'Night At The Opera' Features Concert, Elegant Dinner

SOCORRO, N.M. April 23, 2014 – Celebrate May Day with a “Night at the Opera” with the Santa Fe Opera Apprentices at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 1, at New Mexico Tech’s Macey Center – and travel the extra mile and celebrate in style, with an elegant dinner and a social hour starting at 5:30 p.m.

New Mexico Tech’s Tech Club-Club Macey is hosting the event, in concert with the university’s Performing Arts Series.


Santa Fe Opera music director Kirt Pavitt (center) poses with this year's featured singers: (from left) Andrew Lovato, Abigail Mitchell, Rachell Hall and Joshua Dennis. They will perform a free concert May 1 at Macey Center.


While there is no admission charge for the performance itself, tickets are being sold for the dinner: $20 for club members and $25 for non-members. The deadline to buy dinner tickets is Monday, April 28. 

Contact the PAS Office at 575-835-5866 for dinner ticket information.

The Socorro performance is the next-to-last stop for the three-week spring tour, which began with a public concert in Truth or Consequences on April 11, and closes May 2 in Moriarty.

“This is a wonderful opportunity to introduce opera to the community-at-large,” said PAS Director Ronna Kalish said. “We also encourage people to join us for the social hour and dinner, to truly make it a ‘Night at the Opera.’”

Once again, music director Kirt Pavitt will accompany a troupe of young singers and instrumentalists on tour, his 15th as both music director and pianist for the Opera’s spring trek. Pavitt has distinguished himself as both a soloist and collaborative artist, and has performed at Avery Fisher and Alice Tully Halls in New York.

He and tour manager Melissa Sardella will pack the opera van and head south with this season’s singers, all former apprentices. Sopranos Abigail Mitchell and Rachel Hall, tenor Joshua Dennis, and baritone Andrew Lovato will perform “True North” and a selection of songs and arias from the Opera’s repertoire.

True North is the story of two young couples who have appeared on previous tours together and meet by coincidence in an airport. They become reacquainted and share the stories of their lives. The production incorporates music from opera, musical theater, and popular culture.

Kathleen Clawson and Andrea Fellows Walters wrote the story, with original music by Frederick Frahm. The singers, all former apprentices, are sopranos Abigail Mitchell and Rachel Hall, tenor Joshua Dennis, and baritone Andrew Lovato.

The Spring Opera Tour was launched more than 20 years ago, performing in cities and towns in New Mexico (and Lubbock and El Paso) for students and families who may not have an opportunity to travel to Santa Fe.

Additional tour support is provided by the Guilds of The Santa Fe Opera Inc.; New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs; the City of Santa Fe Arts Commission and the 1% Lodgers’ Tax; and the National Endowment for the Arts: Art Works.

Chartwells executive chef Hassan Abassars has created a menu for the evening that features a choice between Moroccan lemon chicken with lemon saffron rice and dill-glazed carrots; or angel hair pasta pomodoro (served with grilled shrimp and roasted garlic), fattoush salad and key lime pie.In August 2013, Hassan was selected as “Chef of the Year” for the Chartwells West Region.

– NMT –

By Valerie Kimble/New Mexico Tech