Opera Modo Presents Orpheus and The Underworld 5/23-5/26
Detroit, May 6, 2019 – Opera MODO will close its 2018-19 season with a fiery production of Orpheus and the Underworld, an English translation and wild interpretation of Jacques Offenbach’s comic operetta, Orphée aux enfers.
What happens when a bunch of Broadway’s most famous characters get together to tell the story of Orpheus’ journey to the Underworld? Why, a hilarious romp through Heaven and Hell, of course! Paradise and purgatory are featured as two of musical theater’s most polarizing shows: Xanadu and Cats. A campy cast of Broadway characters carry the sizzling drama, including Roxie Hart, Dolly Levi, Joseph (and his amazing, technicolor dream coat), Lucy from Avenue Q, Annie Oakley, Anita from West Side Story, Alexander Hamilton, Dorothy Gale, and more!
Monika Essen joins the MODO team to direct and design this far-out musical farce. Essen was the recipient of a 2018 Wilde Award for Best Opera/Director for her work on MODO’s La Cenerentola, a production for which she designed and directed. She also designed Michigan Opera Theatre’s Frida in 2015, which is now being produced in Opera Houses across the country, most recently to critical acclaim at Florida Grand Opera, and next to open The Atlanta Opera’s 2019-20 season.
“When I heard that Opera MODO was doing a show that I’ve always wanted to do, I exclaimed, “Sign me up!” Said Essen. “While discussing concepts of Heaven and Hell with Danielle [Opera MODO’s founder and artistic director], I told her that the musical Cats was my idea of Hell, and it all spiraled from there. So, look forward to some madcap fun with all the gods you learned about in high school transformed into characters from your favorite, or least favorite, Broadway musical.”
The cast includes Brad Lieto (Orpheus), Braun Oldenkamp (Pluto/Aristeus), Anna Valcour (Euridice), Jacob Surzyn and Ben King Quale (Jupiter), Luke Hodgson (John Styx), Kathyrn Linzmaier (Mercury), Aaron W. von Allmen (Mars), Madeleine Goschlich (Diana), Beth Mitchell and Kimberly Hann (Public Opinion), Christina Swanson (Venus). Calebria Gisselle (Juno), Kurt Clare (Apollo), Madelynn Guerra (Minerva), Katie Akers (Cupid), and the chorus featuring Lauren Alo, Timothy Hiemstra, Stephanie Herman, Steph Bedore, Jake Rydell, and Vanessa Fry (Dance Captain). Monika Essen directs, Steven McGhee conducts, Lauren Lenz assistant directs, and Elaina Ciccone assistant stage manages.
Tickets are available at three price points: VIP at $40, General Admission at $25, and Student Admission at $15. Tickets may be purchased online at http://www.operamodo.com/.
Orpheus and the Underworld
Performed at the Jam Handy, 2900 E. Grand Boulevard, Detroit, 48202
Thursday, May 23, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, May 24, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 25, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, May 26, 2