Saturday, April 25 – Saturday, May 9, 2015
A classic tale of sin and redemption, the opera opens with the aging Dr. Faust in despair and near suicide. His passions reawakened by the sound of young men and women outside his window, he curses God and summons Satan. The Devil, Méphistophélès, appears and producing the beguiling vision of a young village girl, Marguerite, convinces Faust to exchange his soul for the chance to revisit youth and desire.
This was the fourth production of Faust undertaken by AVA in its 80-year history. First presented in 1945, a condensed version was staged in the 1961-62 season and a full production was again mounted in 2003. The 2003 production featured bass-baritone Burak Bilgili as Méphistophélès, tenor James Valenti as Faust, soprano Latonia Moore as Marguerite and mezzo-soprano Nicole Piccolomini as Marthe. All four have gone on to successful international careers with Mr. Bilgili debuting with the Metropolitan Opera in 2004, Mr. Valenti in 2010, Ms. Moore in 2012 and Ms. Piccolomini singing at Teatro alla Scala, Deutsche Oper Berlin and Opera Leipzig, among others.
AVA’s association with Faust in Philadelphia also includes 1971 alumnus James Morris’ 1975 performance as Méphistophélès in The Opera Company of Philadelphia’s debut production at the Academy of Music following the merger of the Philadelphia Lyric Opera Company and the Philadelphia Grand Opera Company. The former OCP is now known as Opera Philadelphia.
Faust - Diego Silva, Mackenzie Whitney
Marguerite - Melinda Whittington, Huanhuan Ma
Méphistophélès - André Courville, Anthony Schneider
Valentin - Michael Adams, Jared Bybee
Siébel - Julia Dawson, Alexandra Schenck
Wagner - Jorge Espino
Marthe - Kristina Nicole Lewis