Verdi's Requiem Takes Center Stage at HGO, Finally

Verdi's Requiem
Verdi's Requiem Photo courtesy Houston Grand Opera

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Verdi's Requiem
Photo courtesy Houston Grand Opera
It took the Super Bowl to bring Verdi's Requiem to Houston Grand Opera.

No really, we're not making this up. We got it straight from the mouth of HGO chorus master Richard Bado.

While Giuseppe Verdi's oratorio, written to honor the memory of a friend, is fairly regularly performed all over the world, it hadn't made an appearance with the Houston Grand Opera.

Bado explained that leading up to the big game, HGO’s performance home at the Wortham Center was taken over by Super Bowl personnel. So the opera needed to plan for something that could rehearse anywhere and voila, the 93-minute, one-act oratorio fit the bill.

Coincidentally, it was something that Bado, now in his 24th year as chorus master, has wanted to do for a long time. Four soloists and 120 choristers (HGO’s Aida had only 80) will run a roller coaster of emotions from loss and fear to hope and joy with Artistic and Music Director Patrick Summers conducting.

“The emotional journey the audience will go through is huge,” Bado says. “It’s a theatrical, dramatic event. This will be one of the high points of my career here.”

Performances  are scheduled for February 10-18 at 7:30 p.m. Fridays, Wednesday and Saturday; 2 p.m. Sunday. . Wortham Center, 501 Texas. For information call 713-228-6737 or visit houstongrandopera.org. $15 - $240.
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Margaret Downing is the editor-in-chief who oversees the Houston Press newsroom and its online publication. She frequently writes on a wide range of subjects.
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