Music magic - Santa Fe Opera program to stop in Meadow City

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Submitted to the Optic

The Santa Fe Opera’s musical ambassadors have set out on the annual spring tour with stops throughout New Mexico and Texas.

Soprano Sara Heaton and tenor Joshua Dennis, both former apprentices, along with Music Director Kirt Pavitt, started the three week-long journey earlier this month in Tucumcari and will end in Moriarty on May 3. The trio will offer school performances and free concerts for families.

Sunday afternoon, they will perform for a public concert at 3 p.m. at Sala de Madrid on the campus of New Mexico Highlands University. On Saturday, opera educator Oliver Prezant will have talks about various types of music and opera.

One talk is scheduled for 10 a.m. and another at 1 p.m. at Charlie’s.

Attendees of Sunday’s concert will hear Avastar, an original work written by Kirt Pavitt and stage director Kathleen Clawson especially for the tour as an introduction to opera using contemporary themes.

The 35-minute piece is about a “virtual world” singing competition which our singers have entered and includes selections from opera, Broadway and current popular music.

Study guides are provided by the Opera so that teachers and students can prepare for the visits. They cover subjects such as musical terms, questions and answers, and discussion topics. Avastar will also be performed on the first half of the free concerts program.

The Spring Opera Tour has been going on for more than 20 years, performing in cities and towns in New Mexico (and Lubbock and El Paso) for students and families who may not have an opportunity to travel to Santa Fe. The tour’s appearance is an eagerly anticipated event in communities that vie to be included in the trip’s itinerary.  

The tour is supported by the Guilds of The Santa Fe Opera, Inc.; New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs; the City of Santa Fe Arts Commission and the 1% Lodgers’ Tax, and the National Endowment for the Arts: Art Works.

For information, contact Kristin Hsueh at 426-3204.