Lyric Opera of Chicago

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Audiences are crazy for CAROUSEL

You've read the great reviews. You've seen our fabulous stars on TV. Now hear directly from Carousel  fans just like you why this amazing new production is the theater event of the season. Don't delay and see this show before it closes on May 3.

You've read the great reviews. You've seen our fabulous stars on TV. Now hear directly from Carousel  fans just like you why this amazing new production is the theater event of the season. Don't delay - the show must close May 3!

 

And if that's not enough, here's just a sampling of some of the social media chatter. Carousel is lighting up the Twitterverse and beyond, especially from some die-hard fans that want to see this great production come to Broadway. Plus, don't forget to check out our online collection of Stage Door Selfies, a look at our fabulous stars posing with some of their biggest fans after each performance. 

 

 

 

Photo Credits:

  • Carousel at Lyric Opera of Chicago photos credit Todd Rosenberg

 

CAROUSEL by the numbers

Lyric's production of Carousel  is one of the grandest spectacles ever to be seen at the Civic Opera House. Here are just a few of the numbers that make all of the onstage splendor possible. Don't miss your opportunity to see a program that the Chicago Tribune's Chris Jones gave a perfect four stars and says "has the smell of Broadway!" Catch this ride before it leaves Chicago on May 3.

Lyric's production of Carousel  is one of the grandest spectacles ever to be seen at the Civic Opera House. Here are just a few of the numbers that make all of the onstage splendor possible. Don't miss your opportunity to see a program that the Chicago Tribune's Chris Jones gave a perfect four stars and says "has the smell of Broadway!" Catch this ride before it leaves Chicago on May 3.

890

Lights in the working carousel that was built especially for this production

600

Fiber optic stars. Both the carousel lights and the stars give this production an otherworldly feel. Celebrated Italian visual artist Paolo Ventura is making his theatrical design debut with Carousel

300

Fake "puff-puff" cigarettes will be used during the entire course of the run. You're most likely to find them in the hands of Billy Bigelow, Mrs. Mullin, and that ne'er-do-well Jigger Craigin!

220

Total costumes in the show, all designed by Tony Award-winner Catherine Zuber. Lyric's wardrobe department has been busy! (To compare, The Sound of Music last season had 130 costumes.)

160

Pairs of shoes. All of those dancers need to hoof in style, fitted with special non-skid soles from Brooks Shoe Repair.

83

Wigs in the show. It takes 40 to 60 hours to create each new wig. Laura Osnes, Jenn Gambatese, Denyce Graves, and Charlotte d'Amboise account for 8 of the wigs—they got two each! And it takes 12 members of Lyric's hair and makeup staff to get everyone ready for each show. 

60

Ensemble members, which may be a Lyric record! This huge cast of singing actors and dancers includes 14 members of the Lyric Opera Chorus. 

37

Musicians in the orchestra, all members (or subs) of the Lyric Opera Orchestra, under the baton of celebrated conductor David Chase.

11

Carousel horses. Five are used on the actual carousel and the other six are in the "dream ballet" sequence, choreographed by the amazing Rob Ashford.

3

Characters in clown makeup.

2

Incredible love stories. Billy Bigelow and Julie Jordan are two tornadoes of passion that collide. Carrie Pipperidge and Enoch Snow have a more practical approach, but are no less in love. 

1

Can't-miss experience. Carousel is on stage through May 3!!

 

Photo credits:

  • Carousel production photos credit Robert Kusel and Todd Rosenberg / Lyric Opera of Chicago
  • Carousel behind-the-scenes photos credit Todd Rosenberg / Lyric Opera of Chicago
  • Carousel costume sketches credit Catherine Zuber

 

 

CAROUSEL is the talk of Chicago!

If the rave reviews weren't enough, the acclaimed cast and creative team of Carousel are making their way around Chicago, whether it's on TV or at a Cubs game. Don't miss your chance to see this amazing production. This Carousel must move on May 3!

If the rave reviews weren't enough, the acclaimed cast and creative team of Carousel are making their way around Chicago, whether it's on TV or at a Cubs game. Don't miss your chance to see this amazing production. This Carousel must move on May 3!

The entire cast and director/choreographer Rob Ashford were interviewed on WCIU's "You and Me This Morning" about starting the rehearsal process:

;

Jenn Gambatese, who plays the irrepressible Carrie Pipperidge, performed “Mr. Snow” on ABC 7’s  Windy City Live and gave away some tickets to lucky audience members:

ABC 7's Janet Davies interviewed the incomparable Charlotte d'Amboise and Tony Roberts about their illustrious careers and current roles in Carousel:

Mr. and Mrs. Snow—Jenn Gambatese and Matthew Hydzik—went on  WTTW's Chicago Tonight  to talk with host Phil Ponce about the show and performed "When the Children Are Asleep."

 

Matthew also performed another one of Enoch's signature songs, "In a Manner of Speaking," his ode to his plans for a big sardine factory…and a big family:

 

Jarrod Emick, who plays everyone's favorite bad boy Jigger Craigin, sang the National Anthem at the April 14 Cubs game. 

 

Denyce Graves and Matthew Hydzik visited WGN Radio's Andrea Darlas for an in-depth conversation about preparing for Carousel. Tony Roberts also stopped by WGN Radio to talk with Bob Sirott and Marianne Murciano.

Michigan Ave magazine interviewed and photographed the cast of Carousel.

CS magazine interviewed Steven Pasquale about his dream role of Billy Bigelow. 

The Chicago Tribune's Chris Jones interviewed director Rob Ashford about the show and speculated on whether it is Broadway bound. Carousel stars Steven Pasquale and Laura Osnes also recorded a special version of "The Bench Scene" for the Tribune's Theater Loop Showcase video series

Hedy Weiss of the Chicago Sun-Times talked with Ashford and stars Steven Pasquale and Laura Osnes.

Tony Roberts also reflected on his career and talked about his upcoming memoir in this profile in the Chicago Sun-Times.

Photo credits:
  • Steven Pasquale in CS magazine
  • Jarrod Emick performs at Wrigley Field
  • Laura Osnes, Jenn Gambatese, and Steven Pasquale in Michigan Ave
  • Jenn Gambatese and Matthew Hydzik on Chicago Tonight
 

Ryan Opera Center Spotlight: J’nai Bridges

Learn all about third-year Ryan Opera Center member J'nai Bridges in this artist spotlight. This talented young mezzo-soprano speaks Japanese and will be representing the United States in the upcoming BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition. She is currently on stage in The Passenger through March 15.

Ryan Opera Center member J'nai Bridges is an exciting young singer who can currently be seen on stage in Weinberg's The Passenger  as Vlasta. You might also recognize her from previous appearances at Lyric in productions ranging from Il Trovatore, The Magic Victrola, The Family Barber, La Traviata, Parsifal, The Second City Guide to the Opera, and more!


J'nai Bridges in The Family Barber and The Second City Guide to the Opera
(top L-R); La Traviata and The Magic Victrola (bottom L-R)

In addition to her hard work on stage at Lyric, she was just named as one of 20 international finalists for the prestigious BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition in June.

Catch J'nai in The Passenger  through March 15 and at Rising Stars in Concert on March 21, which marks her official "graduation" from the Ryan Opera Center. (Donate $75 or more today to secure your place at this exciting performance.) She'll also make a welcome return to Chicago in the 2015-16 season when she portrays Carmen in the world-premiere performances of Jimmy López's Bel Canto, which opens on December 7. 

Name J'nai Bridges
Age  28
Voice Mezzo-soprano
Year in ROC 3rd Year
Hometown Lakewood, Washington
Dream Role Charlotte in Werther

When did you start singing? When did you know you wanted to be a singer?

I started singing classically when I was 17, my senior year in high school. I knew I wanted to be an opera singer after my freshman year at Manhattan School of Music. 

Did you ever consider a career other than singing? And if you had to imagine an alternative career now, what would it be?

Yes, I considered studying psychology. I find the mind really fascinating. 

What was the most memorable performance you've been in at this point in your career?

I have a couple of most memorable moments. The first is performing Act IV from Carmen at Stars of Lyric Opera in Millennium Park in 2012 and the second is making my Chicago Symphony Orchestra debut under the baton of Matthew Aucoin.

 
J'nai Bridges and Brandon Jovanovich perform in Carmen at Stars of Lyric Opera in Millennium Park

What is something most people don't know about you?

I speak Japanese.

When you're not performing or rehearsing, where are we likely to find you?

At home or in some sort of spa relaxing

Learn more about J'nai and Cardiff Singer of the World in this Lyric Spotlight video:

J'nai Bridges interviewed by WFMT before a performance of The Passenger:

 

Photo credits:

  • J'nai Bridges portrait credit Devon Cass
  • Lyric Opera of Chicago production photos credit Todd Rosenberg (Family Barber, La Traviata, and The Magic Victrola); Dan Rest (The Second City Guide to the Opera); and Robert Kusel (Stars of Lyric Opera at Millennium Park, 2012)

 

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