Friday, February 14th at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, February 16th at 2:00 p.m.
Orpheum Theatre, 409 S 16th St.
She is ambitious. She is seductive. And she really, really wants her son to be emperor. Her name is “Agrippina.”
Agrippina is George Frideric Handel’s story about the wife of Emperor Claudius who manages to place her volatile teenage son Nero on the throne with the use of shocking and sometimes darkly comic plotting.
The opera premiered in Venice in 1709 at the end of Handel’s three-year visit to Italy.
According to handelhouse.org, “Agrippina ran for twenty-seven performances during the carnival season in Venice and secured its international reputation. Handel reportedly composed the work in only three weeks.”
Ironically, the opera is set with a joyous text that accompanies the characters as they descend into darkness.
This is the first time Opera Omaha has presented Agrippina. The striking new production features a charismatic cast, most of whom will make their debut with the opera in this production.
Audiences will enjoy an original edition of the opera by early music specialist and conductor Stephen Stubbs and stage director James Darrah.
Betsye Paragas, Director of Community Relations for Opera Omaha, said this is a rare opportunity to see and hear a Baroque masterpiece.
The period of Baroque music in history extends from 1600 to about 1750. ClassicsforKids.com defines Baroque music as, “tuneful and very organized with melodies that tend to be highly decorated and elaborate. Conflict and contrast between sections in a piece and between instruments are common, and the music can be quite dramatic.”
Lead singers in the production include Peabody Southwell as Agrippina, Jennifer Rivera as Nerone, Jamie-Rose Guarrine as Poppea, Nathan Medley as Ottone and Hadleigh Adams as Claudio.
The production will be sung in Italian with English subtitles. Agrippina runs approximately three hours with one intermission.
“This is a dark comedy filled with ambition and seduction performed by a group of young and vibrant dynamic artists in collaboration with Opera Omaha,” Paragas said.