The Atlanta Opera Blog

April 8, 2016

Pick up Your Q: Costume Designer/Coordinator Joanna Schmink

Atlanta Opera Costume Coordinator Joanna Schmink spends most of her time in the costume shop sourcing, curating, altering, and piecing together costumes from other designers and productions.  For Romeo and Juliet, she designed and created everything from scratch for this spectacular grand opera with an equally grand cast. We talked to her about the joys and challenges of the job. The Atlanta Opera: Who or what influenced you to get into costume design? Joanna Schmink: Growing up, my parents involved […]
March 14, 2016

Behind the Scenes: Curt Olds as Major-General Stanley

Bass Curt Olds is a world-renown singer and performer. He’s covered many roles in Gilbert & Sullivan’s greatest works, most recently in our mounting of The Pirates of Penzance. We went backstage with Curt to watch his transformation into the Major-General and to learn more about his process, pre-performance rituals and tips for getting into character. I always hate the process of putting on heavy wigs and makeup for a production, but I love the look afterwards. The adhesive, spirit gum or […]
March 7, 2016

Production Notes: The Pirates of Penzance (by Nicholas Beard)

All photos by Jeff Roffman We’re forever fascinated by pirates. It’s a child’s fantasy to battle pirates – think Peter Pan vs. Captain Hook – but it’s also an adult metaphor elastic enough for a range of social commentary. By our romanticized view, pirates live off their wits, live a hedonist life. They have escaped the conventions of a society which, as every free-spirit knows, stifles creativity. As escapist fiction, literature (Defoe’s “Robinson Crusoe” from 1719) and opera (Bellini’s “Il […]
February 5, 2016

Pick Up Your Q: Bass Kevin Burdette

      Bass Kevin Burdette is currently appearing as Stobrod/Blindman in Cold Mountain at Opera Philadelphia, but he’ll be with us soon to start rehearsing his role as The Pirate King in The Pirates of Penzance, opening March 5th. We sat down with the “Robin Williams of opera” to pick his brain about preparing for the role, Gilbert and Sullivan’s influence, and his thoughts on Queen Victoria.                                  […]
November 12, 2015

Pick Up Your Q: GLMMR

The last time we spoke with David Adam Moore (Light and Sound: David Adam Moore has Something to Say) and Vita Tzykun (Pick Up your Q: Costume Designer Vita Tzykun), the minds behind GLMMR were working tirelessly on previous productions with us. We’re lucky to have them back again for Soldier Songs, where they’ve designed stunning and carefully crafted projections and imagery for this gripping, contemporary opera.  The Atlanta Opera: You’re back in Atlanta! Any new finds since you were last […]
November 11, 2015

Pick Up Your Q with Alan Higgs

You may know Alan Higgs from his role in The Marriage of Figaro as Antonio, or his dual role in La bohème as Alcindoro and Benoit. This season, he will sing the iconic role of the Pirate King in Gilbert & Sullivan’s classic operetta, The Pirates of Penzance. As part of the Studio Tour, Higgs will perform in front of hundreds of students in schools across Atlanta and the greater metropolitan area. We caught up with Alan to learn more about […]
November 6, 2015

Behind the Scenes with Matthew Worth

 Baritone Matthew Worth (who sings the role of the Soldier in “Soldier Songs”) opens up about his biggest influences, his real connection with Lieutenant Audebert (Silent Night), and his love for live theater. He also shares four words of sage advice for up-and-coming artists. The Atlanta Opera: Did you grow up around opera? Matthew Worth: Nope. We were more of a folk & rock music house. There was a lot of Paul Simon, Peter Paul & Mary, Billy Joel, and James […]
October 19, 2015

The Atlanta Opera Ball

The 2015 Opera Ball was a masked affair held at the St. Regis Atlanta. Ball Chair Mary Calhoun hosted the fabuluous evening with The Opera, which honored Martha Thompson Dinos. The night was filled with dancing, dining, live & silent auctions, and performances by Mezzo-soprano Jamie Barton and Tenor Russell Thomas. Photos by Ninh Chau. Usage of any images on this blog is restricted to The Atlanta Opera and approved news websites. Any other usage, particularly for professional purposes, must […]
October 8, 2015

On the Road with Nicholas Brownlee

The Atlanta Opera: How do you balance getting into character in each production while making yourself comfortable in a new city?  Nicholas Brownlee: I actually think this could be the hardest part of the career: Getting settled in a new city. I always find the closet Target, subway and pharmacy immediately, that always helps me feel acquainted with the area I am in and…it’s TARGET. What do you think of Atlanta? Any particular place, meal, or adventure stick out so […]
October 5, 2015

A Life of Travel with Leah Partridge

The Atlanta Opera: How do you balance getting into character in each production while making yourself comfortable in a new city?  Leah Partridge: I find it easy now because I have been doing this for 13 years. Being on the road gives me time to be alone and that is when my creativity and ideas have space to flow. However, I am singing at home now and I find that because I am not struggling with trying to find the […]