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An Opera in English? In a Bar in Conway?

Posted: July 9, 2014 - 7:00pm

That’s what is happening this Thursday, July 10, at King’s Live Music at 8 p.m. Preston Palmer Studios is excited to present “The Face on the Bar Room Floor.”

This is a one-act American opera by Henry Mollicone, set in the Teller House Bar in Central City, Colo. This opera, all sung in English, transports you back in time to the Gold Rush era, to hear a cautionary tale of love, love lost, and the selfish need for gain...and how events may repeat themselves in the future.

While King’s and Preston Palmer Studios collaborate on many things such as “In the Round” — a songwriter’s showcase, this is the first time they have brought an opera. “I couldn’t be more excited to work with Marcus (of King’s) on this” says Palmer. “Opera often comes off as high-brow and inaccessible. “Faces” is neither of those. You can understand what they are saying, and it only lasts 30 minutes! Come try something different with us, you will love it!”

The three person cast consists of:

Tenor Matt Newman, native of St. Louis, Mo., has lived in Conway since moving here for his education. Newman has sung with various choirs and symphonies around the region and country. Some of his repertoire includes: “La Boheme,” “The Barber of Seville,” “Mozart’s Requiem,” “Bach’s Magnificat,” “Handel’s Messiah,” and “Gianni Schicchi.”

Ronald McDaniel II, baritone, holds a MA in Community Music with top honors from the University of Limerick and a Bachelors of Music with a concentration in vocal performance from the University of Central Arkansas. Ron has performed in various operas, plays, films and concerts in the U.S. and abroad, in works such as “Gianni Schichi” and “Die Fledermaus,” among others. He teaches voice alongside his wife Jaimee at Preston Palmer Studios, and sings in the early music group Schola Sacra. 

Jaimee Nicole Jensen holds a MA in Ritual Chant and Song with top honors from the University of Limerick and a BA from UCA. She has performed in the U.S. and abroad, in various operas, chamber concerts, choral concerts, liturgical dramas and films, in addition to directing ensembles and conducting various workshops. Jaimee serves as artistic director and conductor for Schola Sacra, an early music vocal ensemble based in Conway. Jaimee currently teaches voice alongside husband Ron at Preston Palmer Studios in Conway.

The opera will be preceded by a short showcase of instructors and students from Preston Palmer Studios. The event starts at 8 p.m. with the opera beginning at 9.

 

 

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