A Christmas Opera for Families
Illumination Opera presents "Only a Miracle" - a Christmas opera by Seymour Barab to get families in the holiday spirit.
The Christmas season is a time for miracles and showing kindness to others—two things that are the main focus in Illumination Opera's performance of "Only a Miracle". The show is tomorrow at 3 p.m. at the Chelmsford Center for the Arts.
Illumination Opera, a group of local singers that have worked together for many years through different organizations and events, formed in 2008 when they decided to take their love for singing to the next level. Their first production as a group, Hansel and Gretel, was such a hit that they have continued on to put together around four shows a year.
"We had this idea that if we do these shows and they are successful, then we will have the funding to cover our costs and be able to do even more down the road," said Susan Julian Gates, producer of "Only a Miracle." "We love to see people get engaged in opera—it makes them want to see more."
Seymour Barab's "Only a Miracle" puts a modern spin on the classic Christmas story of Mary and Joseph. In this show, the landlord of the inn turns Mary and Joseph away, but a slave girl Sylphinia finds a way to help them. Herod searches for baby Jesus when hearing of his birth and offers a reward to anyone that knows his whereabouts. Sylphinia focuses on protecting the Child, and is in need of a miracle to save them all.
"The characters in this story are willing to sacrifice for the good of someone else," said Gates. "It's a good example of how to treat people."
The show is geared towards families, and children are encouraged to attend the event. The style of opera singing in "Only a Miracle" gives it the feel of a theatrical play that is being performed in song.
"It's a wonderful way to introduce you and your children to opera," said Gates. "It's dramatic, and the excitement of live, acoustic singing is there."
Ron Roy, pianist and musical director has been hard at work preparing for the show with the members of Illumination Opera.
"I can't say enough about him—he's such a singer's pianist. It's a joy to work with him," said Gates.
"Only a Miracle" is directed by Priscilla Stevens, and stars Bill Kruger as the Messenger, Linda Holstein Stronge as Sylphinia, Randy Posey as the Landlord, Joe Rondeau as the Soldier, and Dan Swanson as Herod.
Tickets are available for purchase online at www.mktix.com/ioc , by phone at 978-250-9161, or at the door and are $10 for adults and $5 for students and seniors.