PITTSBURGH - "The Secret Marriage" is based on an 18th century marriage among a wealthy group of English aristocrats.
Cimarosa's "Secret Marriage" was a first for me. It isn't filled with Mozart-style melodies, and this was the first time I attended a Pittsburgh Opera at the Capa Theater (Carnegie Melon University and the Pittsburgh's commitment for training resident artists).
Christopher Hahn, general director of the Pittsburgh Opera, was delighted that this year's resident artists' program had the opportunity to showcase this opera buffa - comic opera - for the first time. The Pittsburgh resident-artists were all young but extremely talented.
"Paolina," was sung by Juan Jose DeLeon, who possessed a strong, dynamic voice that matched the exciting voice of the soprano "Carolina," sung by Meredith Lustig and the bass/baritone of Joseph Barron, who also sang "Geronimo."
Meredith Lustig is scheduled for the Pittsburgh Opera in 2013 for "Matrimonio Segreto," "La Cenerentola" as well as perform at the Erie Symphony Orchestra, the Aspen Opera Theatre, the Glimmerglass Opera Festival and the New York City Opera.
The director, Stephanie Harvey, noted a desire to update the 17th century comic opera to 1912. The unique setting by designer Brandon McNee used enlarged paintings as windows through which the singers enter and exit and sing high off the ground. Art lovers will recognize Van Dyck and other. The conductor was Sarah Jobin, who has conducted the San Francisco Opera and the Avignon France Opera. "Il Matrimonio Segreto" plays Feb. 13 at Capa Theater.
For information and tickets, call (412) 281-0912 or go to www.pittsburghopera.org.