Artful Thursday: Madame Butterfly

The Houston Ebony Opera Guild will present Madame Butterfly next week at Miller Outdoor Theatre, but for folks who want a little something different, there’s Artful Thursday: Madame Butterfly today. The program, which is more casual than a full-on performance, will include a panel discussion by experts, as well as samplings from the show’s leading singers (that’s the fun part). Then there’s mingling, drinks and general schmoozing (that’s the really fun part). Well-known Houston director Kate Pogue will act as moderator for the event, with HEOG artistic director Willie Anthony Waters and stage director Ellen Schlaefer on the panel. Performers include leading soloists Geraldine McMillan (Butterfly), David Brewer (Pinkerton) and Dorceal Duckens (Sharpless). And everyone will stick around for the schmoozing.

Puccini’s Madame Butterfly is one of the music world’s most well-known and well-loved operas. Set in 1900 Japan, the story follows Pinkerton, a U.S. naval officer, and his romance with geisha Butterfly. They marry, and soon Pinkerton returns home, leaving Butterfly, who is pregnant, behind. When he returns to take their child, but not her, back to America, Butterfly is heartbroken. The panel will undoubtedly be interesting, the performances are sure to be wonderful, but the real draw to Artful Thursday is the opportunity to go one-on-one with Pinkerton and ask him why he’s such a jerk.

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