A C ntony leopatra

Opera Company of Philadelphia
The School District of Philadelphia
Samuel Barber’s
ntony &
Final Dress Rehearsal
Monday, March 15, 2010 at 7:00 p.m.
at the Perelman Theater
A Family Guide to
Pennsylvania’s standards in education call for students to show what they know and
are able to do and children need to share what they have discovered or learned. Thus, the title
of our program is Sounds of Learning™. It reflects our belief that children must be actively
engaged in sharing ideas.
The Sounds of Learning™ workbook and teacher guide will integrate with local core
literacy curriculum in many ways. Just as opera is a uniquely integrated art, combining
orchestra, voice, literature, drama, and dance, Sounds of Learning™ is an interdisciplinary
and student-centered program. The goal of the Active Learning sections is to have your
children engaged in the process of self-teaching. They will be able to show how they have
gained insights into their learning by drawing, writing, and discussing the issues most
relevant to them. In this way, students demonstrate what they can do with what they know.
We believe the family is the most important foundation to learning. Let your kitchen
table become a classroom where your children can build their knowledge of opera and the
humanities. As you join in the teaching and learning process with your children, watch their
eyes sparkle. Opera is a communal celebration, so too should be your children’s education.
In reading the libretto, we suggest that you and your family members take turns
reading particular roles. Dr. Ellen Winner of Harvard’s Project Zero found that: “drama helps
to build verbal skills that transfer to new materials;” helps students in “reading readiness and
achievement;” and “oral and written language development.” (Journal of Aesthetic Education,
v34, #3/4, Fall/Winter, 2000.)
In preparing for the opera, we suggest you purchase New World Records’ excellent
recording of this opera.
Goals and Objectives of Sounds of Learning™
Improve literacy rates by using the opera’s libretto to teach courses across the curriculum
Understand the plot, characters, and their motivations
Learn something about the composer, and others involved in writing the opera
Know something of the historic and social context of the story
Know some key musical elements, recognize certain melodies, differentiate between voices
Understand the role music plays by expressing emotions and heightening the dramatic
• Understand the various elements of producing opera and the functions of those involved;
e.g. conductor, director, set designer, technical crew, etc.
• Develop the ability to make judgments about the opera, production, and performance.
• Relate incidents in the opera to those of the present day
Best Practices in Arts Education is sponsored
by Pennsylvania Alliance for Arts Education,
Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and
the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
Table of
Opera 101: Getting Ready for the Opera
Opera Company of Philadelphia
The Curtis Institute of Music
The Kimmel Center and the Perelman Theater
Opera Etiquette 101
Opera - Online!
A Brief History of Western Opera
Relating Opera to History: The Culture Connection
Native Son: Samuel Barber
Legendary Queen Cleopatra
Ruling Family: The Ptolomaic Dynasty
The Gods of Ancient Egypt
The Egyptian Goddess Isis
Egypt and the Pyramids
GAME: Connect the Opera Terms
Bard of Stratford: William Shakespeare
Words, words, words: Shakespeare’s Influence on the English Language
All the World’s a Stage: The Globe Theatre
Shakespeare at the Movies
Production Information
The Infamous Premiere of Antony and Cleopatra
Antony and Cleopatra: Plot Synopsis
There’s a Place for You at Settlement Music School
A Sampling of Careers in the Arts
So you want to sing like an Opera Singer
The Highs and Lows of the Operatic Voice
Careers in the Arts
The Subtle Art of Costume Design
Etymology: The Study of Words
Sequence of the Story
Make Your Own Synopsis
Recognizing Facts and Opinions
Supporting Your Opinions
Compose Your Own Review of Antony and Cleopatra
How to Write Poetry Like the Bard
Character Analysis and Motivation
Conflicts and Loves in Antony and Cleopatra
What Happens Next?/Alternate Endings
Ask Why?
Check out our website for additional content! Here you’ll find more information on
the opera, its themes, lessons, and links to
even more fascinating material. See page 7
for more details.
Opera Company of Philadelphia
Opera has played a vital part in
Philadelphia’s history. The first opera in
Philadelphia that we know of was the opera
Midas in 1769. Ever since then opera has been
so popular in Philadelphia that there have been
several opera companies in the city at the same
time! In fact, the Opera Company of Philadelphia
was created when the Philadelphia Grand Opera
Company and the Philadelphia Lyric Opera
Company joined in 1975. Since then, the Opera
Company of Philadelphia has honored the
city’s operatic traditions.
Each season the Opera Company
presents five different operas with singers from
all over the world. Three of the operas are given
in the beautiful, large-scale Academy of Music.
With just under 2,900 seats, the Academy is
the Opera Company’s home for grand opera.
Two smaller, more intimate operas are staged
in the Perelman Theater. With about 600 seats,
the Perelman, in the Kimmel Center for the
Performing Arts, is perfect for chamber and
modern operas.
Today, the Opera Company’s mission, or
core purpose, has three parts to it:
1: Deliver outstanding productions of classic
operas, often giving them in creative and
cutting-edge ways, and create exciting new
operas that people in Philadelphia’s socially and
culturally varied area will like.
We do this by hiring the best stage
designers. Sets might be in the Company’s
Production Center in the Tacony area of
Philadelphia. Sometimes the Opera Company
partners with another company to build new
sets and costumes, or rents a production from
another company.
The Opera Company supports creating
new American operas, too. In recent seasons
three new operas have been seen at OCP:
Margaret Garner by Richard Danielpour,
Cyrano by David DiChiera, and Ainadamar by
Agentinian composer Osvaldo Golijov. Tea: A
Mirror of Soul by Chinese composer Tan Dun
premieres in February 2010.
2: Find the best young, up-and-coming singers
and give them the chance to sing with some of
the best singers in the world
We find the best young singers in our
own backyard at two of the best opera schools
in the world - The Curtis Institute of Music and
the Academy of Vocal Arts. Singers from both
schools have sung right along side stars like
Denyce Graves and Nathan Gunn.
3: Create informative student and adult programs
that will introduce opera to newcomers and that
both long-time and new opera fans will enjoy.
Each season over 5,000 students from
the Delaware Valley attend the opera through
the Sounds of Learning™ program. The Company
also hosts community recitals and lectures,
technology-based internet events, and more.
For over 30 years the Opera Company of
Philadelphia has brought audiences outstanding
production quality, artistry and educational
opportunities. A strong blend of traditional and
innovative programming will continue to
ensure the excitement of opera in Philadelphia.
Soprano Ermonela Jaho and tenor Roger Honeywell in
Jun Kaneko’s stylized production of Puccini’s Madama
Photo: Kelly & Massa Photography
1. Find out more about the Opera Company of Philadelphia
at our website: www.operaphila.org
Want to learn more about the great history of opera in
Philadelphia? Visit www.frankhamilton.org
The Curtis Insitute of Music
The Curtis Institute of Music is widely
considered one of the world's leading
conservatories, or a school that specializes in
teaching its students about the arts; in this
case, music!
In keeping with Curtis' philosophy that
students "learn most by doing," the Institute
offers over one hundred public performances a
year, including orchestra concerts, operas, as
well as solo and chamber music recitals.
Mary Louise Curtis Bok (1876-1970) was a
Philadelphia writer, philanthropist and music
lover. She had donated money to Philadelphia’s
community-based Settlement Music School, but
wanted to create a school that would train
exceptionally gifted young musicians for
careers as performing artists on the highest
professional level. She fulfilled that mission by
forming The Curtis Institute of Music, named
after her music-loving father Cyrus Curtis,
which first opened its doors in 1924.
This distinctive approach to musical
training has produced an impressive number
of notable artists, from such legends as
composers Leonard Bernstein and Samuel
Barber to current stars tenor Juan Diego Flórez,
conductor Alan Gilbert, violinist Hilary Hahn,
and pianist Lang Lang.
Today Curtis follows many of the same
principles set forth by Mrs. Bok: the school
provides full-tuition scholarships to all of its
students, ensuring that admissions are based
solely on artistic promise. A Curtis education is
uniquely tailored to the individual student,
with personalized attention from its celebrated
faculty with the added bonus of unusually
frequent performance opportunities.
Students have the option to pursue
either a Diploma or Bachelor of Music degree.
Voice students can also pursue a Master of
Music degree or Professional Studies
Currently, there are 159 students from
all over the world enrolled at The Curtis
Institute - including those from thirteen foreign
countries. They have the chance to study with
Curtis's faculty, which includes some of the
most important music teachers and performers
like composer Richard Danielpour, violist
Roberto Díaz, voice coach Mikael Eliasen, pianst
and conductor Leon Fleisher, violinist Pamela
Frank, pianist Gary Graffman, composer
Jennifer Higdon, violinsit Ida Kavafian, pianist
Seymour Lipkin, voice teacher Marlena
Kleinman Malas, double bassist and composer
Edgar Meyer, conductor Otto-Werner Mueller,
voice teacher Joan Patenaude-Yarnell, and
many of the principal players of The
Philadelphia Orchestra.
Given the school's small size, Curtis
alumni have had a amazingly deep influence on
the musical world. Sixteen percent of the
important principal section leader in America's
top twenty-five orchestras and four music
directorships in the top fifty are held by Curtistrained musicians, and more than sixty
alumni have performed with the Metropolitan
The Opera Company of Philadelphia is
thrilled to be able to partner with The Curtis
Insitute of Music by collaborating with the
conservatory to present some of the best upand-coming singers in complete operas along
side today’s brightest stars in productions at
the Academy of Music and the Perelman
Theater at the Kimmel Center for the
Performing Arts.
1. Find out more about the Curtis Institute online at
Shuler Hensley
and the cast of the
Curtis Opera
Theatre's Wozzeck
Photo by: L. C. Kelley
The Kimmel Center and the
Perelman Theater
center requires exceptional acoustics, stage
design, lighting, and various other details. In
order to build such a structure, the city employed
a large staff, including an architecture firm
(Rafael Viñoly Architects PC), an acoustical design
team led by Russell Johnson of Artec Consultants,
Inc., and a team of theater consultants led by
Richard Pilbrow and David I. Taylor.
The Kimmel Center occupies a complete
city block at the corner of Spruce and Broad
Streets along Philadelphia’s Avenue of the Arts. It
is close to the Academy of Music, the University of
the Arts, The Curtis Institute of Music, and many
other performing venues. It is home to the
Philadelphia Orchestra, but its proximity to other
arts institutions makes it easily accessible for use
by local performing arts organizations, like the
Opera Company of Philadelphia, and touring
groups, too.
“Kimmel Center Inc.’s mission is to operate a
world-class performing arts center that engages
and serves a broad audience from throughout
the Greater Philadelphia region.”
For many years, the world-renowned
Philadelphia Orchestra shared a performing
space with many of the other arts organizations in
the Philadelphia area. Between rehearsals and
performances, there was not enough stage time to
accommodate all of the ensembles and touring
shows that Philadelphia attracts. The orchestra
needed a new home. The local government also
wanted to construct a new venue for the city’s
arts organizations and touring presenters. After
years of hard work, the Kimmel Center project
came to fruition with its ground breaking on
November 12, 1998 and its opening on December
16, 2001. In the end, the total cost was
$235,000,000 including land and building costs.
In addition to the standard features of a
traditional public building, a performance
The Kimmel Center’s interior is awe
inspiring. A 150-foot glass half-cylinder encloses
the entire complex and gives guests the feeling
that they are outdoors even though they are not.
The two theaters, Verizon Hall (home of the
Philadelphia Orchestra with 2,547 seats) and
the Perelman Theater (for chamber music and
smaller-scale dance and dramatic performances
with 651 seats) appear to be two separate
buildings within the complex. Verizon Hall is
situated toward the back of the center, and the
smaller Perelman Theater is in the front. The
Perelman Theater is set on a slight angle and
topped with a public garden on its roof!
The interior of Verizon Hall is shaped like
the body of a violin. It is smoothly contoured and
made of light wood. In contrast, the Perelman
Theater is essentially a large cube. Although that
may sound boring, the theater is quite
extraordinary in its transformability. The goal in
creating this smaller theater was to accommodate
both experimental and traditional performances
of theater, dance, chamber recitals, and various
other events. According to the Kimmel Center web
site, Richard Pilbrow said in an interview
regarding the construction of the Perelman
Theater, “The challenge of building the Perelman
Hall was a unique one: to create a superb hall for
chamber music that could be changed very
rapidly into a small theatre for dance and drama
at minimum operating cost. This is intended both
to optimize the utilization of the hall and minimize
rental costs.”
To make these rapid changes possible, the
stage is on a turntable. The audience seating may
be expanded to wrap around the side of the stage
for chamber music, or be made to just be in front
for theatrical performances. There is an orchestra
pit that may be opened, or covered to produce a
flat floor. An entire set design can be waiting in
the back and then turned around in a matter of
minutes to change the room from a concert hall to
the set of a dance or theater piece.
Here are some fun facts about the
Kimmel Center that will leave your mind
The center has:
29,054 total cubic yards of concrete
(equivalent to 92 miles of 5-foot wide sidewalk)
317,000 masonry blocks
3,700 total tons of structural steel
2,281 tonnage of rebar (reinforcing steel bars)
61,048 linear feet of structural steel tubing
supporting the glass roof
1,400 tons of steel in the arches supporting the
glass end walls
156,677 square feet (3.6 acres) of glass glazing
660 tons of weights holding glass end walls
9,300 gallons (860,000 square feet) of paint
594 doors
2.5 miles (13,184 linear feet) of handrails
14 elevators
144 bathroom fixtures (86 for women and 58
for men)
135,000 total cubic yards of dirt were removed
from the construction site at Broad and Spruce Streets
Now that’s dreaming BIG!
courtesy of www.kimmelcenter.org
(left) A view of
the exterior of
the Perelman
Theater in the
Kimmel Center.
(far left)
The Kimmel
Center as seen
from Broad
Photos: Michael
The audience
arrives for a
inside the
Richard Doran,
Courtesy, Chamber
Orchestra of
Opera Etiquette 101
There’s nothing quite as exciting as attending
the opera in a professional theater like the Perelman
Theater at the Kimmel Center for the Performing
Arts. You will attending a dress rehearsal of the
opera Antony and Cleopatra.
Unlike actors on television or in the movies,
performers onstage are very aware of the audience.
They want to share their love of performing with you.
Everything you do in the audience affects what
happens on stage. You can show them how much
you appreciate their work and the opportunity to
come to the rehearsal by being as quiet as possible.
So, please refrain from talking out of respect for the
cast, musicians, the entire production team, and
everyone in the theater. Give the artists and the
production your full attention!
The picture on this page shows several patrons and famous
opera characters on their way to attend an opera at the theater.
Now picture yourself in their shoes. On a separate piece of
paper, write a few words on what you think the trip to the
opera will be like. You may want to mention going to the
Kimmel Center or visiting Perelman Theater, attending the
opera. What will you wear? How will you and your classmates
act? At what time will you meet your classmates? How may
classmates will attend? Will you have a special dinner before
the opera? If so, where? Will the opera be exciting and
entertaining? Share your thoughts here and compare your
stories with your classmates.
Here’s a list of do’s and don’ts so that everyone in
the theater can enjoy the opera:
Please Do...
• Applaud after the arias; you can shout “Bravo!” for the
men and “Brava!” for the women.
• Enter and exit the theater in an orderly fashion.
• Please use the bathrooms before the rehearsal begins or
at intermission.
• Turn off your cell phones and all electronic devices.
• Enjoy the rehearsal. You’ve worked too hard preparing
for the rehearsal not to!
Don’t Forget...
• No food, gum and beverages are allowed inside the
• Photographs or video footage may not be taken during
the performance.
• No talking or whispering during the performance.
• No shoving, jumping, running, or spitting in the theater.
• Please obey the theater ushers and staff.
• Keep all objects to yourself. If you throw something, you
might hurt someone and cause a disruption in performance.
It is grounds for removal from the auditorium.
OPERA – Online!
Many of you may be studying music in your
schools or privately. Where do you go if you
want to learn more about Antony and
Cleopatra, opera singers, opera-related topics
and experience opera more frequently? Visit
OCP’s website at:
Here you can find more information about Antony
and Cleopatra and all the operas presented by the
Opera Company at absolutely no cost!
Opera Right in Your Email Inbox!
Another great way to learn more is to sign up for the free
weekly Sounds of Learning™ email list. Email your name,
school and age to [email protected] and each
week we’ll send you an opera video “clip of the week”
with famous opera singers singing great arias and
ensembles all throughout the summer. Some will be funny,
some will be thrilling, some will be dramatic, all if it will be
exciting! Also included in the email will be the website of
the week. We’ll feature links to singers’ websites, music
links, other great music and opera websites. You can build a
whole library of video clips to go back to again and again!
Share the clips and links with your family and friends.
Don’t forget to check out our Sounds of
Learning™ blog at http://operaphillysol.blogspot.com.
The blog will allow you to discuss the opera
with students throughout the tri-state area!
Log onto the blog and share your thoughts
and views about the opera, the music, the set,
the singers, the Academy of Music, coming to
center city Philadelphia, the email list clip of
the week and more! Other students participating
in Sounds of Learning™ from Pennsylvania,
New Jersey, and Delaware want to hear what you
have to say! Post your comments by going to:
See rehearsal photos on our website at
http://www.operaphila.org/production/behind-scenes. Log
on and see our Behind the Scenes area to see how
a production develops from the first day of
rehearsal to opening night!
Also, you can download extra copies of the
Sounds of Learning™ guide and past guides from
this page as well. All of this content is provided for
If you’re online, check out our myspace and
facebook pages, too. Just search for Opera Company of
A Brief History of
Western Opera
Theatrical performances that use music, song and dance
to tell a story can be found in many cultures. Opera is
just one example of music drama.
In its 400-year history each opera has been
shaped by the times in which it was created and
tells us much about those who participated in the
art form as writers, composers, performers, and
audience members.
The first works to be called operas were
created in Italy at the end of the sixteenth century.
They were inspired by a group of intellectuals known
as the Camerata who, like many thinkers of their
time in the late Renaissance, admired the culture of
the ancient Greeks. They proposed the invention of
a new type of musical theater that would imitate
Greek drama’s use of music.
The result was a series of operas based on
Greek myths, starting with Dafne by Jacopo Peri in
1598. The most famous work of this early period is
Claudio Monteverdi’s Orfeo (1607), based on the
myth of Orpheus. These early operas had all the
basic elements that we associate with opera today,
including songs, instrumental accompaniments,
dance, costumes, and scenery.
These early operas were
performed in the courts of Italian
noblemen, but soon opera became Claudio Monteverdi
popular with the general public. 1567-1643
Europe at the time had a growing middle class with
a taste for spectacular entertainment.
As opera’s popularity grew, so did the
complexity of operas and the level of spectacle. Many
opera houses had elaborate machinery that could be
used to create special effects such as flying actors
and crumbling buildings. There was much debate
about whether an excess of visual elements in opera
detracted from the quality of the music and drama.
Some people even worried that too much comedy in
opera could lead to immorality among the public!
During the period from about 1600 to 1750,
the Baroque period in music, Italian opera spread
across Europe. In fact the Italian style of opera was
so popular that even though other countries and
regions often had their own traditions of musical
drama, the Italian form was usually preferred.
George Frederick Handel was a German-born
composer who lived and worked in England, but his
operas such as Julius Caesar (1724) were in the
Italian language and used an Italian style of music.
The only nation to develop a national tradition to
A tense scene from Act II of Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. (l-r: bass Richard Bernstein, baritone Simone Alberghini
and sopranos Christine Brandes and Mary Dunleavy.)
Bass Kevin Glavin gets a close shave from baritone
Roberto DeCandia in Rossini’s The Barber of Seville.
rival the Italian was France, where operas often
included ballets inserted into the story. JeanBaptiste Lully and Jean-Philippe Rameau are the
most famous French Baroque opera composers.
By the middle of the seventeenth century
Europe was changing. The growing middle class was
more influential than ever, and people were starting
to talk about new forms of government and
organization in society. Soon the American and
French Revolutions (1776 and 1789) would seek to
establish the first modern democracies.
Music was changing, too. Composers
abandoned the Baroque era’s complicated musical
style and began to write simpler music with more
expressive melodies. Opera composers could write
melodies that allowed characters to express their
thoughts and feelings more believably. One of the
first operas to use this new style was Cristoph
Willibald Gluck’s Orfeo ed Euridice (1762).
With the new democratic sentiments came
interest in operas about common people in familiar
settings, rather than stories from ancient mythology.
A good example is Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s
The Marriage of Figaro (1786), in which a servant
outsmarts a count. Several of Mozart’s operas
remain among the most popular today. They include
Figaro, Don Giovanni (1788), Così fan tutte (1790),
and The Magic Flute (1791).
In the nineteenth century operas continued to
grow more diverse in their subject matter, forms,
and national styles. The Italian tradition continued
in the bel canto movement. Operas written in this
style, which means “beautiful singing”, included
arias with intricate ornamentation, or combinations
of fast notes, in the melodies. The most famous bel
canto composers are Vincenzo Bellini, Gaetano
Donizetti and Gioacchino Rossini, whose The
Barber of Seville (1816) is one of the most beloved
comic operas.
Later in the century the Romantic Movement
led many composers to take an interest their
national identities. As a result, operas in languages
other than Italian became more common, and new
works often reflected pride in a country’s people,
history and folklore. Among the operas that show
the growth of national traditions are Carl Maria von
Weber’s Der Freischütz (Germany, 1821), Mikhail
Glinka’s Ruslan and Lyudmilla (Russia, 1842) and
Georges Bizet’s Carmen (France, 1875). In Italy
Giuseppe Verdi composed in a bold, direct style,
and his operas, such as Nabucco and Macbeth, often
included elements of nationalism. In Germany
Richard Wagner took the Romantic style to the
extreme in an ambitious series of operas known
collectively as The Ring of the Nibelung (1876) based
on Norse mythology.
In the twentieth century opera became even
more diversified and experimental, to the point that
it sometimes became difficult to distinguish it from
other forms of musical theater. Some composers
such as Giacomo Puccini (La bohème, 1896),
Claude Debussy (Pelléas et Mélisande, 1902),
Richard Strauss (Salome, 1905), and Benjamin
Britten (Peter Grimes, 1945) continued to write
operas that were similar in many ways to those of
the nineteenth century. Others, horrified by the
destructive effects of World War I (1914-1919) and
other aspects of modern life, created works with
radically experimental and dissonant music. These
operas often explored topics that were either
disturbing (Wozzeck by Alban Berg, 1925) or
absurdist (The Rake’s Progress by Igor Stravinsky,
1951). American opera also came into its own in this
century, beginning with George Gershwin’s Porgy
and Bess (1935) which incorporated jazz and blues
styles of music. In the latter part of the century a
repetitive and hypnotic style known as minimalism
was exemplified in Phillip Glass’s Einstein on the
Beach (1976), a piece that would hardly be
recognized as an opera by earlier standards. The late
twentieth century even saw a return to some of the
traits of Romantic opera in works such as John
Corigliano’s The Ghosts of Versailles (1991).
Today, opera is a living art form in which both
new works and those by composers of the past
continue to be performed. It remains to be seen what
the future of opera will be, but if history is any
indication, it will be shaped by the creativity of
librettists, composers and other artists responding
the changing times in which they live.
Wolfgang Amadeus
Native Son:
Samuel Barber
West Chester
native, Samuel
Photo from the
Library of
Congress, LCUSZ62-42491
Carl Van
Osborne Barber
II was born on
March 9, 1910
in West Chester,
His father was a
doctor and his
mother was a
pianist. She was
not the only
musical one in
the family as
her sister was the legendary Metropolitan Opera
contralto Louise Homer. From his boyhood
home at 107 South Church Street, it was clear
from the very beginning that young Sam was
musically gifted.
He began studying piano when he was
barely six years old, wrote his first musical
composition at age seven; his first opera at ten.
He knew that music was his destiny. In a
famous letter to his mother the nine year old
musician wrote:
“Dear Mother: I have written to tell
you my worrying secret. Now don’t cry
when you read it because it is neither
yours nor my fault. I suppose I will have to
tell it now, without any nonsense. To begin
with I was not meant to be an athlete. I
was meant to be a composer, and will be
I’m sure. I’ll ask you one more thing.—
Don’t ask me to try to forget this unpleasant
thing and go play football.—Please—
Sometimes I’ve been worrying about this
so much that it makes me mad (not very).”
He continued on his path to become a
composer – when Barber was twelve he became
a church organist and at fourteen entered the
new music school that had recently opened in
Philadelphia: The Curtis Institute of Music. Here
he studied piano with Russian pianist Isabelle
Vengerova, composition with Italian violinist
and composer Natale Rosario Scalero, and
conducting with the legendary Fritz Reiner. He
also studied voice with Spanish-American
baritone Emilio de Gogorza and Barber’s
baritone voice was of such quality that he
considered becoming a professional singer.
While at Curtis he met his longtime companion
and occasional collaborator, Gian Carlo Menotti
in 1928.
After graduating, Barber went to Vienna
to study singing and traveled throughout
Europe thanks to winning the 1935 American
Prix de Rome. His recitals, radio broadcasts,
and a recording of his song “Dover Beach” for
voice and string quartet soon attracted the
attention of the days’ leading conductors
including, most famously, Arturo Toscanini. In
1938, when Barber was only 28 years old,
Toscanini directed the NBC Symphony
Orchestra in Barber’s “Adagio for Strings,”
which had been arranged from Barber’s String
Quartet op.11. The “Adagio for Strings” has
become his most recognizable and beloved
compositions, and has been used in films such
as Platoon, The Elephant Man, El Norte, and
Lorenzo’s Oil.
From 1939 to 1942, Barber taught
composition at The Curtis Institute of Music.
During World War II, Barber served in the Army
Air Corps, completing military training and
composing at home at night. During this time
he composed his Second Symphony, which was
originally titled Symphony Dedicated to the Air
Forces, and Commando March, which was written
especially for the United States Army. After the
war, Barber wrote his first ballet, Medea, for
Martha Graham’s dance company and was
commissioned to write vocal pieces such as
Knoxville: Summer of 1915, Mélodies passagères,
and the Hermit Songs.
Barber approached the Metropolitan
Opera about producing an opera he had been
writing with his partner Menotti, a celebrated
opera composer as well, as librettist. Using
Menotti’s story and libretto, Barber wrote his
first opera Vanessa, which opened in 1958 to
great success. It earned him the Pulitzer Prize
and election to the American Academy of Arts
and Letters. Riding on the success of Vanessa,
Barber and Menotti collaborated again in 1959
to write the short A Hand of Bridge.
With the opening of the new Lincoln
Center, the Metropolitan Opera turned to
Barber again to write the opera Antony and
Cleopatra to kick off their 1966 season in the
new opera house. Based on Shakespeare’s play
and with libretto, direction, and design by
famed opera director Franco Zeffirelli, the opera
was not well received. By all accounts, the
opera’s over-elaborate direction and mechanical
malfunctions were largely to blame. Believing
that the opera contained some of his best work,
Barber spent the next decade revising the piece
with Menotti’s help. In 1975 the revised version
was performed by the Juilliard School, with
Menotti directing a much more intimate,
musically developed, and shorter Antony and
Barber’s childhood
home at 107
South Church
Street in West
Chester, PA
The negative critical reaction to Barber’s
second opera weighed heavily on him.
Although he continued to write new music after
the 1966 premiere of the opera, including the
song cycles Despite and Still, which was first
performed by Leontyne Price, and “Three
Songs,” written for the German baritone
Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau, he was never to enjoy
the same acclaim that he had during the mid to
late 1950s. Yet his last major work, the Third
Essay for Orchestra was premiered in 1978 and
received much acclaim.
After Antony and Cleopatra, Barber suffered
from clinical depression, alcoholism and had
isolated himself. His relationship with Menotti
suffered as well. The two had lived together in
their home called Capricorn in Mount Kisco,
New York since 1943. The two began to grow
apart; Barber was a very private man and
Menotti was quite extroverted. They parted in
1973 and Capricorn was sold, much to
Barber’s dismay. He moved to an apartment in
New York City where he died of cancer in 1981
at the age of 70 with Gian Carlo Menotti at his
Samuel Barber will always be valued as
one of America’s most important and talented
composers. His gift for beautiful and
memorable melodies, colorful orchestrations,
and some of the most moving music ever
written will secure his place in musical history.
This marker is on display in
front of Barber’s childhood
home in West Chester, PA.
Photo: William Pfingsten,
May 31, 2008,
The Historical Marker Database
1. Learn more about Samuel Barber online at:
2. Learn more about West Chester Pennsylvania at
http://www.west-chester.com/ and
Where is Mount Kisco, New York? Can you find it on a
Legendary Queen
Cleopatra as
interpreted by
the artist
Cleopatra is
by far the most
Queen off all time,
but why? Although
historians portray
capable and popular
ruler, we tend to
imagine her through
Roman eyes. What is the first thing that comes to
mind when you hear the name Cleopatra?
made to him. This restored Cleopatra to the
throne. Even though Caesar and Cleopatra had a
son together, Caesar was already married so
under Egyptian customs Cleopatra married her
remaining brother.
Roman propaganda (originating with
Octavian) portrayed her as a perilous harlot
who practiced witchcraft and tricked men as
she grasped for power which was far beyond
what was proper for a woman. In the late first
century B.C. the poet Horace called her “A
crazy queen…plotting...to demolish the Capitol
and topple the (Roman) Empire.”
What kind of Pharaoh was Cleopatra?
After Cleopatra’s death she became a
“tragic heroine,” with love of Antony being her
fatal motivation. Over the course of the next
two millennia, paintings, plays and operas
focused on the details of her life and death but
still, can you ask yourself, who was Cleopatra?
The continuous struggle between
Cleopatra and her brother (also her husband)
Ptolemy XIII to rule as Pharaoh in Egypt was
not going as well as Cleopatra had hoped.
Ptolemy XIII had driven his sister from their
palace at Alexandria after Cleopatra’s attempt
to make herself the sole leader of the people.
Meanwhile, Julius Caesar arrived in
Alexandria in 48 B.C. At this time Rome and
Egypt were allies. Caesar thought it was
necessary to intervene in the family feud and
set up a peace meeting but Ptolemy XIII’s forces
refused to let Cleopatra back into Alexandria.
Cleopatra, now aware of Caesar’s
intervention smuggled herself into the palace
wrapped in a carpet. “She was clearly using all
her talents from the moment she arrived on the
world stage before Caesar,” says Egyptologist
John Fletcher.
Caesar had Ptolemy XIII drowned in the
Nile River because of a disrespectful gesture he
Julius Caesar died on March 15th 44 B.C.
With her ally gone Cleopatra disposed of her brother
and made her son Caesarion her new co-regent or
co-ruler. Such ruthlessness was not uncommon
in Egyptian politics in Cleopatra’s day; it was
necessary for her survival and that of her son.
Sources suggest that Cleopatra was very
popular among her own people. Since the time
of Alexander the Great’s general, Ptolemy I Soter,
all Alexandria-based rulers were ethnically
Greek. Cleopatra was one of the only rulers
since her predecessors to learn the Egyptian
language. Cleopatra identified herself as a truly
Egyptian pharaoh and in one of her self
portraits dated 35 B.C. she is called philopatris
meaning “she who loves her country.”
The Roman Empire was expanding rapidly
under Julius Caesar’s heir Octavian.
Cleopatra’s foreign policy was to maintain
Egypt’s independence by befriending Roman
General Mark Antony. Ancient sources
conclude that Mark Antony and Cleopatra did
love each other and that Cleopatra bore three
of his children, but the relationship was also
very useful to an Egyptian queen who wished
to expand and protect her empire.
In 33 B.C. Octavian managed to defeat
Mark Antony’s ships and because Cleopatra’s
ships withdrew from the battle unexpectedly,
he pursed them both into Egypt. Realizing that
all was in effect lost, and mistakenly thinking
that Cleopatra was already dead, Mark Antony
committed suicide. A few days later Cleopatra
and two of her trusted servants killed themselves
on August 12, 30 B.C., to escape the capture of
The story of the famous asp that killed
the queen has been passed on over the years.
That, along with the image of her death, more
than anything else, has given Cleopatra
Ruling Family
The Ptolemaic Dynasty
Did you know that Cleopatra was a
descendant of Alexander the Great?
belonged to the great ruling family Ptolemy
which governed during one of the most
influential and greatest dynastic eras in
history. The Ptolemies were a Greek family and
they ruled Egypt for generations, from 305 B.C.
to 30 B.C.
In 332 B.C., the legendary Greek king
Alexander the Great conquered Egypt with little
resistance from the Persian Empire (modern
day Iran) and was welcomed by the Egyptians
as a “deliverer.”
Ptolemy was a somatophylax, one of the
seven bodyguards who served as Alexander the
Great's generals and deputies. He was
appointed satrap (or governor) of Egypt after
Alexander's death in 323 B.C. In 305 B.C., he
declared himself King Ptolemy I, later known as
Soter (saviour). All male rulers from the
Ptolemic Dynasty took the name Ptolomy, while
all female rules took the name Cleopatra.
The Ptolemy ruling family based its
government on an Egyptian model and based it
in the new capital city of Alexandria. The city
was to showcase the supremacy and prestige of
Greek rule, and became a seat of learning and
culture, centered at the famous Library of
Alexandria. The Lighthouse of Alexandria lit the
way for the many ships which kept trade
flowing through the city. The Ptolemies made
commerce and revenue-generating enterprises,
such as papyrus manufacturing, their top
Greek culture did not replace traditional
Egyptian culture. The Ptolemies supported
the Egyptians time-honored traditions in an
effort to secure the loyalty and love of the
general public. They built new temples in
Egyptian style, supported traditional cults, and
portrayed themselves as pharaohs. Some
traditions merged, religious differences were
blended into new religious belief systems.
Some of the Greek and Egyptian gods merged
to become one such as Serapis, a god that was
merged from Hellenistic-Egyptian gods to
become a new god in antiquity. His most
renowned temple was the Serapeum of
Bust of
ancestor, the
Alexander the
The most famous member of the Ptolemy
line was the last queen, Cleopatra VII, known
for her role in the Roman political battles
between Julius Caesar and Pompey, and later
between Octavian and Mark Antony. Her
suicide at the conquest by Rome marked the
end of Ptolemaic rule in Egypt which became a
province of the Roman Empire in 30 B.C.
Cleopatra would go on to become as
legendary as her Greek ancestor who helped
establish the Ptolomies in Egypt, but it is she
who would outshine all of her other ancestors
and who cement her family’s place in the
history books.
1. Learn more about the Ptolomaic Dynasty by visiting the
Ancient Egyptian wing at the University of Pennsylvania
Museum of Anthropoloyg and Archaeology.
The Gods of
The Egyptian
god Atum in an
ancient drawing
First book of
respirations of
Usirur on display at the
Louvre in
Ancient Egypt
As the story
goes…In the beginning
there was only Nun.
Nun was the dark
waters of chaos; the
state of being without
order or organization.
One day, a hill called
Ben-Ben ascended from
the waters. On the top
of this hill stood the
first god; Atum. (Later
know as Atum-Ra or Ra
the sun god)
It is said that
Atum coughed and
spat out Shu, the god
of the air, and Tefnut,
the goddess of moisture.
Shu and Tefnut
First, there was Geb, the
god of the earth and then there was Nut, the
goddess of the sky. Shu lifted Nut up so that she
became a canopy over Geb.
Nut and Geb had four children named
Osiris, Isis, Seth and Nephthys. Nephthys was
Isis’ twin sister and guardian goddess of the
dead. Osiris was the king of the earth and Isis
was the queen. Osiris was a good king, and he
ruled over the earth for many years…
However, all was not well. Seth was jealous of his brother Osiris because he wanted to
be the ruler of the earth. He grew angrier and
angrier until one day he killed Osiris.
When Osiris died he crossed over into the
underworld and Seth remained on earth and
became king.
Osiris and Isis had one son called Horus.
Horus battled against Seth and regained the
throne. After that, Horus was the king of the
earth and Osiris was the king of the
The Egyptian Goddess
Throughout the opera we frequently hear
the name of the Egyptian goddess “Isis” being
called. She was worshipped throughout Egypt
and was considered to be the protectress of
women, mothers and children. She was also
known as the goddess of magic. She lived in a
time when the sun god Re (previously known as
Atum) was the most powerful but it is said that
she tricked Re into revealing his secret name
and in doing so, Isis obtained many of his
magical powers making her the most powerful
of the gods.
The story of Isis and Osiris is known
throughout Egypt as one of the most popular
tales in Egyptian mythology.
As you know from the previous article on
“The Gods of Ancient Egypt,” Seth killed Osiris
to become king. What you do not know is how
this all came about…
The first time that Seth killed Osiris, Isis
used her magical powers to bring her husband
back to life. When Seth heard this news he was
outraged and was determined to carry out the
deed in a way that Isis could not undo, and so
Seth killed Osiris again. Seth mutilated his
body into multiple parts, hiding them throughout
the desert so that Isis could not find them. Isis
did not give up; she spent years searching for
her husband’s scattered body. Eventually she
found all the pieces and magically brought
Osiris back to life. At this point, Isis becomes
pregnant with Osiris’ child but Osiris never
fully recovered from the wounds inflicted by
Seth and eventually he dies becoming King of
the Underworld.
of the Nile River each year, originally named
The Night of the Tear-Drop in remembrance of
the extent to which Isis lamented the death of
Osiris. It is said that her tears were so plentiful
that it caused the Nile to overflow. Today it is
celebrated annually by Egyptian Muslims and
is called The Night of the Drop.
Isis remained popular in Egyptian
mythology even in the days of Roman and
Greeks occupation. When Christianity was
brought into the Roman Empire during the
forth century, her worshippers founded the
first Madonna in order to keep her influence
alive. Some people say that the ancient images
of Isis nursing her baby Horus inspired the
style of portraits of “mother and child” for
centuries, including those of the “Madonna and
child” found in religious art.
The Egyptian goddess Isis has much
knowledge to share with modern women of
today. She is a symbol of feminine strength.
Isis has the capacity to reach a great depth of
emotions; she has the act of creation and is a
source of nourishment and protection.
1. To learn more about Isis, visit
Isis gives birth to a son, Horus. It is said
that Horus sought revenge on his father’s
murderer by killing Seth and taking his place
as King of Egypt.
Throughout the years this myth and
story has been changed and altered, but the
memories of Isis as kind ruler, mother and
queen remain unchanged.
Although her influences are largely
forgotten, the Egyptian goddess Isis played an
important role in the development of modern
religions. The festival surrounding the flooding
This painting is in the tomb of Seti I in the Valley of the Kings.
Egypt and the
Circa 3,000- 2,500 B.C. the Egyptians
dedicated most of their time to constructing big
buildings. The Pyramids are one of the most
impressive monuments of the ancient world
and are still standing to this day.
The Pyramids were built as tombs for the
Pharaohs of Egypt. They were all built during
the Old Kingdom which was when Egypt was
first unified around 3000 B.C. under a
Pharaoh from Upper Egypt.
Ancient Egypt was divided into two
regions, known as Upper Egypt and Lower
Egypt. Lower Egypt was located to the north
where the Nile River stretched out broke up
into different streams to form the Nile Delta.
Upper Egypt was located in the south
stretching to Syene. The terminology "Upper"
and "Lower" comes from the flow of the Nile
from the highlands of East Africa northwards to
the sea. Therefore, Upper Egypt lies to the
south of Lower Egypt.
Even though the two kingdoms of Upper
and Lower Egypt were united around 3000
B.C., each maintained its own regalia. Thus,
the pharaohs were known as the Rulers of the
Two Kingdoms or two lands, and wore the
pschent, a double crown, each half representing
sovereignty of one of the kingdoms.
There were numerous differences
between Upper and Lower Egyptians in the
ancient world. They spoke different dialects
and had different customs. Many of these
differences, and the occasional tensions they
created, still exist in modern times. In Egyptian
Arabic, Lower Egyptians are known as baharwa
and Upper Egyptians as sa’ayda.
The Pyramids
The first Pharaohs built simpler tombs,
called mastabas. These mastabas were square
buildings with a room inside for the coffin, the
mummy and the valuables that the Pharaohs
would take with them to the afterlife.
The Pharaohs then began to put mounds
of earth on top of their mastabas to make them
appear bigger and greater. Archaeologists
believe the first of its kind was the pyramid of
The next approach was decorating the
mound of earth by making them into steps i.e.
the step pyramids.
Eventually the Egyptians decided to fill in
the steps creating the first real pointed
pyramids which were built at Giza.
For more information on the pyramids and ancient Egypt, visit
the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Anthropology and
Archaeology, or National Geographics great website on the
pyramids at www.nationalgeographic.com/pyramids.
One of the Seven Wonders of the World: the pyramids at Giza, Egypt.
Photo: Ricardo Liberati - wikipedia.com
Connect the
Opera Terms
Opera Seria
Dance spectacle set to music.
Highest pitched woman’s voice.
Dramatic text adapted for opera.
Low female voice.
Comic opera.
A drama or comedy in which music is
the essential factor; very little is spoken.
Opera with dramatic and intense plots.
Music composed for a singing group.
A composition written for two performers.
A group of musicians who play together
on various musical instruments.
12. Contralto
Highest pitched man’s voice.
13. Tenor
A musical style used in opera and oratorio, in
which the text is declaimed in the rhythm of
natural speech with slight melodic variation.
10. Chorus
11. Act
14. Opera Buffa
15. Recitative
M. Male voice between bass and tenor.
16. Bass
A piece of music originally designed to be
played before an opera or musical play.
The term describing the realistic or naturalistic
school of opera that flourished briefly in the
late 19th and early 20th centuries; libretti were
chosen to depict a ‘slice of life’.
Deepest male voice.
Elaborate solo in an opera or oratorio.
Main division of a play or opera.
17. Overture
18. Verismo
Bard of Stratford
William Shakespeare
backstage for fear of bad luck. To this day it is
referred to as “the Scottish play.” Later, under the
patronage of King James I of England, the group
was given an indoor theater known as The
Blackfriars. The group was then named The King’s
Shakespeare’s plays were very popular with
the people of London. While it was not customary to
pay much to a playwright for his work, Shakespeare
was given a share of the profits from the sale of tickets.
As a shareholder of the company, he became wealthy.
He also took pleasure in acting in his creations. It is
believed that he acted the roles of Adam in Much
Ado about Nothing and the ghost of Hamlet’s
father. His knowledge of stagecraft and the demands
of acting gave him a great insight into the dynamics
of successful drama.
Shakespeare was born in this half-timbered house in Stratford-upon-Avon.
British Travel Association
William Shakespeare was born the third of
eight children to John Shakespeare and Mary
Arden in 1564. His father was a merchant and a fine
leather glove maker. His mother was from a family of
land owners. As William grew, his father became an
alderman and later the mayor of their town,
Stratford-upon-Avon. William attended the local
grammar school where he studied the comedies of
Plautus and Terence and the tragedies of Seneca in
Latin. It was during this time that his love of the
theater was born.
In 1582 William married Anne Hathaway,
who was about eight years his senior. Together they
had three children: Susanna, 1583, and the twins
Judith and Hamnet, 1585. While there was work
for William in Stratford-upon-Avon as an actor, the
call of London, the capital of his craft, led him to
take his family to the city in 1588. By 1594 he had
established himself as both a playwright and actor
and was invited to join the company The Lord
Chamberlain’s Men.
This group of actors performed at The Globe
Theatre, located on the South Bank of the Thames
River in Southwark. To attend their performances,
theater goers had to take the ferry across the river or
travel across the London Bridge. When The Globe
Theatre, which had a thatched roof, burned down during
a production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, it became
a tradition not to mention the name of the play
Although he wrote thirty-eight plays, we have
no manuscripts in his handwriting because he did
not consider the writing of plays as literature. He
would only publish them to correct errors in other
editions of his works that were printed without his
permission. In his day, the concept of copyright did
not exist. Anyone could copy the work of another
person and publish it for profit. Shakespeare
authorized the publishing of only half of his work
known as “quarto” editions. For the remainder of his
plays, we depend upon his friends and colleagues for
“folio” editions which were published several years
after his death.
Shakespeare’s poetry is also very highly
regarded. His sonnets are regarded as a very high
form of poetry and his work in this area earned him the
epithet, “mellifluous and honey-tongued Shakespeare”
in 1598. His classical epics, Venus and Adonis and
The Rape of Lucrece are considered two of the
The witches wreak havoc in The Opera Company of
Philadelphia’s 2003 production of Verdi’s Macbeth.
Words, words, words:
Shakespeare’s influence on the English Language
When Shakespeare’s Hamlet is asked what he is
reading, he responds with the famous line “Words,
words, words.” Even 400 years after his death, William
Shakespeare’s writings leave their mark on culture
even today. Considered the greatest writer in the
English language, Shakespeare’s plays are filled with
quotes, phrases and even words that are used in
every day conversation. Listed below are some of the
famous phrases and words that Shakespeare originated.
Do you recognize any of these?
As You Like It
• Too much of a good thing
• Neither a borrower nor a lender be
• The lady doth protest too much
Portrait of William Shakespeare, Bard of Stratford.
finest pieces of writing in the English language. With
his success, he returned to Stratford-upon-Avon
and purchased one of the finest homes in town, New
Place. Across the garden from his home, he had
another home built for his daughter Susanna and
her husband Dr. Hall. Whenever the plague would
strike and the theaters were closed, he would return
home to wait out the cycle of the disease. After
writing The Tempest in 1610, he left London and
retired to his country home. Six years later, the
venerable “Bard of Stratford” died and was given a
hero’s funeral.
So great were his plays that the field of opera
has hundreds of scores written to them. Berlioz wrote
his Béatrice et Bénédict based upon Much Ado
about Nothing. Ralph Vaughn Williams’ opera, Sir
John in Love, was based upon The Merry Wives of
Windsor. Verdi’s Otello and Macbeth were based
upon Shakespeare’s plays of the same name and his
Falstaff was based upon both King Henry IV and
The Merry Wives of Windsor. Shakespeare’s
Romeo and Juliet has twenty-five operas based
upon it, The Tempest has forty-seven and A
Midsummer Night’s Dream has forty-eight operas
based upon it. Few authors can claim to have
affected the culture of the world more than William
Shakespeare, the “Bard of Stratford.”
Henry IV, part 2
• Eaten me out of house and home
• Dead as a doornail
Henry VIII
• For goodness sake
Julius Caesar
• It was Greek to me
King John
• Elbow room
Love's Labour's Lost
• The naked truth
• Knock, knock! Who’s there?
• The be-all and the end-all
• Sorry sight
Much Ado About Nothing
• Done to death
• Neither here nor there
• Wear my heart on my sleeve
Romeo and Juliet
• You kiss by the book
The Merchant of Venice
• Love is blind
• My own flesh and blood
The Merry Wives of Windsor
• Laughing-stock
The Taming of the Shrew
• An eye-sore
• Kill ... with kindness
All the World’s a Stage
The Globe Theatre
Woodcut image of the Globe Theatre circa 1612.
Theater was a very important part of life in
Shakespeare’s day. There was no Wii or Sony
Playstation, no computers or mp3 players, no
radios or televisions, and no phones at all during the
Victorian Era. What did people do to pass the time?
Reading was important, if you had access to books.
Music would be performed at home, if you had
access to a fortepiano and music lessons. The one
form of entertainment that everybody could access
was the theater. Everyone went to the theater, rich
or poor. It didn’t hurt that one of the biggest theater
lovers was Queen Elizabeth I. Supposedly it was
she who demanded a play devoted to the character
Falstaff. She loved the old knight in Shakespeare’s
Henry IV, and insisted that the bard give her a
comedy which showed the fat old knight in love.
Many of Shakespeare’s plays were performed
in The Globe Theatre, built in 1598 in London. It
was three stories high, octagonal in shape, and 100
feet in diameter. The stage was a compact 43 feet
wide by 28 feet deep and five feet off the ground. The
Globe, like many theaters of it’s time, was an open-air
theater that could fit 3,000 people – that’s more people
than can fit into the Academy of Music. There was
no roof over the main portion of it so sunlight could
come in and light up the stage. (Remember, Ben
Franklin didn’t experiment with electricity with his
kite until 1752.) Performance would take place during
the day and most likely only during fair weather. The
structure was capped by a turret with a flag from
which a trumpeter would announce that day’s
There were three tiers, or levels, on which
people sat, and standing room on the ground. The
cheapest ticket would be in standing room - right in
front of the stage. People in the standing room area,
dubbed the groundlings, were loud and boisterous.
They would talk back to the actors and eat and
drink during the performance. It could be tough in
this crowd, too, with pushing, shoving, fistfights, and
even pick pockets! For the middle priced ticket,
you’d get a seat in the gallery on one of the theater’s
tiers. You’d sit on a bench, and you’d have some
protection from the hot sun or rain from the theater’s
thatched roof. If you were rich and could pay the most
expensive price, you’d sit in the exclusive
Gentleman’s Room. These private boxes gave you a
private entrance into the theater, that way you
would avoid the public and be seated along the walls
near the stage and allowed you to be seen by the
audience, similar to the box seats on the sides of the
stage of the Academy of Music.
Since the entire town would have seen a play
in a few days, a new one would have to be put on
pretty quickly so the theater could make money.
Acting companies couldn’t spend too much time
rehearsing and would need to have a new play ready
in three to four days.
Companies were known for their “star” actors
who would play the romantic and heroic leads. In
this time there were actors only - no actresses. All
roles, male and female alike, were acted by men or
boys. Boys got to play all of the young heroines like
Juliette in Romeo and Juliette. In The Merry
Wives of Windsor boys, whose voices had not yet
changed, would have played Alice, Anne, and Meg
Page. For more comedic roles like Dame Quickly,
most likely an older man who specialized in playing
funny ladies would have played the part.
Each of the actors in the troupe would have
done certain types of roles – young men, comic
parts, heroic parts, tragic parts – but each would
have had their “role” in a play. That made it easier
for the actors to fit into their role – especially since
they might have played more than one part. When
the actors received their script, it wasn’t the script of
the entire play, just their scenes.
The Company would sit down before rehearsals
began and the playwright would read the entire play
to the actors – perhaps the only time the actors
would have heard the full play.
Because the Globe had no roof, the sound of
the actor’s voices would escape out of the building,
not to mention the fact that audiences then could
be quite noisy – especially those on the floor. Actors
had to learn how to effectively project their voices.
They were forced to shout their lines, over enunciate,
and overact so audiences understood what was
going on.
Theaters like the Globe didn’t use sets like
you’ll see in the opera Antony and Cleopatra.
Instead the back wall of the theater had different
doorways and balconies that could be used for any
situation. They might use a particular prop or piece
of furniture that could be used only if it was
absolutely necessary, like the laundry basket in
which Falstaff is hidden, but you’d never see a
complicated set like you see today. So that
audiences would know where each scene was set,
the playwright would use the first few lines of the new
scene to comment on the surroundings or time of day.
Costumes, too, were multi-functional.
Frequently a rich theater lover would donate their old
clothes to the theater company. The theater would
have a collection of clothes that they would use for
costumes for all of their plays. It would be possible to
see the same costume in several plays a year.
The original Globe Theatre burned to the ground
in 1613 when a cannon shot during a performance
of Henry VIII set the thatched roof on fire. A new
Globe was built on the same location before
Shakespeare’s death. The Globe and other theaters
were always careful to make sure the authorities
were happy as they could be shut down for any
reason from offensive material, to threats to public
safety – including the spread of the plague. The Globe
was forced to close its doors 1642, when the Puritans
closed all entertainment venues as they were viewed as
immoral. The Puritans tore down the building in
1644 and built tenements at the location.
The Globe’s foundations were rediscovered in
1989, and plans to build a modern-day Globe Theatre
were spearheaded by American actor Sam
Wanamaker. Construction started in 1993 near the
site of the original theater and was completed in 1996.
Queen Elizabeth II officially opened the theater on
June 12, 1997 with a production of Henry V. Every
effort was made to reproduce the Globe as faithfully
as possible. But as there are no existing blueprints
or plans, the new theater was based upon sketches
and written descriptions of the original Globe. The
modern Globe seats 1,500 people between the
galleries and the groundlings. In its opening season,
210,000 spectators saw productions at the theater.
Shakespeare at the Movies
If Shakespeare were alive today, you can bet that he’d be one of the greatest writer/directors in
Hollywood history. Hollywood has turned to his plays time and again for inspiration. Here’s a list a movies
that you may have seen which are based on Shakespearean plays:
Based on
Kiss Me Kate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .The Taming of the Shrew
Forbidden Planet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .The Tempest
Throne of Blood . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hamlet
Manchurian Candidate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hamlet
West Side Story . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Romeo and Juliet
Chimes at Midnight . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .The Merry Wives of Windsor
Strange Brew . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hamlet
Ran . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .King Lear
My Own Private Idaho . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Henry IV
Green Eggs and Hamlet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hamlet
Romeo and Juliet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Romeo and Juliet
10 Things I Hate About You . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .The Taming of the Shrew
Romeo Must Die . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Romeo and Juliet
Macbeth: The Comedy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Macbeth
My Kingdom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .King Lear
O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Othello
Scotland, PA . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Macbeth
Manchurian Candidate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Hamlet
She’s the Man . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Twelfth Night
The Infamous Premiere of
Louis Mélançon,
Leontyne Price (b.
1927) as
Cleopatra, 1966
New York WorldTelegram and
Sun Newspaper
Prints &
Courtesy of
Leontyne Price
Antony and Cleopatra
With the success of
Samuel Barber’s first full
scale opera, Vanessa, the
Metropolitan Opera in New
York City turned to Barber
again to write a grand
opera to celebrate the
opening its new home at
Lincoln Center in 1966.
Shakespeare’s Antony and
Cleopatra was chosen as
the subject. Its grand scale
would be perfect for the
opening of the new house.
Barber turned to Franco
Zeffirelli, the famous Italian
opera, stage and film director
who had been contracted
to direct the production, to
write the libretto. Alvin
Ailey would choreograph in
his Met debut. And the
opera would star soprano
Leontyne Price as Cleopatra.
Zeffirelli, using only Shakespeare’s text,
condensed, combined and deleted scenes and
characters. The play’s five acts and forty-one
scenes became an opera in three acts and
sixteen scenes and over a dozen characters
were dropped from the play’s cast of 35.
Zefirelli retains many of the play’s famous lines
and gives opera very effective finales to each
act. The Act I finale ends with Cleopatra
appearing as a vision before Antony, Act II with
the Antony’s suicide and Act III with the death
scene of Cleopatra.
Zeffirelli designed a production that
would show off all of the opera house’s new
technology. Imagine giving yourself the biggest
most expensive toy in the world and given the
challenge to play with it and make sure
everything worked. Well, that’s what Zeffirelli
did and he brought the Met to a grinding halt
even before the new house had opened. The
new stage turntable broke down due to the
weight of the sets and cast on it; Leonytne Price
found herself virtually entombed in a pyramid
that wouldn’t open; lighting cues went wrong,
and more as the company learned how to use
the new state of the art equipment.
Opening night of Antony and Cleopatra on
September 16, 1966 was one of the most
infamous premieres in operatic history. It was
the social event of the season and everyone
wanted to see the new opera in the new opera
house. Music critics from around the globe
were there to report on event. Despite what
seemed like a success, given the audience’s
ovation when the curtain came down, critical
reception was almost hostile, particularly
towards the lavishness of Franco Zeffirelli’s
sets. According to the New York Times’ Bernard
Holland, the work was “crushed, to all
appearances, beneath the grandeurs of
Zeffirelli’s behemoth staging.” But even
Barber’s lyrical, accessible music was labeled
uninspired and irrelevant, especially when
compared to his musically experimental
The poor reviews and harsh critcal
reaction to the opera devastated Barber. He
thought the opera had some of the best music
he’d ever written. He turned to Gian Carlo
Menotti to help edit and rework the opera. They
removed many of the military scenes and
concentrated on the opera that Barber had
wanted to write - the story of two of the most
famous lovers in history. Barber unveiled the
revised opera at the Julliard School in 1975,
but still the opera failed to catch on and since
then has rarely been performed.
Barber continued to write new music, but
not with the same acclaim he had when he was
In later years the Pennsylvania-born
composer became clinically depressed and an
alcoholic. His friendship with Menotti had
ended in 1973 and the home they had shared
was sold. Barber moved to an apartment in
New York City where he died of cancer in 1981
at the age of 70 with Gian Carlo Menotti at his
Antony and Cleopatra
Plot Synopsis
A chorus of Romans, Greeks,
Patricians, Jews, and soldiers condemns the Roman
General Antony for his life of luxury in Egypt and for
his shameless behavior with the Egyptian queen
ACT I: In Alexandria, Antony realizes that his life
in Egypt with Cleopatra is making him weak and he
tells his friend Enobarbus that he will go back to
Rome. Cleopatra enters and the lovers bid a reluctant
farewell. Back in Rome, Antony is greeted by the
Senate but admonished by Caesar Octavius for
neglecting his responsibilities and ignoring his
requests for more troops. The Senator Agrippa tries
to placate the argument and suggests that Antony
marry Caesar’s sister Octavia as a demonstration of
peace between the two men; Antony agrees. In her
palace in Alexandria, Cleopatra pines for Antony and
languishes over their separation. “Give me some
music.” When a messenger brings news of Antony’s
marriage, she punishes the messenger but takes
pleasure when he says that Cleopatra is the more
beautiful. In a Roman banquet hall the soldiers
celebrate Antony’s marriage to Octavia and his
reconciliation with Caesar. Antony asks Octavia to
overlook his past discretions. Dorabella, Caesar’s
emissary, says that now that he is married, Antony
will have to end his relationship Cleopatra.
Enobarbus says that Antony will never be able to
give up Cleopatra and recalls the first time the lovers
met “When first she met Antony”. A vision of the
queen appears as she calls out for Antony to return
to her. Antony declares that he will return to Egypt.
Caesar rails against Antony’s desertion
and tells the Senate that he has given Cleopatra
Cyprus, Lydia, and lower Syria. He vows that Antony
will pay the consequences and they prepare to go to
war. In Cleopatra’s palace, her attendants have a
soothsayer read their fortune and are told that they
will outlive their mistress. Antony and Cleopatra
enter and are interrupted by Enobarbus, who brings
news that Caesar is advancing with the Roman
army. As Antony leaves to go prepare his troops,
Cleopatra intends to go with him but Enobarbus
warns her that she is too much of a distraction for
Antony. Cleopatra swears her revenge on Enobarbus
and says that she will not be left behind. In Antony’s
camp, the guards hear haunting music. They believe
that it is Hercules, the god of war, abandoning his
support of Antony. At dawn, Antony and Cleopatra
awaken and vow their love for each other. “Oh take,
oh take those lips away” Despite her protests,
Antony leaves to prepare his troops for battle, and
Cleopatra gets her army ready as well. At the height
of the battle, as the Egyptian army is being overrun,
Cleopatra’s ships are seen in the distance, fleeing
back to Alexandria. As his army is defeated, Antony
is demoralized. “Hark! The land bids me tread no
more upon it” In her palace, Cleopatra meets with
Thidias, one of Caesar’s emissaries, to discuss the
terms of surrender. Antony is furious and denounces
the queen, suspicious that she has abandoned him for
Caesar. Cleopatra flees to her monument and sends
her attendant to tell Antony that she has killed
herself. When he hears the news that she is dead,
Antony begs his shield bearer Eros to kill him. Instead
Eros kills himself. Antony retrieves the sword and
stabs himself just as Cleopatra’s attendant enters to
tell him that she is not really dead. Gravely injured,
Antony asks to be carried to her.
ACT III: Anthony is brought to Cleopatra. The bid
farewell just as he dies. Filled with despair,
Cleopatra recounts a dream she had in which she
saw Antony as the Emperor of Rome. Caesar arrives,
assures Cleopatra that he no longer means her any
harm, and mourns Antony’s passing. Dorabella,
Caesar’s emissary, confesses to the queen that
despite his reassurances, Caesar plans to lead her
through the streets as a captive. Unwilling to accept
this, Cleopatra summons a man to bring a basket
full of poisonous snakes. Taking the snakes,
Cleopatra and her two attendants commit suicide
“Give me my robe, put on my crown” as everyone
laments the loss of the immortal lovers.
There’s a Place for You at
Settlement Music School
Kevin Eubanks, Hollywood film composer Alex
North, Star Wars director Irv Kershner, numerous
members of The Philadelphia Orchestra (as well as
musicians in orchestras around the country). Even
scientist Albert Einstein was a Settlement Music
School student! In fact, studies show that science
and music use similar principles—so music lessons
may help your math skills, too.
actor Kevin Bacon
took lessons at
Settlement Music
School. You can,
Settlement Music School is a community arts
school that offers programs and activities in music,
voice, dance and the related arts to help those
interested achieve their greatest potential.
Settlement is dedicated to a belief that
people of all ages, abilities, backgrounds,
and financial circumstances deserve and will
benefit from the high quality programs that
Settlement offers.
Founded in 1908, the School began when two
young volunteer teachers offered piano lessons for a
nickel. The response was so huge they raised the
price to a dime to hire more teachers. A full program
of instruction soon took shape, encompassing all
instruments and voice and taught by professionals,
including members of the Philadelphia Orchestra.
Today, Settlement’s six branches reach all
over Philadelphia and serve more than 9,000 pupils
on site and another 6,000 through outreach
programs. Students from every zip code in
Philadelphia and the eight surrounding counties in
Pennsylvania and New Jersey attend Settlement.
The school has four Philadelphia branches
(West Philadelphia, Germantown, KardonNortheast, and the original South Philadelphia
school - the Mary Louise Curtis branch in Queen
Village); one in Jenkintown, Montgomery County;
and the newest location in Camden, NJ.
An impressive list of former Settlement
students has gone on to exciting careers, including
actor Kevin Bacon, jazz bassist Stanley Clarke,
pianist Joey DeFrancesco, Tonight Show guitarist
Settlement is a vital force in the communities
it serves. It brings together students from every walk
of life, providing many with opportunities
otherwise unavailable to them through scholarship
and financial aid. Settlement Music School helps
them not only to develop musical and artistic
talents, but also to build self confidence and
readiness for academic and other achievements.
Students who come here begin life-long friendships
with other students who perform with them in
ensemble and orchestra programs. One student, a
current member of the Philadelphia Orchestra, still
plays “gigs” on the side with a friend he met when he
was 14 years old at Settlement.
Students’ work at Settlement puts them in
touch with the best of themselves, the best of their
neighbors, and the best that the world has to offer in
creative expression. And, anybody, no matter what
your skill or circumstance, is accepted. Call 215320-2600 or visit Settlement’s website at
www.smsmusic.org for more information.
Settlement Music School Branches
Mary Louise Curtis
(215) 320-2600
416 Queen Street, Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 320-2610
6128 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19144
(215) 320-2620
3745 Clarendon Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19114
Jenkintown Music School
(215) 320-2630
515 Meetinghouse Road, Jenkintown, PA 19046
West Philadelphia
(215) 320-2640
4910 Wynnefield Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19131
Camden School of Musical Arts
(856) 541-6375
531-35 Market Street, Camden, NJ 08102
Visit the Settlement Music School website at
A Sampling of
Careers in the Arts
Advertising Director
Architectural Model Builder
Artistic Director
Art Festival Coordinator
Art Teacher
Arts Administrator
Arts Consultant
Arts Ed. Curriculum Writer
Audio Engineer (recording)
Band Director
Book Designer
Book Illuminator
Box Office Director
Business Manager
Casting Director
Choir Director
Clothing Designer
Commercial Artist
Computer Graphics Design
Concert Singer
Contract Specialist
Copyright Specialist
Costume Buyer
Costume and Mask Designer
Creative Consultant
Cutter (costumes)
Dialect Coach
Draper (costumes)
Dresser (theater)
Extra (background actor)
Fashion Designer
First Hand (seamstress)
Fundraiser (Development)
Furniture Designer
House Manager (theater)
Illustrator (fashion, book, etc.)
Lighting Designer
Makeup Artist
Manager (arts organizations)
Master Electrician (stage)
Model Builder
Mold Maker
Music Contractor
Music Copyist and Transcriber
Music Editor
Music Librarian
Music Teacher
Producer (theater, TV, movies)
Proofreader (music)
Props Buyer
Props Designer
Public Relations Specialist
Scene Painter
Scenic Designer
Set Decorator
Set Dresser
Shop Foreman (stage)
Special Effects Coordinator
Stage Carpenter
Stage Director
Stage Hand
Stage Manager
Stitcher (costumes)
Stunt Coordinator
Theater Director
Ticketing Agent
TV Camera Operator
Wardrobe Mistress
Active Learning
What career would you consider interesting? Where do you think you could go to learn more about it?
So you want to sing like an
Singing on the opera
stage is a lot of hard work.
Singers are like athletes in
that they are constantly
training to perfect their
voices. They ask their
voices and bodies to do
things that most of us
without training can’t do;
specifically, to sing incredibly intricate and difficult
music and project their voice over a sixty piece (or
more) orchestra and still be heard.
Singing begins with the human voice. The
voice is a very versatile instrument. It can produce
sounds that present a wide range of frequencies that
we call pitches. Pitches can be high or low. Women
can sing in the highest pitches and men in the
lowest ones.
Our voices are also able to
Sometimes we speak softly
as when we are telling a
secret. Other times we yell
as if we were at a football
game. These are some of
the ways we can look at the
human voice. But we can
go deeper and see it as a gift of human biology.
Voices are powered by the air that is exhaled
out of the lungs. The diaphragm, a muscle that
separates the chest cavity from the abdomen, is
used to control that flow of air. The abdomen is right
behind the stomach muscles and contains the
intestines, spleen, and other organs. It’s always
important to breathe from the diaphragm. Inhaling
deeply causes the diaphragm to lower while the ribs
and stomach expand. The shoulders should not rise.
The diaphragm forces the air out when it
contracts. When it does this, it causes the vocal
chords to vibrate. The vocal chords are actually folds
of fibrous bands that are stretched along the two
sides of the larynx. The larynx is the body’s sound
instrument. It is just below the ‘Adam’s apple.’
When we hum, talk, or sing, air passes through the
larynx and it vibrates. As the air vibrates it creates a
sound that is then shaped by the other parts of our
bodies. This includes the mouth, tongue, teeth and
lastly the lips.
Babies experiment with singing, laughing,
screaming, and babbling. This is done to exercise
the vocal chords and learn how to control them.
The pitch of the voice (how high or how low we
speak) is created by them. Singers must masterfully
control the flow of air through the vocal chords in
the larynx. Each sung note is determined by how the
chords are controlled. This is why singers have vocal
exercises. It is so that they can quickly adjust to the
demands of the music without thinking about it.
Soprano Sari Gruber as Norina in
Donizetti’s Don Pasquale
Photo: Kelly & Massa
Singers must learn how to shape their
mouths to control the sound that comes out of it.
Specific sounds are controlled by the size and shape
of the mouth. Think of the mouth and entire head as
being like a megaphone. Singers use all open spaces
in their mouths, sinuses, and skull like a
megaphone to help project their voices. Singers raise
the soft palate, located on the roof of your mouth
towards the back, to help create the megaphone
effect. An indicator that enough space has been
created is that your uvula, or the little fleshy piece
that hangs down in the back, is raised and it
doesn’t dangle.
In opera, singers sing in many languages. So
that singers are able to effectively communicate
|their lines, they often work with language coaches.
Different languages demand various ways of
expressing text. Each language has its own unique
way of being enunciated.
Once a singer knows the science of singing,
the singer must be careful to understand the music
and the text of the song. Certain emotions can also
demand certain ways of enunciating the text. In this
way, the singer combines vocal techniques with
the emotional context of the music to enhance the
words. This process creates the passionate music
we know as opera.
1. Place a hole in the bottom of the cups.
2. Cut rubber bands so that they become long stretches
of rubber.
3. Pull on the rubber band so that it vibrates. How does
pitch change? Record your findings.
4. Tie the rubber band to a small object that is larger than
the hole in the cup. (Paper clip) This object will act as a plug
to the hole. Be sure to make a square knot on the object so
that the pressure in the next step does not cause the knot to
slip out and the object to be ejected from the cup.
5. Slide the rubber band through the small hole in the
cup and pull it through until the object catches on the
inside bottom of the cup.
6. Pull on the rubber band again so that it vibrates
a second time. Record your findings.
7. In comparing the two sounds, what did you observe
happen after the cup was added to the activity?
8. Place different sized cups into your experiment and
record your findings.
9. Cover the cup opening with your hand. Pull on the
rubber band. Record your findings.
Sound and Active Learning
The vocal chords vibrate and create sounds
that our mouth then forms so that we can talk or
sing. Without our mouth we would only be able to
express a sound similar to a hum. It is the mouth
that is the sound shaper that produces our words
and songs.
Our wind pipe is a tube though which the air
is passed over the larynx. After the air picks up a
vibrating sound from our vocal chords, the mouth
enunciates the sound into words and projects the
new text-added sound into the world. We can
understand both of these as a human instrument.
We can make a model of our human
instrument. Our model will not be able to shape the
sounds into words, but it will express the various
humming pitches necessary for words to be created.
The place of the vocal chords will be taken by
a rubber band. The place of the mouth will be taken
by various size paper or plastic cups.
10. See if you can get your cup to make sounds like
a baby.
The Highs and Lows of the
Operatic Voice
Did you ever wonder what the difference is
between a soprano and a mezzo-soprano or what
voice type can sing the highest note and the lowest?
Most opera singers fall into a voice type that reflects
the singer’s vocal range as well as the dramatic
requirements of singing a particular role. Above all
the voice is an instrument - a human one. Opera
singers spend much time learning correct singing
techniques that allow them to sing without
amplification. There is no grabbing a microphone
and belting out arias in opera. All the sound that an
opera singer produces is done through the sheer
power of the human voice.
So how does one become a soprano, mezzosoprano, tenor, baritone, or bass, the five most
common types of voices? Some of it has to do with
the size of the vocal chords and the speed at which
they vibrate. It also has to do with vocal range,
which can be defined as the span from the lowest
note to the highest note that a particular singer can
produce. Vocal range is very important in opera
singing. Two other things which are taken into
consideration when determining a singer’s voice type
are the consistency of timbre (sound quality or color
of the voice) and the ability to project the voice over a
full orchestra. Remember, there are no microphones
in opera, and there are small, medium, large and
extra large voices. Soprano Barbara Hendricks
compares the differences in vocal types to the
differences between a Mack truck and a Maserati.
She says “...one can haul a load, but the other can
take the curves.”
Some terms that are used to describe operatic voices are:
Coloratura: typically a voice with a very high range
with the ability to sing complicated passages with
great agility.
Dramatic: a heavy, powerful voice with a steely timbre.
Lyric: an average size voice, but capable of singing
long beautiful phrases.
Lyric spinto: a somewhat more powerful voice than
that of a true lyric.
Helden: a German term referring to a powerful voice
capable of singing very demanding roles.
Falsetto: the upper part of a voice, more often used in
reference to male voices.
Let’s define a few of the voice types that audiences
generally hear in opera:
For females, the highest voice type
is the soprano. In operatic drama,
the soprano is almost always the
heroine because she projects
innocence and youth. Within this
category, there are other sub-divisions such as,
coloratura soprano, lyric soprano, and dramatic
soprano. Each of these voices has particular lighter
or darker voice qualities as well as differences in
range. Some of the roles sung by these voice types
include: the Queen of the Night in The Magic Flute
(coloratura), Mimi in La bohème (lyric) and Ariadne
in Ariadne auf Naxos (dramatic).
The mezzo-soprano has a lower
range than the soprano. Many
mezzo-sopranos sing the socalled “trouser” roles, portraying
young boys or men, or they may be
the villainesses or perhaps motherly types. This
category is also sub-divided into coloratura mezzo,
who can sing complicated fast music through a large
range. The comedic heroines of Gioachino Rossini’s
operas, such as Cinderella, The Barber of Seville,
and The Italian Girl in Algiers, are well-suited for
this voice type. The dramatic mezzo is most often
found singing the operas of Giuseppe Verdi in roles
such as Amneris in Aida, or Princess Eboli in Don
Carlo. One of the most well known roles for a
dramatic mezzo is the fiery gypsy Carmen in the opera
of the same name.
The contralto or alto is the lowest
female voice and the darkest in
timbre. This voice type is usually
reserved for specialty roles like the
earth goddess Erda in Richard
Wagner’s Nordic fantasy-epic The Ring of the
Nibelungen. Since this is such a rare voice type,
dramatic mezzos often sing roles in this range.
Marian Anderson, a Philadelphia native, was one of
the world’s most famous contraltos ever.
For males, the tenor is generally
considered to be the highest male
voice in an opera, and is most often
the hero or the love interest of the
story. His particular voice type
determines which roles are best for him to sing.
There are many different types of tenor voices. Two
of the more common ones are lyric tenors, whose
voices have high, bright tones, and dramatic
tenors whose voices have a darker sound with a
ringing quality in the upper range. Two of the more
famous roles for tenors include Rodolfo in La
bohème (lyric) and Radames in Aida (dramatic).
A countertenor is able to sing even
higher than a tenor. This voice
actually falls within a female’s voice
range. Through the use of a man’s
falsetto voice, the voice produces a
sound that is sometimes described as otherworldly.
A baritone is the most common
type of male voice whose range is
lies midway between the high tenor
voice and the low bass voice. He
can play several types of roles. In
comedic operas, he is often the leader of the funny
business, but he can also be the hero who sacrifices
himself for the tenor or soprano, or sometimes, he is
the villain. This voice has a dramatic quality capable
of producing rich, dark tones. The hunchback court
jester in the title role in Rigoletto (dramatic) and the
popular Toréador Escamillo in Carmen are favorite
roles for baritones.
In general, a bass is the lowest
and darkest of the male voices. The
word bass comes from the Italian
word basso, which means low.
Some singers in this category are
referred to as bass-baritones because they have
voices that range between the bass and the
baritone voice. A bass is ideal for several types of
roles.A basso serio or basso profondo portrays
characters who convey wisdom or nobility such as
Sarastro in The Magic Flute. In contrast, a basso
buffo sings comedic roles such as Dr. Bartolo in The
Barber of Seville.
So, no matter what the size, quality or range,
a singer’s voice has the ability to thrill an audience
with its sheer beauty and musicality.
Active Learning
Let’s imagine that The Lord of the Rings had been made into
an opera. What voice types would you cast in the major roles
and why?
Merry Pippin
Careers in the Arts
The Artistic Team creates everything you will see on stage. They spend hours studying the music, the libretto, and
the opera’s historic context. It helps if they speak the language in which the opera is written. After their research
is done, they ask themselves what the composer and librettist are saying about these characters and the subject
to create a vision of how they will bring the opera to life.
The Artistic Team
The Conductor is responsible for the
interpretation of the music. He/she is respectfully
referred to as Maestro, which in Italian means master
or teacher. The conductor must be a very skilled
musician. The Maestro works with the orchestra and
the singers to interpret the music. Based on the
composer’s instructions, he/she determines tempo,
dynamics, and the musical expression of the opera.
He/she leads the orchestra during the performance,
coordinating what is happening onstage with what is
happening in the orchestra pit. It is important that
the singers and the musicians watch the conductor
at all times.
The Director ultimately brings to life what
will be assembled onstage. After the director has
studied the music, text, historical context, and any
materials like books, plays or historical figures on
which the opera might be based, he/she then turns
to the designers and together they arrive at a
concept. When rehearsals begin, the director helps
bring the concept to life through the characters of
the opera: how they move, how they behave, why
they behave the way they do, how they interact with
one another and the environment of the opera.
The Scenic Designer must have the vision
and creativity of a visual artist and a knowledge and
sense of theater. It is this person’s responsibility to
create the surroundings in which the characters
exist. The design of the scenery directly controls and
influences the total visual effect of the opera. The
scenic designer must work very closely with the rest
of the creative team to devise a set that allows the
production concept to be achieved and enhances the
work of the performers, director and the other
The Lighting Designer uses light to reveal
form, and create mood, balance and focus. Light
becomes a strong factor in the visual effect of design
through the control of intensity, color and
distribution. A lighting designer is responsible not
only for the general stage lighting but also for
special effects such as lightning or explosions.
Lighting effects and instruments are controlled by a
computer, so the lighting designer must know how
to use and program lighting software and be an
expert in the principals of electricity and design.
A Costume Designer is an essential part
of the total visual effect. He/she must contribute to
the concept by deciding how characters will look
by what they are wearing. The costume gives us
instant information about the characters in the
opera. Are they young or old, rich or poor? The
clothes have to be historically accurate, too. Opera
often has lavish and elaborate costumes with many
pieces to them. Often because of cost, an opera
company may rent a complete set of costumes to fit
the particular production.
The Wigs and Make-up Artists use the face
and hair as a palette. They can alter the physical
characteristics of a person – sometimes by making
people appear younger or older than they are. This
person is responsible for making the artists’ faces
and hair look like the characters they are portraying.
The Production Team
While the artistic team creates, the production team
implements the decisions that are made by the
artistic team. Each person has an area
of responsibility to oversee. These people are detail
oriented and have excellent communication skills
to work as a team to accomplish the goals of
the production.
The Production
Manager schedules
rehearsal time for the orchestra, chorus, principal
singers, and technicians, and makes arrangements
for the arrival of production staff, sets and
costumes. He/she oversees the construction of new
sets as well as supervising the stagehands at the
The Chorus Master prepares the chorus
musically. The chorus is the first of all the singers to
begin rehearsal. Since most operas are sung in a
foreign language, singers who do not speak the
language must learn the words phonetically and
memorize what they mean.
The Stage Manager and Assistant Stage
Managers ensure the rehearsals and performance
run smoothly. They keep track of the “who, what,
where, and when” of the production. Who enters or
exits, with what prop, wearing what costume, and
when in the music. They cue the various stage
technicians to change the set, lights, and where the
props are needed. They follow the score and give a
“Stand By” and a “Go.” Stage Managers are
timekeepers and the problem eliminators.
The Assistant Director assists the director
by writing down the stage blocking into a
piano/vocal score. He/she must be able to keep
track of the director’s instructions to hundreds of
people onstage: why they move, where they move,
and at what particular time in the music.
The Assistant Conductor plays the piano as
a substitute for the orchestra during staging and
music rehearsals. Obviously, this person must be an
excellent pianist and be very familiar with the opera
score. The accompanist follows the conductor’s
direction and must have a lot of stamina, because
the rehearsals are sometimes long and tiring.
Administrative Staff
The Music Director is the principal
conductor of the Opera Company’s orchestra. It is
his responsibility to improve the quality of the
orchestra, hire new orchestra members, hire
conductors for the operas which he is not
conducting, make casting and repertoire
recommendations to the General and Artistic
Director, work out any cuts in the music.
The Managing Director is hired by the board
of directors and is responsible for all of the business
aspects of an opera company from Marketing and
Public Relations, to Fund Raising and Education.
The Chief Financial Officer is responsible for
managing the budget, preparing tax statements, and
makes sure that everyone gets paid.
The Director of Development raises money
to help fund the running of the Company. Ticket
sales pay for less than half of the cost of producing
Communications oversees all promotional and
ticket sales campaigns and maintains contact with
press locally and from all over the world.
The Director of Community Programs
coordinates all aspects of educational and outreach
programs for students and adults, gives lectures
programming with the other directors and within the
Without the administration there wouldn’t be an
opera. These people constitute the company that
produces opera. They are the business people and
the office workers. After all, opera is show business.
The Board of Directors is a group of men and
women in the community who represent the
contributors to the opera and help set policies.
The General and Artistic Director is
responsible for planning all aspects of an opera
production from choosing which operas to perform,
which singers will be cast in the roles, designs for a
production and the production team to be hired. He
is also involved in crafting the Company budget and
represents the Company in all contract negotiations
with artists and all unions.
Production Manager Greg Prioleau reviews a set model for an
upcoming production.
The Subtle Art of
Costume Design
As costume director, Richard St. Clair’s job
is to oversee each and every costume in the operas
we perform. Each opera has its own special needs.
Sometimes we rent an entire production. This
requires Richard to send out the physical
measurements for each of our principal performers,
the chorus members and any others who may be in
the production.
Richard also designs costumes for our
productions, and his crew builds them based on his
sketches and instructions. This process usually
takes at least six months. It begins when he meets
with the director of the opera to discuss her or his
ideas. Richard’s job is to match his creative insights
with the goals of the director. To do this he seeks out
visuals that offer interesting ideas. Many hours are
spent at libraries and at home studying books of
costume illustrations. He also studies art books and
magazines. Once he has an idea of a design, he goes
to fabric shops in New York and Philadelphia and
gathers swatches of interesting fabrics. At this point,
he will do little “thumbnail sketches” to show a
director how he thinks the characters would look.
When he meets with the director, they will discuss
the historical settings and the fabrics that he has
collected. They then talk through the opera scene by
scene and character by character as they look at
Richard’s work. In this way, Richard learns exactly
what the director needs and wants.
Costume Shop Foreman Elmo Struck works on the final gown worn by
Cinderella in Rossini’s opera.
Costume Designer Richard St. Clair adjusts baritone Troy
Cook’s costume for the OCP production of La bohème.
He then takes all this information, his
research, thumbnail sketches, and swatches of
fabrics, and makes the final costume sketches. Each
sketch takes anywhere from one to ten hours,
depending on the intricacy of the costume. Finally
he shows the completed sketches to the director.
Once everything is approved, all of the fabric needed
to create the costumes is purchased.
It is at this point that his crew of about six to
eight people begins making the costumes. Some of
his workers have special jobs. Some are gifted at
making patterns; others are good at making hats,
while still others are good at painting fabrics, and
still others sew the fabrics into costumes. Each
pattern and costume is made one at a time with one
person in mind. When they sew a costume they call
it “building,” and costumes are much heavier and
sturdier than regular clothes. Many of the ladies
costumes have full skirts and petticoats and boned
corsets. His crew is excellent at historical pattern
making and costume building.
Richard graduated from Pennsylvania State
University in 1980. He received his Master of Fine
Arts degree from Temple University in 1985. He is a
member of United Scenic Artists and has been
working with the opera since 1986. He has designed
costumes for The Curtis Institute of Music,
Metropolitan Opera Guild, Arden Theater, and
many others.
Etymology: The Study of Words
The following exercises are designed to help you read more efficiently, by showing some examples of words derived from Greek
and Latin roots. Once you understand these basic elements, you will start to see them appearing all around you. Below is a
brief list of some very common roots that will help you with the exercises.
Roots, Suffixes and Prefixes
anthropo- man
claustro- confined
contra- against
cracy- rule
demo- people
dict- speak/spoken
ology- the study of
phobia- fear of
photo- light
pyro- fire
scope- examine
thermo- heat
ex- out
graph- write/written
macro- large
mania- obsession with
meter- measuring device
micro- small
Combining Exercise
Many commonly used words are made up from combinations of Greek and Latin roots. Using the definitions above, complete
each phrase by pairing an item from section A with an item from section B.
1. The academic study of the origin and history of man is known as:
2. A system of government in which the people rule themselves is:
3. The fear of tight spaces is called:
4. A device used to measure the temperature is called:
5. An obsession with fire is called:
6. An instrument which is used to examine very small objects is called: _________________________________________
7. To speak against something is to:
8. The physical representation of a captured image is called a:
9. An unnatural fear of large groups of people is known as:
10. A device used to measure very small distances is called a:
Sequence of the Story
The sequence of a story or play is very important for understanding the content. The sequence of events
explains how things happen and when they happen. After reading the libretto, place the following events in order.
Re-number the events from one to ten in the order that they occur in the opera. Write the act in which you find that
Enobarbus tells Antony and Cleopatra that Caesar is advancing with the Roman army.
ACT ___.
Caesar tells the Senate that Antony has given Cleopatra Cyprus, Lydia, and lower Syria.
Antony is condemned for his luxurious lifestyle in Egypt and his romance with Cleopatra.
Cleopatra’s ships are seen in the distance, fleeing back to Alexandria.
Antony marries Caesar's sister Octavia.
Antony dreams that he sees Cleopatra and declares that he will return to Egypt.
Hearing the false report that Cleopatra has killed herself, Antony falls on his sword.
After leaving Cleopatra, Antony is admonished by Caesar for neglecting his responsibilities.
Antony leaves to prepare his troops for battle, and Cleopatra gets her army ready as well.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
Cleopatra and her attendants use poisonous snakes to kill themselves.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
ACT ___.
Choose what you feel is the most important event in the sequence above and explain how, if changed, it would affect
the other events.
(Use additional paper if necessary.)
Illustrate the most important event you have chosen or ask your teacher if you can act out the scene with your
classmates. Discuss why you feel this scene is important with your classmates. How could you cause a change in
this scene and affect the rest of the story’s plot? Discuss this new view of the opera with your classmates or write a
new ending to the opera.
Make Your Own Synopsis
A synopsis is a concise summary or brief statement
of events. In writing a synopsis, the main points or
ideas are written and the supporting details are left
out. To do this successfully, we must make judgments on what are the most important facts or
Often you are asked after a day of school,
“How was your day?” or “What did you learn
today?” You know how to answer these questions
because you know what the important things you
did were.
In a small group, examine the main characters
of Antony and Cleopatra. How did the actions of
the characters move the plot forward? What were
the most important things which happened?
Make a word bank of the main characters. List
important adjectives which describe their
character traits. Then list the verbs or action
words which highlight their actions.
Descriptive Adjectives
Now write a brief account of the opera. Check it against the actual synopsis found on p. 23 of the activity
book. See which member of your group wrote the most comprehensive synopsis.
Use additional paper if needed.
Recognizing Facts and Opinions
The following lessons are designed to be worked on in pairs. Pick a partner with whom you can answer
the questions. After answering the questions, discuss your answers and the different opinions found in the
questions. How do these opinions make you feel? How can facts be misused when backing up opinion?
Read the following statements. Before each statement, write whether it is a fact or an opinion.
1. Charmian and Iras love Cleopatra.
_____ 2. Antony decieved Cleopatra and married another Octavia.
_____ 3. Enos feels loyalty towards Antony.
_____ 4. If Antony had really been loyal to Rome, he would not have become involved with Cleopatra.
_____ 5. Antony was a coward to kill herself.
_____ 6. Caesar scolded Antony in the Senate for neglecting his responsibilities as a General.
Write an opinion about each of the following topics. Support each opinion with two facts.
Supporting Your Opinions
1. Write “I believe” or “I think” four times. Then complete each phrase with a different statement regarding
the opera Antony and Cleopatra.
2.FIdentify which statements are fact and opinion by placing an ‘F’ or ‘O’ next to each one. Then combine the
two statements to make a sentence using the following connectives: since, because, therefore, thus, however.
O first one has been done for you.
_____ 1a. Roman General Antony loves the Egyptian Pharaoh Cleopatra.
_____ 1b. Antony is disloyal to Rome.
Sentence: Roman General Antony loves the Egyptian Pharaoh Cleopatra, therefore she is disloyal to Rome.
2a. Dorabella warn Cleopatra that Caesar would parade her through the streets as a prisoner.
2b. Dorabella was beguiled by Cleopatra’s beauty.
3a. Cleopatra was a great Pharaoh.
3b. She learned the language of the Egyptians.
4a. The soldiers fear that Hercules has lost his faith in Antony.
4b. They are foolish to believe in such myths.
5a. Charmian and Iras both kill themselves with an asp.
5b. They loved Cleopatra.
6a. Thinking that Cleopatra was dead, Antony killed himself.
6b. He should gotten proof before he fell on his sword.
Compose Your Own Review of Antony and Cleopatra
Use this word bank for ideas when composing your own review of the opera. Don’t forget that you can log your review on our
blog at http://operaphillysol.blogspot.com/
set designer
Perelman Theater
How to Write Poetry Like the Bard
Shakespeare is probably most famous for his plays, such as The Merchant of Venice, but his sonnets are almost equally well
known and admired. Shakespeare wrote 154 of these poems, most of which were published in a single collection and deal with
themes such as love, beauty, youth and mortality.
The sonnet is a distinct form of poem that originated in Italy. By Shakespeare’s time, there was an English version of the sonnet as
well. The English sonnet had a very specific formula that the poet usually followed:
Each sonnet has 14 lines made up of three quatrains (groups of four lines) and a final couplet (group of two lines). The
final couplet often provides a surprise ending or final thought to the poem.
The rhyme scheme for these lines is abab cdcd efef gg.
Like Shakespeare’s plays, sonnets are written in iambic pentameter—each line has ten syllables with alternating short
and long stresses. This pattern creates a rhythm in each line that sounds like di-DUM-di-DUM-di-DUM-di-DUM-di-DUM.
Shakespeare’s use of this formula was so successful that the English sonnet is often referred to as the Shakespearean
sonnet, regardless of who the poet is.
Here’s an example of one of Shakespeare’s most famous sonnets with elements of form labeled for you:
Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
1st Quatrain
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;
2nd Quatrain
And every fair from fair some time declines,
By chance, or nature's changing course, untrimm'd;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;
Nor shall Death brag thou wand'rest in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.
3rd Quatrain
Final Couplet
Why not try writing your own sonnet? It’s not easy, but when you’re done you’ll be writing like the great poets do! You could write
to or about a character in the opera or describe a scene or event in the story.
Character Analysis and Dramatic Motivation
We’ve heard the expression that actions speak louder than
words. Actions reflect who we are by showing our motivations
and intentions. In all forms of drama, whether it is a book, play,
movie, comic book, or opera, characters have some sort of
motivation in order to advance the action or plot of the story.
The actions in our everyday lives are also based upon
motivation such as: desire for better grades; desire to be a
good friend; desire to please our parents; desire to buy a CD,
or DVD, or computer game, etc. Write down your thoughts on
the topics below and discuss some of them with your classmates:
1. Describe Cleopatra’s personality. What characteristics does she show based upon her actions or motivations?
2. Describe how Ceasar acts towards Cleopatra and Antony.
3. What do you think motivates Ceasar to act as she does towards Cleopatra and Antony?
4. Antony’s wife in Rome, Italy does not appear in the opera. How do you think he treats her and acts around her?
5. What kinds of motivation do these characters demonstrate:
Caesar: _________________________________________________________________________________________
Antony: _________________________________________________________________________________________
Enobarbus: _______________________________________________________________________________________
Conflicts and Loves in Antony and Cleopatra
Draw a picture of Antony in the middle circle. In the outer circles, draw a picture of those individuals with whom he has a direct
relationship. Then in the boxes pointing toward the middle circle, write how that individual feels about the central character. In
the boxes pointing to the outer circles, write how Cleopatra feels about that individual.
What Happens Next?/Alternate Endings
Using the space below, write what you think will happen next to the characters in Antony and Cleopatra.
Alternatively, you could write a new ending for the libretto based on what you would have liked to have
seen to the characters.
Ask Why?
Have you ever watched a movie or tv show and wondered why something happened or why someone acted
they way they did? Sometime things happen that are too coincidental to be realistic, or characters don’t act
or react in realistic ways.
Take a moment to write five questions about the opera Antony and Cleopatra all starting with the word why
and how. You can ask questions about a character’s motivation, about the production’s setting of place
and time, and about sets and costumes. Once you’ve completed your questions, teachers can use these
questions to begin a discussion about the opera.
WHY ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
WHY ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
WHY ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
WHY ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
WHY ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
HOW ___________________________________________________________________________________________________
Pennsylvania Department of Education Academic Standards
Pennsylvania’s public schools shall teach, challenge and support every student to realize his or her maximum
potential and to acquire the knowledge and skills needed to:
Academic Standards for Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening 1.1. Learning to Read Independently GRADE 5 D. Identify the basic ideas
and facts in text using strategies (e.g., prior knowledge, illustrations and headings) and information from other sources to make predictions
about text. 1.1.8. GRADE 8 E. Expand a reading vocabulary by identifying and correctly using idioms and words with literal and figurative
meanings. Use a dictionary or related reference. 1.1.11. GRADE 11 H. Demonstrate fluency and comprehension in reading. Read a variety of
genres and types of text. Demonstrate comprehension. 1.2. Reading Critically in All Content Areas GRADES 5, 8, 11. A. Read and understand essential content of informational texts and documents in all academic areas. 1.3. Reading, Analyzing and Interpreting Literature GRADE
5 E. Analyze drama as information source, entertainment, persuasion or transmitter of culture. 1.3.8. GRADE 8 E. Analyze drama to determine
the reasons for a character’s actions, taking into account the situation and basic motivation of the character. 1.3.11. GRADE 11 E. Analyze
how a scriptwriter’s use of words creates tone and mood, and how choice of words advances the theme or purpose of the work. 1.4. Types of
Writing GRADES 5, 8, 11. GRADE 5 A. Write poems, plays and multi-paragraph stories (GRADES 8 & 11 - and short stories). 1.4.5, 8, 11.
C. Write persuasive pieces (Review of Opera Experience, p. 78). 1.5. Quality of Writing GRADES 5, 8, 11 A. Write with a sharp, distinct focus.
1.6. Speaking and Listening GRADES 5, 8, 11. B. Listen to selections of literature (fiction and/or nonfiction).C. Speak using skills appropriate to formal speech situations. E. Participate in small and large group discussions and presentations. F. Use media for learning purposes. 1.8.
Research GRADES 5, 8, 11. A. Select and refine a topic for research. B. Locate information using appropriate sources and strategies. C. Organize,
summarize and present the main ideas from research.
Academic Standards for Mathematics 2.1. Numbers, Number Systems and Number Relationships 2.1.8. GRADE 8 A. Represent and use numbers in equivalent forms (e.g., integers, fractions, decimals, percents, exponents, scientific notation, square roots). 2.2. Computation and
Estimation 2.2.5. GRADE 5 A. Create and solve word problems involving addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of whole numbers. 2.5
Mathematical Problem Solving and Communication 2.5.11. GRADE 11 A. Select and use appropriate mathematical concepts and techniques
from different areas of mathematics and apply them to solving non-routine and multi-step problems.
Academic Standards for Science and Technology 3.1. Unifying Themes 3.1.10. GRADE 10 E. Describe patterns of change in nature, physical
and man made systems. •Describe how fundamental science and technology concepts are used to solve practical problems (e. g., momentum,
Newton’s laws of universal gravitation, tectonics, conservation of mass and energy, cell theory, theory of evolution, atomic theory, theory of relativity, Pasteur’s germ theory, relativity, heliocentric theory, gas laws, feedback systems). 3.2. Inquiry and Design GRADE 7 Apply process
knowledge to make and interpret observations. GRADE 10 Apply process knowledge and organize scientific and technological phenomena in
varied ways. GRADE 12 Evaluate experimental information for appropriateness and adherence to relevant science processes. 3.3. Biological
Sciences 3.3.10. GRADE 10 D. Explain the mechanisms of the theory of evolution. 3.7. Technological Devices 3.7.7. GRADE 7 E. Explain basic
computer communications systems. Describe the organization and functions of the basic parts that make up the World Wide Web. (Check
operaphila.org to see photos of the rehearsals and sets.) See Teacher’s Guide for additional science lessons.
Academic Standards for Civics and Government 5.2. Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship 5.2.12. GRADE 12 C. Interpret the causes of
conflict in society and analyze techniques to resolve those conflicts.
Academic Standards for Geography 7.1. Basic Geographic Literacy 7.1.6. GRADE 6 A. Describe geographic tools and their uses. •Basis on
which maps, graphs and diagrams are created. 7.3. The Human Characteristics of Places and Regions 7.3.6. GRADE 6 B. Explain the human
characteristics of places and regions by their cultural characteristics.
Academic Standards for History 8.2. Pennsylvania History 8.2.9. GRADE 9 8.2.12. GRADE 12 Pennsylvania’s public schools shall teach, challenge and support every student... skills needed to analyze the interaction of cultural, economic, geographic, political and social relations to. A.
Analyze the... cultural contributions of individuals... to Pennsylvania history from 1787 to 1914. • Cultural and Commercial Leaders (e.g.,
Academy of Music architects Napoleon Le Brun & Gustav Rungé, opera star Marian Anderson). 8.3. U.S. History 8.3.9 GRADE 9 B. Identify
and analyze primary documents, material artifacts and historic sitesimportant in United States history from 1787 to 1914. • Historic Places (e. g.,
Academy of Music). 8.4. World History 8.4.6 GRADE 6 A. Identify and explain how individuals and groups made significant political and cultural contributions to world history. 8.4.12. GRADE 12 C. Evaluate how continuity and change throughout history has impacted belief systems
and religions since 1450 C.E.
Academic Standards for the Arts and Humanities 9.1. Production, Performance and Exhibition of Dance, Music,Theatre and Visual Arts A.
Know and use the elements and principles of each art form to create works in the arts and humanities. I. Know where arts events, performances and exhibitions occur and how to gain admission. 9.2. Historical and Cultural Contexts C. Relate works in the arts to varying styles and genre
and to the periods in which they were created (e.g., Renaissance, Classical, Modern, Post-Modern, Contemporary...). D. Analyze a work of art
from its historical and cultural perspective. E. Analyze how historical events and culture impact forms, techniques and purposes of works in
the arts. F. Know and apply appropriate vocabulary used between social studies and the arts and humanities.
The School District of Philadelphia
School Reform Commission
Robert L. Archie Jr., Esq., Chairman
Sounds of Learning™ was established by a
generous grant from The Annenberg
Denise McGregor Armbrister, member
Joseph A. Dworetzky, member
Amb. David F. Girard-diCarlo, Ret., member
Johnny Irizarry, member
Dr. Arlene C. Akerman
Superintendent of Schools
Pamela Brown
Interim Chief Academic Officer
Dennis W. Creedon, Ed.D.
Administrator, Office of Creative
and Performing Arts
Opera Company of Philadelphia
Robert B. Driver
Artistic Director
Corrado Rovaris
Music Director
David B. Devan
Executive Director
Michael Bolton
Director of Community Programs
Opera Company of Philadelphia
Corporate Council
Park Hyatt Philadelphia at the Bellevue
Pennsylvania Trust
Quaker Chemical
Wachovia Wealth Management
The Opera Company of Philadelphia is supported by major grants from The William Penn
Foundation, The Pew Charitable Trusts, and
The Lenfest Foundation.
Additional support is provided by the
Independence Foundation and the Horace W.
Goldsmith Foundation.
The Opera Company of
Philadelphia receives state arts
funding support through
a grant from the Pennsylvania
Council on the Arts, a state
agency funded by the
of Pennsylvania.
Dedicated funding for the Sounds of
Learning™ program has been provided by:
$20,000 to $49,999
Hamilton Family Foundation
Lincoln Financial Group Foundation
Presser Foundation
Universal Health Services
Written and produced by:
Opera Company of Philadelphia
Community Programs Department
1420 Locust Street, Suite 210
Philadelphia, PA, U.S.A. 19102
Tel: (215) 893-3600, ext. 6102460
Fax: (215) 893-7801
Michael Bolton
Director of Community Programs
[email protected]
Aedín Larkin
Community Programs Intern
$10,000 to $19,999
The ARAMARK Charitable Fund at the Vanguard
Charitable Endowment Program
Citizens Bank Foundation
Ellis A. Gimbel Charitable Trust
Ethel Sergeant Clark Smith Memorial Fund
Eugene Garfield Foundation
GlaxoSmithKline Foundation
Hirsig Family Fund
Morgan Stanley Foundation
The Patricia Kind Family Foundation
PNC Bank Foundation
Samuel S. Fels Fund
[email protected]
Special thanks to:
Robert B. Driver
Dr. Dennis W. Creedon
Creator, Sounds of Learning™
Curriculum Consultant
Laura Jacoby
Tullo Migliorini
Kimmel Center Ushers
Debra Malinics Advertising
Design Concept
Kalnin Graphics
$5,000 to $9,999
Alpin J. & Alpin W. Cameron Memorial Trust
Bank of America Charitable Foundation
McLean Contributionship
Sheila Fortune Foundation
Wachovia Foundation
$1,000 to $4,999
Dolfinger-McMahon Foundation
Louis N. Cassett Foundation
Reading Anthracite Company
Center City Film and Video
R. A. Friedman
The Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Free Library of Philadelphia
Print and Picture Department
Opera Company of Philadelphia
1420 Locust Street, Suite 210, Philadelphia, PA 19102 T (215) 893-3600 F (215) 893-7801 www.operaphila.org
OPERA at the Academy
Madama Butterfly
Tea: A Mirror of Soul
La Traviata
October 9, 11m, 14, 16, 18m
February 19, 21m, 24, 26, 28m
May 7, 9m, 12, 14, 16m
OPERA @ the Perelman
Antony & Cleopatra *
Orphée & Euridice
March 17, 19, 21m
June 19m, 23, 25
* The Kimmel Center Presents Curtis Opera Theatre’s production in association with Opera Company of Philadelphia