About Salon Operas
Upon attending his first Salon Opera – Mozart Flute (Magic Included) legendary theater icon Bob Brustein offered high praise: "…I’m sure Mozart would have been happy, too." Wendy Taucher Dance Opera Theater’s new Salon Opera Series, adapts comic classics, honoring the music as written while providing a context for today’s contemporary audience. It was Wendy’s love of music that led to the creation of these witty variations. Classic operas are continue to be performed world-wide because of their vibrant stories, complex characters and especially their truly spectacular popular-for-centuries-music. 
 
Salon Operas add an English language script into the mix, performing the arias, duets and ensembles in their original language. Wendy’s new spoken librettos combine with cleverly animated staging and great music, inviting the patrons to re-discover beloved classics or to simply enjoy them for the first time. Salon Opera performances elicit standing ovations from sell-out audiences made up of music lovers, arts patrons and first-time opera goers. Serious opera fans enjoy hearing great singing actors close-up and personal. First timers find themselves surprised to be enjoying a genre often thought of as static, stuffy or worse. Fellow professionals appreciate the creativity that is clearly inspired by and respectful of the composer’s vision. We bring the singers, you add the personal appearance. One act, many laughs, no assembly required.

Don Pasquale - No Fool Like an Old Fool - In English and Italian
Don Pasquale, Donizetti’s opera buffa, sees young lovers outwit their somewhat lecherous elderly uncle. Arranged marriage, servants delivering secret letters, disguised identity, and deliberate over acting all play into the plot. In this Salon Opera version, the action is condensed to 75 minutes. Sung in the original Italian, the plot is propelled by the presence of an invented 21st century talk show host, who interviews the four characters in English at intervals throughout the show. Helping to understand the lyrics of the delectable music, the combination of the English narrative with the luscious Italian, makes for a fun comic opera evening. Opera fans enjoy the close-up setting, with great voices heard in the unusually intimate tented theater. Salon Opera patrons new to opera often say it is the production's unexpected high comedy, sometimes lost in contemporary opera staging, but absolutely historically appropriate, they find most entertaining. Everyone loves the tunes. Like most of the opera buffa masterpieces, Pasquale has a plot that is almost impossible to follow, in any language. Twists, turns and trickery combine with laughter rolling right through to a happy ending. Pay attention! It’s worth the musical ride.


L'italiana Re-Mix: Rossini’s Take on Love, Sex & Disaster, in English & Italian, Condensed
Coming to a Pavilion Near you:  Rossini’s L’itaiana in Algeri spoken in real good English, sung in beautiful Italian, including standard measures of love, sex, disaster and rescue strategy.  Condensed.  We add the singers, you add the personal appearance.  One act, many laughs, 74 & 1/2 minutes, no assembly required.

Rossini’s plot – What is that nice Italian girl doing in Algiers? – Conceived, directed and choreographed by Wendy Taucher, Rossini’s buffo opera is sung in the original Italian with a new English setting by Taucher and David Richmond, with TJ Petty. 
 
From the composer who knew more about living well than any man in Italy--the same fella who gave us “Figaro, Figaro, Figaro, Figaro!” from The Barber of Seville, and the Lone Ranger’s theme song, from The William Tell Overture.  This light hearted reinterpretation of Rossini’s eternal themes brings a contemporary understanding, keeping the music’s brilliance at the fore. 
 
Join our dazzling cast of singing actors as they bring verve, sophistication and operatic virtuosity to the performance, an exhilarating combination of low fun and very high notes in our intimate setting.  Suitable for all audiences, imperative for some.  You know who you are.
 
Rossini was one of the happiest composers opera ever knew.  He claims to have cried only three times in his life:  once when an opera of his failed, upon hearing Paganini play for the first time, and at a boating party when a truffled turkey fell overboard.  Our kind of guy.  And yours.  Come.  Enjoy.  Live well.

Impresario Now!
90% Musicale, Very Mozart Most of the Time

A full-tilt, cheeky collision of The Producers and A Chorus Line, with a sparkling new English script, featuring the original four tunes and beloved Italian oldies from Figaro, Don G and Cosi by that hitmeister of the 1780's top forty charts, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.  Laughs probable, applause compulsory.
 
You’ll enjoy a very now version of Mozart's comic singspiel Der Schauspieldirektor with fashionista costumes, dueling sopranos, battling baritones, a libidinous backer and one very broke producer.  The same old story, brand new. 
 
You’ll meet, and learn to love and loathe: Vinnie Birdwhistle – Heartbroken Tenor, sopranos Isolde Goldentrill and Swanhilda Silverspiel – one on the way up, one on the way out, Drusilla Kronensprech – a Mezzo with a Method, as well as Donaldo Largesse Angelgelt, Swifty Frank and his Faithless Companion Buddenbrooks Buff, Frederico Goldentrill Barihunk Trouble Incarnate, and Tristana Straight, all weird in their own way. You won’t see Wolftreudle Birdwhistle but you’ll find out why. See It Now – Satire Lowers Cholesterol. 

Mozart Flute (Magic Included)
Mozart Flute (Magic Included) mirrors the Maestro’s original Singspiel, which one might as well call an eighteenth century Viennese musical comedy. A simple little tale, the story features good guys, bad guys, mystics, monsters, magic, the eternal quest for love and the meaning of the universe. Happily, good triumphs over evil, but not before a few twists, turns, trills and thrills.  
 
One would be remiss if we don’t mention Mozart’s collaborator, librettist and star Emanuel Schikaneder. No fool he, Schikaneder and Mozart created four great arias for his character Papageno. Plus creating the entire plot so that it hinges on Papageno’s charmingly befuddled truisms. Back to Vienna, or just outside, to a villa where Mozart, Schikaneder and a frisky group of singers convened to invent Die Zauberflote. Urban (or should we say ‘opera’) myth has it that when Schikaneder first heard Mozart’s setting of the famous Papageno/Papagena ‘eleven o’clock duet, Schikaneder yelled down into the orchestra: "Hey Mozart, that’s all wrong, they have to stutter." And so they do. If you know the duet, you get the point, if you don’t know, you’ll get it once you hear it and enjoy it even more. Salon Opera’s Flute keeps this gleeful spontaneity going, with very bad bad guys, very good good guys and sublime singing of sublime songs.
 
Mozart Flute (Magic Included) incorporates a new English script that propels Papageno on his journey, while he pipes, sings and dances his way thru the mysteries of the cosmos.  Sung in the original German, the intricately paced scenes continue the narrative through well-known, mouth-watering tunes, detailed movement, evocative stage pictures and three simple ladders.  The Queen of the Night and her Three Ladies do their best to thwart the good guys, but even her two famous, very high arias fail to do the trick.  Mozart’s score is thrilling, scrumptious and witty in all the right places, making for a family-friendly, brilliantly told tale.  Cry, laugh and wonder while our hero wanders his way to enlightenment. 

Opera Laughing!
Mozart, Puccini, Verdi & a Little bit of Broadway

For the uninitiated, funny opera may seem like a stretch, but opera fans know better. The masters of the form wrote plenty of musical chuckles, and it wasn’t an accident. They knew their theater and their comedy and used the music to meld the two. A pianist and four singers bring us a array of chuckles, guffaws and giggles. The Master-of-Ceremonies adds to the commotion, using actual facts – from the sublime to the riduclous--to illustrate the scenes and songs. Just because we can, Mozart, Puccini and Verdi are joined by some of Broadway’s best. Opera Laughing is great for the entire family and works well for matinees, galas, clubs and private parties.  All you need are chairs, a piano and music lovers who enjoy laughing out loud!

If Opera be the Food of Love, Eat On
Eat, Drink & Be Merrily Entertained

If Opera Be the Food Of Love, Eat On is cabaret style journey through opera favorites with a couple of Broadway tunes thrown in for good measure. A tonge-in-cheek master-of-ceremonies talks opera history (or should we say gossip?), translations, food and wine. Four singers and a pianist bring on the best in four languages, plenty in English. A couple of heart-breaking opera melodies add contrast and flavor. 
 
Speaking of flavor, vocalizing can be paced to take place before, after or even during the meal. Event planners work with the chef, sommelier and the company to design perfectly paced experience. Incorporating food, wine, love songs and drinking ditties makes for a great date night. And yes, we take requests. 

[In Development]
Opera Rocks
For Kids & Other People

Opera Rocks!  Opera Demystified, Creativity Illuminated
Opera Rocks honors opera classics by exploring their musical construction, great storytelling, vibrant characters and virtuosic singing. Based on some of opera’s best loved scenes, Opera Rocks presents arias and ensembles as originally created, followed by new arrangements sung in English and arranged in varied musical styles. An educational spoken script is disguised in cheeky banter, keeping the action going and the learning fresh.

Opera Rocks!  Classic Originals, Inventive Variations
Featuring Mozart, Puccini, Verdi and Donizetti, Opera Rocks illuminates the composer’s intentions as first written. New musical arrangements based on varied styles including Jazz, Rap, Rock and Broadway – with lyrics translated into English – follow each classic scene. Opera Rocks’ theatrical process emphasizes the composer’s successfully realized intentions and – with playful rearrangements – opens windows that highlight individual creativity.  

Opera Rocks!  Designed for School Tours, Opera Company Special Events & Family Matinees
Created by a team of experienced professionals with in-depth musical, theatrical and arts-in-education experience, Opera Rocks is designed to provide an upbeat and thought provoking experience for children and adults alike. The cast consists of four singers:  soprano, mezzo soprano, tenor and baritone, with a pianist. Opera Rocks can be performed on-stage or in any space large enough to provide a small playing area and seat the audience. Costumes are evocative and the work is performed without a set. This structure makes Opera Rocks' simplicity and portability keep fees relatively low and attractive to potential bookers at schools and concert venues. The Opera Rocks score is ideal for university and professional opera company apprentice programs to produce and tour in their own areas. 


The Barber of Seville in English & Italian
With Color Commentary by Beaumarchais, Mozart, Rossini & Professor Donavon Dietz

Rossini’s well-known hero has not one, but two famous bio-operas. This one was written second, but takes place first – historically speaking – that is. This Salon Opera version, The Demon Barber of Rossini, invents Figaro’s alter ego, in the form of an English speaking, non-singing raconteur. Just to confuse matters, the opera is based on a French trilogy, banned in Vienna about a Spanish Count played by a bunch of New Yorkers, premiering on Martha’s Vineyard. Are you keeping up?  An no, this is not The Marriage of Figaro (that’s by Mozart), but yes, it is the one with the famous comic aria, featuring the name – you guessed it – Fi-Ga-Ro!  All in the style of a silent move, except it isn’t. Let the games begin.

[In Development]
Broadway Brunch
Broadway Brunch is a cabaret-style event, featuring a selection of Broadway’s beloved favorites numbers, performed by Broadway veterans. Joining the four singers is a Broadway pianist and a master-of-ceremonies, who keeps things moving, cracking-wise, and indulging in a little theater-world patter. This show can be customized with a bit of advance planning. If you prefer supper to brunch, that’s OK too.

 

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