Entertainment Magazine: Arizona: Phoenix: Events: November

Mexico City's "Opera Joven" debuts

Various locations around Phoenix

The Mexico City-based performance group, Opera Joven, will make its U.S. debut in Phoenix Nov. 23 to Dec. 13.

Founded in 2009, Opera Joven director Moises Martinez says he was inspired to form the group by a desire to bring a fresh edge to opera by fusing classical, contemporary and traditional Mexican music, including folkloric influences, to create a unique repertoire of crossover performances for diverse audiences. The group consists of five classically-trained vocalist and a pianist who bring a fresh approach to operatic and classical music.

“We know not everyone is into the classics, so because we are Opera Joven (Young Opera), we have put our own spin on the genre by mixing in popular, traditional and folkloric influences that has been universally appreciated by audiences everywhere we go,” said Martinez.

Several performances are planned for Phoenix, including a 2-hour concert at The Orpheum Theater, 7:30 p.m., November 25 called Gala de Musica Mexicana that features a mix of popular Mexican standards and contemporary selections and operatic pieces; a First Friday show at the Phoenix Art Museum on Dec. 4, and a special musical tribute to La Virgen de Guadalupe on Dec. 11 at St. Mary’s Basilica in downtown Phoenix.

“New Carpa Theater is thrilled to host Opera Joven for its American debut. I’m a fan of opera, and what I love about Opera Joven is that it’s giving the music a shot in the arm that broadens the music’s appeal in a variety of ways,” said James Garcia, producing artistic director for New Carpa Productions in Phoenix.

Garcia said Opera Joven has also agreed to do several free school performances and workshops across the Valley, including short concerts at Carl Hayden High School, Central High School, Phoenix College and the Espiritu School in South Phoenix.

The group also will perform on First Friday at the Phoenix Art Museum and at St. Mary’s Basilica.

“The St. Mary’s show is a first-of-its-kind for the Valley. It’s mean to replicate the historic performances that have been staged for decades at the Basilica in Mexico City in honor of La Virgen de Guadalupe,” said Garcia. “The Catholic Diocese is inviting all comers from across the community to experience this very special holiday event.”

Opera Joven has performed across Mexico with groups such as the Choral Opera at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, the Choral Symphonic Orchestra in the State of Mexico and most recently at the historic Castle in Chapultepec Park in Mexico City. This is Opera Joven’s debut in the United States.

For ticket information, visit newcarpa.org or contact [email protected] or 623-252-2772. For more information about Opera Joven visit www.operajoven.mx.


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