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Why We Are Here

Why We Are Here

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March 06th 2015:Passionate and Progressive LA Opera

Opera is among the most complex and powerful forms of music. It has been an emotionally charged source of entertainment for centuries. With that said, “Why We Are Here” is proud to share with our listeners a few of LA Opera’s finest. LA Opera’s Director of Education, Dr. Stacy Brightman joins us along with Composer Eli Villanueva to discuss the workings of the organization and how opera connects with people from all walks of life. Later on in the show we are graced with the presence of a beautifully gifted young Opera Soprano Star, Summer Hassan. Their inspiration, contributions, and healing w

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Featured Guests

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Dr. Stacy Brightman

Dr. Stacy Brightman, Los Angeles Opera’s Director of Education and Community Programs, is directly responsible for the oversight and production of the company’s Education and Community Programs which currently serve 160,000 students and family members annually. She is responsible for developing new programs, supervising in-school and community opera commissions, productions and tours, creating and leading teacher seminars, and partnering with schools, community organizations and volunteer groups.
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Eli Villanueva

Innovator, Eli Villanueva is LA Opera’s Education and Community Engagement Resident Director. The Marriage of Figueroa was written by Eli Villanueva and LeRoy Villanueva especially for LA Opera and is based on Mozart’s The Marriage of Figaro. The Story “The Marriage of Figueroa” takes place in historic Alta (Upper) California at the fictional Mission Aguas Frescas where everyone is preparing for the wedding of Gov. Jose Figueroa. Gov. Figueroa enters and proclaims that he will take their beloved mission and make it his own home and the campesinos are expected to fix it up for him – for free. The campesinos use Mozart’s opera, “The Marriage of Figaro,” to show the Governor the error of
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Summer Hassan

Soprano Summer Hassan recently completed her master's degree at the University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music. Recent engagements include her Carnegie Hall debut as the Second Niece in Britten’s Peter Grimes with the St. Louis Symphony, Norina in Donizetti's Don Pasquale and Anna Maurrant in Weill's Street Scene with CCM opera. She recently covered Vendulka in Smetana's The Kiss at Opera Theatre of Saint Louis. Other roles have included Mimi in La Bohème, the Mother in Hansel and Gretel, and Betty in The Threepenny Opera with Janiec Opera Company at the Brevard Music Center; and Vitellia in La Clemenza di Tito and Dorabella in Così fan tutte with Oberlin Opera Theater. She w
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