LSM Newswire

Thursday, November 5, 2009

COC and Ben Heppner offer special recital for all COC 60th Anniversary Concert ticket holders

For immediate release: November 5, 2009


Toronto, Ontario The Canadian Opera Company (COC) and celebrated Canadian tenor Ben Heppner are pleased to announce that Mr. Heppner will perform a special solo recital for all ticket holders of the COC’s Diamond Anniversary concert.  Mr. Heppner, who was to have been featured at the concert, was forced to withdraw late last week due to illness.  The recital with piano, to take place on the stage of the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts at a date to be announced soon, will be free for all ticket purchasers of the Saturday, November 7, Diamond Anniversary concert.  Ticket holders will be contacted with full details once the date is announced.

“We know Ben’s appearance was highly anticipated by many people, and we understand they are as disappointed by his cancellation as we are.  We asked him if he could offer our audience a special recital with piano on the Four Seasons Centre stage.  He immediately agreed, and we are eager to have him back with us soon,” says Alexander Neef, General Director.  “I am very pleased that we will be providing our 60th anniversary concert-goers with a program of the highest calibre, as well as a solo recital by Ben later this season.  All this makes our 60th anniversary even more exciting!”

The COC’s 60th Anniversary Concert takes place as planned on Saturday, November 7, 2009 at 7 p.m. at the Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts, with a pre-concert reception beginning at 6 p.m.  Last week, after Mr. Heppner was forced to withdraw from performing at the concert, the COC quickly signed opera stars Ramón Vargas, John Treleaven, and Canada’s own Russell Braun to replace the ailing singer.  The concert also features the COC Orchestra, led by Johannes Debus, making his debut as COC Music Director.

Regulars at all the great opera houses of the world, Ramón Vargas, Russell Braun and John Treleaven perform extensively with the Metropolitan Opera, La Scala, Vienna Staatsoper, Paris Opera, the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Munich Staatsoper, and San Francisco Opera, among many others.  The evening’s concert program has retained most of its original repertoire with Mr. Vargas singing from the romantic French repertoire,
Mr. Treleaven singing the Wagner repertoire and Mr. Braun singing both.

The COC’s 60th Anniversary Celebration on Saturday, November 7, 2009, begins with a pre-concert reception at 6 p.m. in the Isadore and Rosalie Sharp City Room at the Four Seasons Centre, followed by the concert which begins at 7 p.m.  All tickets include a complimentary glass of Trius Brut sparkling wine or Peller Estates Icewine.  

Supporting Sponsors of the COC’s Diamond Anniversary Concert: BMO Financial Group, Diamond and Schmitt Architects

Wine Sponsor: Andrew Peller Limited

Diamond Raffle Sponsor: De Beers Canada

The COC is grateful to Colleen Sexsmith for offering her generous financial support to help make the COC’s Diamond Anniversary concert possible, in part through underwriting Ramón Vargas’s and John Treleavan’s respective performances.

Russell Braun’s appearance is generously underwritten by Earlaine Collins.

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