The Vermont Philharmonic’s 60th anniversary season kicks off with the annual Opera Gala, conducted by Lou Kosma, on Saturday, Oct. 20, at 7 p.m. at the Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center in Stowe, and on Sunday, Oct. 21, at 2 p.m. at the Barre Opera House, 6 N. Main St., Barre.

The program includes Italian opera masterpieces and arias in the Bel Canto style — lyrical, languishing, ironic and enchanting. The orchestra will perform the intense “Intermezzo” from Leoncavallo’s “Pagliacci,” and the overture to Wagner’s “Rienzi.”

The concert features three young singers who are winners of the prestigious performance awards from the 2018 Bel Canto Institute in Florence, Italy.

Sofie Lund-Tonnesen, soprano, is a native of Denmark and a graduate of the Royal Danish Conservatory in Copenhagen. She will sing arias from Donizetti’s “L’Elisir d’amore” and “Don Pasquale.”

Johanna Nylund, soprano, is from Finland, and has studied in Helsinki, Trieste, and Copenhagen. She will sing arias from Donizetti’s “La figlia del Regimento” and Verdi’s “La Traviata.”

Danielle Alexis Smith, mezzo-soprano, is a graduate of Stanford University. She will perform songs by Stefano Donaudy and Paolo Tosti, an aria from Bellini’s “Norma,” and a Donizetti duet with Lund-Tonnesen.

Tickets: Spruce Peak Performing Arts Center, $20 advance, $25 at door; 760-4634; Barre Opera House, $20 adults, $15 seniors, $5 students, $35 family; 476-8188,


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