'Marriage of Figaro,' 'Moscow, Cheryomushki' Kick Off UH Moores Center Spring Performances Jan. 24 - 27

–  Love and real estate make a perfect pair at the University of Houston’s Moores Opera Center. To kick off its spring performances, the center delivers Mozart’s romantic classic “The Marriage of Figaro” and Shostakovich’s satirical musical comedy “Moscow, Cheryomushki.”

Both operas will be performed in UH’s Moores Opera House (entrance 16 off Cullen Boulevard). Tickets are $20 and $12 for students and seniors. To reserve seats, call 713-743-3313, or visit the Moores Opera Center’s ticket site for details. Performance times and dates for both operas are as follows:

  • “The Marriage of Figaro” – 7:30 p.m., Jan. 24, 26, 27 (directed by David Ward, conducted by Brett Mitchell, and starring Eric Lindsay as Figaro with Amanda Sauceda and Kyla Knox alternating as Susanna)
  • “Moscow, Cheryomushki” – 7:30 p.m., Jan. 25 and 28; 2 p.m., Jan. 27. (directed by Buck Ross, conducted by Jake Sustaita, and starring Brandon Grimes as Boris with Katrina Van Mannen and Leah Bobbey alternating as Lydochka)

Mozart’s “The Marriage of Figaro” debuted in 1786 and remains a timeless favorite. The story takes place a few years after the events of prequel “The Barber of Seville.” The lovely Rosina has since married the Count Almaviva, but his philandering has soured the union. It’s up to Figaro and his bride-to-be Susanna to restore romance to the marriage without jeopardizing their own.

“Moscow, Cheryomushki” premiered in 1959 and tells the tale of three Russian couples hoping to land a living space in a new high-rise apartment complex in Moscow. Of course, it’s not as easy as simply signing a lease. The prospective tenants find a tangle of red tape and politics…including a politician who hopes to procure a living space for his mistress.

The Moores Opera Center was founded in 1986 by director Buck Ross and produces four productions each season. Among the center’s Houston premieres are Daron Hagen’s “Amelia,” Daniel Catán’s “Il Postino,” Robert Aldridge's “Elmer Gantry,” Ricky Ian Gordon’s “The Grapes of Wrath,” Sergei Prokofiev's “The Love for Three Oranges,” Carl Maria von Weber's “Der Freischütz,” Samuel Barber's “Vanessa,” Jules Massenet's “Chérubin,” Gioachino Rossini's “Il viaggio a Reims,” and Kurt Weill's “The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny.” In 2012, the center earned awards from the National Opera Association (NOA) for productions of “Amelia” and “Der Rosenkavalier.” In 2011, it also received NOA honors for “Il Postino.” Professional recordings include the center's productions of Dominick Argento’s “Casanova's Homecoming” and a DVD release of Robert Nelson’s “A Room With a View.” For more details on the Moores Opera Center, visit http://www.music.uh.edu/opera/