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The Bluegrass Opera prepares second annual all-star Easter program

The Bluegrass Opera will take to the stage this March to present the second annual performance of Angela Rice’s Easter cantata Thy Will Be Done, a work the company premiered last year. This year’s performance will offer audiences several enhancements over last year’s outing. Returning Metropolitan Opera tenor and UK alumnus Gregory Turay will be joined by rising opera star Anthony Clark Evans, who recently won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions, as well as both the Giulio Gari and Mario Lanza Competitions. In addition, Rice has added several new numbers to the cantata, and a full orchestra will be used, with arrangements by celebrated Kentucky composer Joseph Baber (An American Requiem).

“We’re very excited about the way this piece is growing,” says Dr. Lorne Dechtenberg, Artistic Director of the Bluegrass Opera and pianist/conductor for the concert-style program, “and we’re honored to have the opportunity to share this new version with the community. While Greg [Turay] is clearly still the star, Joseph Baber’s orchestration allows the instrumental ensemble to be an equal player in the drama. We have a truly stellar cast, and our orchestra will be comprised primarily of Lexington Philharmonic members, so I couldn’t ask for a better ensemble of performers. Of course, we couldn’t bring these performers together without help from the community, so we’re elated that businesses like Fifth Third Bank have come on board to sponsor the program.”


Turay, who now resides in Lexington, won the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions at the age of 21, and has since been featured on many of the world’s top stages, including the New York City Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, English National Opera, and several times at the Met itself. Having amassed an impressive array of accolades, including the Richard Tucker Award and the George London Foundation Award, Turay has been hailed by the London Times as “one of the brightest natural talents to have emerged from the US in recent years.” And Rice’s musical footprint in Lexington is no less impressive: she has been Founder and Executive Director of the Ashland School of Music (where she also taught piano), a founding board member of the UK Friends of Music, a six-year member of the Lexington Philharmonic Board of Directors, and a member of the Executive Committee of the Lexington Opera Society – for two years chairing the Opera Workshop program alongside beloved former professor Gail Robinson.

The Bluegrass Opera is a 501(c)(3) non-profit performing arts company that specializes in the performance of new musical works for the stage – operas, musicals, and everything in between. It is the only professional company in the country that is dedicated exclusively to premiering and championing new works and that does not charge composers a fee to submit their music. Thy Will Be Done will take place on March 6th at 7:30 p.m. at Mary, Queen of the Holy Rosary Church (601 Hill N Dale Drive, Lexington, KY), and again on March 10th at 3 p.m. at Tates Creek Presbyterian Church (3900 Rapid Run Drive, Lexington, KY). General adult admission is $20, and children under 13 are free. Group rates are also available. Visit http://www.bluegrassopera.org or call 859-940-9379 for tickets.

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