The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera, the house opera company of the Bergen Performing Arts Center (bergenPAC), will hold its annual winter Open House on Saturday, January 14, 2017. The annual event will be held at 44 Armory Street in Englewood, New Jersey at 2:00 p.m. In the event of inclement weather, the Open House will be held the following week on Saturday, January 21 at the same time and location.

Artistic Director Lucine Amara, a Met Opera luminary, invites the public to attend the free event and learn more about the grand opera company’s 2017 season. The program features a short concert of vocalists performing arias and duets from Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida. Opportunities will be discussed to get involved in the nonprofit opera company performing in the Verismo Opera Chorus, acting as supernumeraries in non-speaking and non-singing roles, and volunteering behind-the-scenes. Exhibits will display memorabilia and photos from Verismo Opera’s 28 years of producing grand operas, sponsoring an annual international vocal competition, presenting concerts, holding master classes, giving operalogues, and training the stars of tomorrow.

Open House to Present Company’s Staff & Trustees

Ms. Amara, Music Director/Principal Conductor Lucy Arner, Stage Director Evelyn La Quaif, Chorus Director Michael Wittenburg and members of the board of trustees and staff will be available to discuss Verismo Opera’s mission, vision, and history. They will introduce the grand opera company’s new 2017 production of Aida that will be performed on April 23, 2017 at bergenPAC, located at 30 North Van Brunt Street in Englewood, New Jersey, at 3:00 p.m. Tickets are now on sale and may be purchased online , in person at the theatre’s box office at 30 North Van Brunt Street, Englewood, New Jersey, and by calling (201) 227-1030 or toll-free at 1-888-PACSHOW.

During the Open House, Verismo Opera's singers will perform excerpts from AIDA. Photo Credit: Marilyn Monsanto

The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera’s Open House will present a concert of arias and duets from AIDA. Photo Credit: Marilyn Monsanto

Verismo Opera Chorus Auditions

The Verismo Opera Chorus will hold auditions at the end of the program. Male singers, representing all vocal ranges and ages, are especially needed. Adult applicants should have a rudimentary working ability to read music and experience singing. Teenagers, ages 17 to 19, may also audition for the Verismo Opera Chorus and must read music and have some prior vocal experience singing with a school, choir, or another performing group or organization. Previous stage experience and foreign language study are desirable. Applicants who have these skills and experiences will be given preference.

The audition consists of singing five note scales. During the audition process, each singer’s range and vocal category will be determined. Applicants do not need to bring a song or music to the audition. An application may be downloaded and completed.  For information or to schedule an appointment to audition for the chorus, call (201) 886-0561 or contact electronically.

The Open House site is handicapped accessible. A parking lot has a designated handicapped parking space. The New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera is committed to ensuring its programs and services are accessible to all. Members of the public requiring a special accommodation or with specific questions about the physical features of a facility where Verismo Opera performs may call (201) 886-0561 at least two weeks prior to the event.

The 2017 season is made possible, in part, with funds provided by the New Jersey Council on the Arts/Department of State, through grant funds administered by the Bergen County Department of Parks, Division of Cultural and Historic Affairs. Other supporters include Children’s Aid Foundation, Robert J. Campbell, MD, Cesare L. Santeramo, KSJ, Paul Weiss Matching Fund, The Gerda Lissner Foundation, Inc., and Vanguard Charitable Endowment Fund.

For further information about the Open House’s program, chorus auditions, supernumerary and volunteer openings or additional information about Verismo Opera, call (201) 886-0561 or send an e-mail. Follow and like the grand opera company on Facebook and Twitter. Sign up for the organization’s monthly newsletter to be delivered directly to your inbox with announcements about events, concerts, productions, auditions, jobs, competitions, and other opportunities.