Virginia Opera announces Opera in the Park on Sept. 15

NORFOLK, Va. (August 21, 2012) – Virginia Opera, The Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia, is excited to announce the 4th Annual Opera in the Park will take place at Town Point Park in Norfolk, Va., on Sept. 15. This year’s Opera in the Park is a landmark event, the first to feature the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, which will also play three of the Company’s 2012-13 Season operas.

The event, produced in conjunction with Festevents, will be free and open to the public of all ages and feature a casual, picnic-style atmosphere. Town Point Park will open at 6 p.m. and the concert begins at 7:30 p.m. This year’s Opera in the Park will include some of opera’s most beloved classics, like the overture from The Marriage of Figaro, “Va Pensiero” from Nabucco and Carmen’s “Habanera.”

“By being free and open to the public, Opera in the Park exposes thousands of Hampton Roads residents to some of opera’s greatest hits, as well as Virginia Opera’s upcoming season,” said Russell Allen, Virginia Opera’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “This event gives Virginia Opera an opportunity to be available – for free – to people of all ages in a casual, family-friendly environment.”

The concert will be conducted by Maestro Gerald Steichen and feature some of opera’s rising stars: soprano Heather Buck, tenor Chad Johnson, baritone David Pershall and mezzo-soprano Heather Johnson. Buck (Orphée 2012), Chad Johnson (Don Giovanni, 2010) and Pershall (Emerging Artist Program, 2008) have all previously performed with Virginia Opera and the trio can be seen together onstage as the doomed love-triangle leading Virginia Opera’s season opening production of The Pearl Fishers.

Virginia Opera is proud to partner with Wells Fargo Private Bank, sponsor of this year’s Opera in the Park. The Company would also like to thank VisitNorfolk and the City of Norfolk for their support. Event partners Prince Michel Winery of Leon, Va., and the Chatham Vineyards or Machipongo, Va., will have a selection of their wines available for purchase at the Park.

Attendees are welcome to bring lawn chairs, picnic supplies, and coolers with non-alcoholic beverages. Food and drink will also be available for purchase at the concert. Virginia Opera will also be raffling off a large selection of prizes, including tickets to Virginia Opera performances and other local arts venues, and restaurant gift certificates. Parking for Opera in the Park will be available in conveniently-located Norfolk City garages. The Tide, Norfolk’s light rail system, also has stops within walking distance.

For more information or for inquiries about media coverage of Opera in the Park, please call Anna Russell at 757.627.9545, ext. 3316, or e-mail

About Virginia Opera
Virginia Opera is in its 38th year of operation. The Company has a working budget of $6.4 million with over 40 mainstage performances in three markets, reaching nearly 60,000 attendees. In March of 1994 Virginia Opera was named The Official Opera Company of the Commonwealth of Virginia in recognition of the organization’s contribution to the Commonwealth and to the world of opera.

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