Gypsy ghosts and the passionate poetry of Pablo Neruda will come alive this weekend with the Piccolo Spoleto performance of “Viva España.” The all-Spanish program will be presented by Charleston Chamber Opera and will feature Metropolitan Opera tenor Hugo Vera.
Vera makes his third consecutive appearance in Charleston with this production.
“Viva España” showcases a pastiche of music by Spanish composers. Each selection holds its own story and provides a broad palette of different styles.
Selections from El Amor Brujo and La Vida Breve will feature music from one of Spain’s most beloved musicians, Manuel de Falla.
In contrast, snippets are taken from “Il Postino” which premiered in 2010.
The program will close with a rousing rendition of “Granada,” a Mexican standard.
Vera recently performed the role of Neruda in “Il Postino” at Philadelphia’s Center City Opera Theater.
He made his Spoleto debut in 2010 singing Haydn and returned the next year to appear in “The Magic Flute.”
Vera was first introduced to Charleston Chamber Opera last year by friend Christian Elser, the general director of Greenville Light Opera Works.
Vera’s strength in Spanish repertoire and desire to return to Charleston provided the perfect synergy for “Viva España.”
“What I like about Piccolo is the sense of community,” Vera said.
“It brings something really intimate.”
This sentiment arises in the stunning array of Southeastern talent involved in the show. Coloratura soprano Diana Thompson hails from Augusta, Ga., and will make her Charleston debut.
She will be joined by Lara Wilson, mezzo-soprano and executive director of the Charleston Chamber Opera.