The Santa Barbara Symphony continues its 65th Anniversary season with two nights of Giuseppe Verdi’s masterpiece Messa da Requiem, 8 p.m. Saturday, April 13, and 3 p.m. Sunday, April 14, at The Granada Theatre.
Both performances feature Maestro Nir Kabaretti conducting, alongside soloists Colleen Daly, Natascha Petrinsky, Harold Meers and Luca Dall’Amico, plus choruses from across Santa Barbara County, joining forces to bring the performance to life.
To honor Verdi’s intent for his requiem, the Santa Barbara Symphony invites the community to participate in a memorial campaign to honor those loved and lost.
The Messa da Requiem has been described as Verdi’s only masterpiece not intended for the stage. When the famed 19th-century Italian composer wrote his requiem, it was a significant departure from the operas for which he was known at the time.
He composed it in memory of his friend, the celebrated writer, hero and patriot Alessandro Manzoni, when he died in 1873. All of Italy mourned the loss of Manzoni, including Verdi.
Struck with grief, Verdi was unable to attend the funeral, and the Requiem debuted on the first anniversary of Manzoni’s death in the San Marco Basilica in Milan.
“The Santa Barbara Symphony hopes to make this performance of Verdi’s Requiem as meaningful as possible by capturing the spirit of the composer’s intent and honoring the memories of those loved and lost,” said Kevin Marvin, executive director of the Santa Barbara Symphony.
“The symphony will recognize the memorial at the start of our performance, and will end with a moment of silence,” he said.
Soprano soloist Daly is a native of Washington, D.C., where she regularly performs at embassies and political events. Some of her recent performances include Musetta in La Bohème with Annapolis Opera, Lyric Opera of Baltimore and Des Moines Metro Opera, as well as Micaëla, one of her signature roles, in both La Tragédie de Carmen with the Syracuse Opera and in Carmen with the Baltimore Concert Opera.
Born in Vienna, mezzo-soprano Petrinsky began her career at the New Israeli Opera Tel-Aviv. Petrinsky’s work has taken her to such famed opera houses as La Scala, Covent Garden, Teatro Real Madrid, Sydney Opera, New National Theater Tokyo, and Opera Hong Kong.
Tenor soloist Meers debuted with the Opera Theater of Saint Louis and has since traveled across the country to opera houses such as the Metropolitan Opera and San Francisco Opera, making a name for himself as one the outstanding American tenors performing today.
The fourth soloist featured is Italian bass Dall’Amico. Dall’Amico has worked in multiple roles with acclaimed conductor Riccardo Muti and has performed at famed Italian opera houses and festivals such as Milan La Scala Theater, Pesaro Rossini Opera Festival, and Teatro dell’Opera in Rome.
Adding to the large-scale characterization of Verdi’s Messa da Requiem is his use of a large chorus. This dynamic performance will be accompanied by a variety of local choruses including the Santa Barbara Choral Society, Santa Barbara City College Choirs and North County Chorus.
Community members are asked to consider memorializing those individuals loved and lost, while supporting the Santa Barbara Symphony by donating for each individual memorialized, starting at $100. To make a memorial gift, call 805-898-9386 or visit thesymphony.org.
Gifts must be received by March 22 to be included in the Verdi Performance Program.
Special acknowledgment for the performance goes to Principal Concert Sponsors Roger and Sarah Chrisman, and Brooks and Kate Firestone.
Note that there will be no intermission during the performances.
For tickets, call the Granada Box Office, 805-899-2222. For more about the Santa Barbara Symphony and how to support it, visit www.thesymphony.org/.
— Jennifer Zacharias for The Santa Barbara Symphony.