Soprano star Brown’s appearance in ’Tosca’ highlights Indy Opera season schedule

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Indianapolis Opera General Director David Starkey didn’t take long to pinpoint what he most looks forward to about the organization’s 2022-23 schedule.

“The highlight will be Angela Brown singing her first ‘Tosca’ in her hometown,” Starkey said. “She has sung Aida and Porgy and Bess, but never ‘Tosca.’ While this will not be her last, it will be her only ‘Tosca’ for Indy and yet she brings her world-class experience to the opera stage as one of the best modern-day Toscas ever. She will feature the famous aria in the ‘Opera In the Park’ concert.”

The fifth annual “Opera in the Park” opens the 48th season schedule at 7 p.m. Sept. 10 at McAllister Amphitheater at Garfield Park in Indianapolis.

Giacomo Puccini’s “Tosca” featuring Brown, an Indianapolis-born soprano, is set for Nov. 11-13 at The Tarkington at the Center for the Performing Arts in Carmel.

Brown, Indianapolis Opera’s artistic and education ambassador, has performed the title of Floria Tosca several times in other cities, but this will be her first time performing the entire opera in the Indianapolis area.

“I love the music drama,” Brown said of the opera, which is set during the French Revolutionary War. “She goes through so many emotions throughout the whole evening from being jealous to being in love to being upset and angry and then being so upset she kills somebody and then she jumps and kills herself.”

Brown said she remembers seeing Tim Noble perform in an Indianapolis Opera production of “Tosca” when she was a student at Indiana University.

“I always said I would love to do ‘Tosca’ with Tim Noble,” Brown said. “I got a chance to sing a scene with him, but he’s not singing anymore. But at least I got a chance to do it (in Indianapolis).”

At “Opera in the Park,” Brown will be joined by pianist Joshua A. Thompson, saxophonist Jared Thompson and baritone Daniel Narducci along with the Indianapolis Opera’s resident artists and chorus.

“You always get a little bit of everything,” Brown said. “It’s something for everyone to enjoy. You have musical theater. Jared brings the jazz because he has Premium Blend and Joshua is a classical pianist in his own right. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Brown was scheduled to perform as “Aida” in Portland Aug. 7. Before “Tosca,” she will perform in “Charlie Parker’s Yardbird” at the Dayton Opera Oct. 7-9.

The Indianapolis Opera schedule continues with two performances in 2023. The Contemporary Workshop Series will feature “Gallantry & More” at 4 p.m.  March 25-26 at the Basile Opera Center in Indianapolis. “Gallantry” is a one-act comedic opera. In addition, there will be a world premiere of a new operatic work.

Wolfgang Mozart’s classic “The Magic Flute” is set for May 5-7 at The Toby at Newfields in Indianapolis. The opera features some of Mozart’s most recognizable melodies. It follows the journey of Prince Tamino as he tries to rescue his true love Pamina from the wrath of dark sorcerer Sarastro.

For more, visit indyopera.org.

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