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Opera Concert Coming to Marlborough Public Library

Italian Serenades and a selection of contemporary favorites will be presented on April 9.

Melissa Woolverton. Courtesy
Melissa Woolverton. Courtesy

The Friends of the Marlborough Public Library and the Paternoster Memorial Opera Trust will present “Primavera Opera Classics” featuring Familiar Opera Arias with Italian Serenades and a selection of contemporary favorites on Wednesday, April 9, at 7 p.m. in the Bigelow Auditorium, Marlborough Public Library, 35 West Main St., Marlborough. This concert will star Molly Jo Rivelli, soprano and Giovanni Formisano, tenor with Melissa Woolverton, pianist. The concert is opened to the public and there is no admission charge. The auditorium is fully handicapped accessible.

C. John Minnucci, Chair, Paternoster Trust states that this concert will be one of the best concerts in the forty-four years of musical programs of The Friends.  The three artists bring a wealth of experience that is truly remarkable.  Their level of presentation is nothing short of spectacular.  The arias will include arias from Verdi’s La Traviata, Mascagni's Cavalleria Rusticana,  Puccini’s La Boheme and La Rondine, Leonard Bernstein’s Selections from Westside Story, Paolo Tosti’s Core n'grato  and L'ultima canzone and Victor Herbert’s I Want to Be A Prima Donna .  This is a concert not to be missed.

Soprano Molly Jo Rivelli, has impressed audiences throughout New England with “one, incredible voice and great stage presence.”  Her recent performances include singing with the Fine Arts Chorale and Orchestra as Lucia in excerpts from Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor.   Ms. Rivelli also premiered the role of Constance for Granite State Opera in the world premiere of Oscar, a new opera by composer Thomas Oboe Lee.  Ms. Rivelli has performed frequently with Raylynmor Opera in roles such as Donna Anna in Don Giovanni,  Micaela in Carmen and as Violetta in La Traviata .  Additional roles with Raylynmor Opera include Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro, Rosina in The Barber of Seville, and Adina in L’elisire d’amore.

Singing many times with Boston Lyric Opera, Ms. Rivelli portrayed the role of Bianca in their production of La Rondine. Additional opera roles include Frasquita in Carmen with Granite State Opera, Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance with Opera Providence, Adele in Die Fledermaus with Longwood Opera, and both Sandman and Dew Fairy in Hansel and Gretel with Opera New England. 

Ms. Rivelli’s various concert performances include Handel’s Messiah with the Nashua Symphony, Mozart’s Requiem with the Waltham Philharmonic and the Wellesley Choral Society, both the world premier of Requiem for September 11 by Germani and Handel’s Messiah with the Scituate Choral Arts Society Orchestra, and the Poulenc Gloria with Central Congregational Orchestra. 

n addition to performing, she is the owner of MJ’s Music School in Waltham, MA, where she teaches voice and piano. 

Tenor Giovanni Formisano most recent roles include The Young Gypsy in S. Rachmaninoff’s “Aleko” with Commonwealth lyric theatre, Beppe in Ruggero Leoncavallo’s “Pagliacci” and Camille in F. Lehar's "The Merry Widow" with Opera Providence as well as Rodolfo in G. Puccini's "La Boheme" with Boston Opera Collaborative.  Mr. Formisano's past roles Soloist in "Beethoven 9th Symphony" with Amherst College in Amherst MA, (Nemorino) in G. Donizzetti's  Elisir D'amore with Center City Opera in Philadelphia and Opera del West, (Arturo) in G. Donizzetti's Lucia di Lammermoor with Commonwealth Opera,  (Cavaradossi) in G.Puccini's Tosca with the Lowell House Opera, (Pong) in G.Puccini's Turandot with the Connecticut Grand Opera and Lowell House Opera, (Spoletta) in G.Puccini's Tosca with the Cape Cod Opera and the role of (Ruggero) in G.Puccini's La Rondine with the Longy School of Music.  Mr. Formisano has participated in programs such as, the Key West Symphony program directed by Donna Roll, the New York summer opera scenes directed by Joshua Greene (assistant conductor of the Metropolitan Opera House).

Melissa Woolverton, pianist, (a native Canadian) is a professional classical pianist and lyric soprano. At age three, she began studying classical piano through the Royal Conservatory of Music, Canada and continued her piano and vocal studies at Northern State University in Aberdeen, SD. Currently, Melissa is adjunct faculty as an accompanist for Salve Regina University in Newport, RI, staff accompanist for the University of Rhode Island, accompanist for the Greater Tiverton Community Chorus, and is a professional accompanist/solo pianist/vocalist performing throughout New England. She has been the Music Director and pianist for: the Astors' Beechwood Theatre Company in Newport, RI, Flickers G&S Ensemble in Providence, RI, SRU's production of Two Gentlemen of Verona, SRU's Opera Workshop, and the Newport Children’s Theatre production of The Secret Garden. Most recently, Melissa has performed with: Ben Malensek (of the Metropolitan Opera), Suzanne Vega, Duncan Sheik, Gerry Leonard and Dr. Grant Manhart.

This concert is funded and sponsored in part by the Ezra Cutting Trust, Bank of America-Trustee; a grant from Marlborough Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency; The Friends Memorial Fund established by an anonymous donor of $25,000; The Brigham Family Trust and a Gift from the Cummings Properties in honor of Ginger Ryan.  All donations received at the concert will go to the Paternoster Fund interest of which will be used to purchase opera related materials to add to the library’s opera collection.  For further info call: 508-529-9907 or 413-648-9663, email: cjohnminnucci@verizon.net  or rajohnson736@verizon.net or go to The Friends website: mpl-friends.org  

Submitted by the Paternoster Memorial Opera Trust.

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