Béatrice et Bénédict

"When I said I would die a bachelor, I did not think I would live till I were married."


                                 Composer: Hector Berlioz, Libretto adapted from Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing


 

Production Photos

               Cast:

Leonato:

James Mills

Hero:

Erin Brittain 

Beatrice:

Elspeth Davis

Ursule:

Jami Tyzik

Claudio:

Robert Maril

Benedict:

Byron Singleton

Don Pedro:

Richard Bozic

Somarone:

Scott Elliott


Director:

Lawrence Brittain

 

Conductor:
Grant Gilman

 Opera Synopsis: 

ACT I:   Don Pedro, prince of Aragon, is visiting Messina after a successful military victory over the enemy, which is celebrated by all of Sicily. He is joined by two friends and fellow soldiers, Claudio and Bénédict. They are greeted by Léonato, governor of Messina, together with his daughter, Héro, and niece, Béatrice.

 

Héro awaits the return of her fiancé, Claudio. Béatrice inquires about and scorns Bénédict. They trade insults and tease each other. Bénédict swears to his friends that he will never marry. Later, Claudio and Pedro scheme to trick Bénédict into marrying Béatrice. Knowing that he is listening, Léonato assures Pedro that Béatrice loves Bénédict. Bénédict decides to pursue her. Upon hearing this, Bénédict resolves that Béatrice's love must not go unrequited. Meanwhile, elsewhere, Héro and her attendant, Ursula, manage to play a similar trick on Béatrice who now believes that Bénédict is secretly in love with her.Somarone, A local music teacher, whose gifts of composition are questionable, arrives with his newest composition and recruits everyone to participate in a rehearsal, offering his "talents" to Don Pedro for the wedding celebration.

 

ACT II: To celebrate the pending wedding of Claudio and Héro, Léonato hosts a party.  Somarone, drunk and simultaneously furiously composing a new piece, leads the group in song and everybody enjoys themselves except Béatrice who realizes that she has fallen in love with Bénédict. As she turns to leave she is met by Bénédict, prompting an exchange in which they both attempt to conceal their love for each other. They are interrupted by the bridal procession. As Hero and Claudio complete their wedding vows, it is announced that a second couple is due to be married. Léonato asks a second couple to come forward. Bénédict summons the courage to declare his love to Béatrice and the two sign the wedding contract along with Héro and Claudio.

 

       Centennial Hall

 * This is a past performance

May 8th at 6:00 & May 10th at 3:00

Centennial Hall
Newark Public Library

Newark, NJ
www.npl.org

$5 suggested donation

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