College Opera Theater Ensemble presents a weekend of double opera bill “La Favola d’Orfeo” and “Ariadne”

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Opera banner of a wolf and snake.MIAMI--- The New World School of the Arts Opera Theatre Ensemble will present A double bill of two twentieth century operas based on Greek plays: La Favola d'Orfeo by Alfredo Casella and Ariane by Bohuslav Martinü, written in 1932 and 1958 respectively. Favola d'Orfeo is the legendary story of Orpheus, with a different ending from other operatic versions; Orfeo, after saving Euridice from the Underworld, loses her a second time, curses women, and is killed by Bacchantes.

Ariane is a surrealist version of the myth of Theseus, Ariadne, and the Minotaur. In this version dream-like ambiguity prevails with Ariadne in love with the Minotaur, who is the reflection of Theseus' other self. Directed and produced by NWSA music faculty member Rodney Miller, these fascinating and beautiful premiers will be featured in a unique fantasy production incorporating multimedia and puppets, accompanied by the NWSA Opera Orchestra under the direction of NWSA music faculty member Alfred Gershfeld.
 
The back-to-back short operas will be presented at Miami Dade College North Campus, William and Joan Lehman Theater on April 7 at 7:30 PM and April 8 at 2:00 PM. 11380 NW 27 Avenue, Miami. General admission is $10 / Students and seniors $5. Tickets can be purchased at http://nwsa.mdc.edu.
 
The Opera Theatre Ensemble at New World School of the Arts is comprised of a select group of undergraduate students, who were chosen for this performance program, based on their potential to become successful professional performers. NWSA is one of the only colleges in Miami that casts productions exclusively from its undergraduate students, offering them the unique opportunity to perform on stage with sets, costumes, and a full orchestra. NWSA presents a fully staged opera each year, in addition to opera scenes, concerts, and recitals. Because of these special performances, NWSA students graduate with the ability to compete for graduate study scholarships and young artist programs, making the program an invaluable learning experience.

At New World School of the Arts, music students receive one-on-one instruction from accomplished musicians and grow through disciplined guidance and training as they develop their personal style and repertoire. Through its educational partnerships, NWSA’s audition-based programs, accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance, Music, Theater and Art and Design, offer the high school diploma as well as the BFA and BM college degrees. Areas of concentration in music include: composition, performance, instrumental and piano.
 
Alfred Gershfeld holds advanced degrees in conducting and violin performance from the Kishnev and Moscow Conservatories in the former Soviet Union. Prior to immigrating to the United States, Maestro Gershfeld was conductor of the Moldavian Chamber and Symphony Orchestras and the Moscow Bolshoi Theater. In 1977 he was elected Honored Artist of the Moldavian Republic. He has returned frequently to Moscow to conduct. Currently Alfred Gershfeld serves as Associate Professor of Conducting and Director of Orchestras at the New World School of the Arts in Miami. He has appeared as guest conductor in many cities and universities throughout the United States and Europe. He has conducted several performances of Russian opera for the Sarasota Opera Association. He is the composer of the children’s opera “Karlson on the Roof” which received its U.S. premiere performance at the Sarasota Opera House. Gershfeld is also the Director of the Anna Maria Island Community Orchestra and Chorus, has been the Principal Conductor of the Alhambra Community Orchestra since 2009, and has served as Artistic Director of the Lake Placid Sinfoniettarr. He has appeared as guest conductor at the Jerusalem Academy of Music, the New York Music Festival, the Quad Cities Symphony, the Eastman School of Music, the Miami City Ballet, and the Naples Philharmonic.

Rodney Miller holds a Bachelor of Music from Birmingham- Southern College and a Master of Music in Vocal Performance from The University of Illinois, where he was a Creative and Performing Arts Fellow. Additionally, he was a member of the American Opera Center at Juilliard School of Music. Performing internationally in venues that include: the Munich Philharmonic, Teatro Comunale in Florence, the Holland Festival in Amsterdam, and Belles Artes in Mexico City. Mr. Miller’s repertoire ranged from baroque to contemporary. In the U.S., notable performances included: The National Symphony, Buffalo Philharmonic, Philadelphia Orchestra, Seattle Orchestra, Denver Symphony, New York Chamber Orchestra, Wolf Trap, Tanglewood, Boston Opera, and Hawaii Opera. He has performed 45 leading operatic roles and more than 50 concert and oratorio works. His recordings include Shostakovich Songs From Jewish Poetry with I usici de Montreal on Chandos Records, Con Flor y Canto by Rodriquez, and Lohengrin. Mr. Miller has forty years of teaching experience and his students have performed with numerous prestigious organizations worldwide.

About NWSA: A Florida center of excellence in the visual and performing arts, NWSA provides a comprehensive program of artistic, creative and academic development through a curriculum that reflects the rich multicultural state of Florida. With programs accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art, Dance, Music and Theater, NWSA offers four-year BFA and BM college degrees, as well as the high school diploma. Through its rigorous curriculum and conservatory-style teaching NWSA empowers its students to become leaders in the arts. New World School of the Arts was created by the Florida Legislature as a center of excellence in the performing and visual arts. It is an educational partnership of Miami Dade County Public Schools, Miami Dade College and the University of Florida.

About NWSA’s Music program: The National Association Schools of Music (NASM) accredited music curriculum at New World School of the Arts fosters creativity and develops musical growth. A faculty comprised of professional working musicians guide the coursework that includes music history, theory, sight singing and elective courses and ensembles, to name a few. In addition to the instrumental and vocal tracks, composition majors are afforded the guidance to discover their musical voices by having their works performed by live musicians. Annual performances in state-of-the-art venues include a fully staged annual College Opera Theater production and the NWSA Symphony Orchestra concert. Information about the NWSA Music program is available by calling 305-237-3622, by visiting http://nwsa.mdc.edu/ or by calling the main office at 305-235-3135.

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