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Tri Cities Opera Gets Up Close And Personal

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By Faith Jessie.
Melodic octaves filled the Tri Cities Opera center today during a dress rehearsal for the telephone trouble in Tahiti, a double bill opera event.

"These two operas are about American suburban home life in all of its beauty and all of its difficulty," said Conductor, Warren Jones.

"It involves two couples and we see them before the engagement or the attempt at the engagement and then we see them about 10 years in to the marriage," said Carleen Graham, Stage Director.

While many operas attract large audiences, that could be sitting hundreds of feet away in balconies, this production has a twist.

"The action will be out in the middle of the auditorium so that every seat in the place is a wonderfully close up and personal experience with the singers, with their voices with their emotions," said Jones.

"It's not like going and sitting in a formal environment at all, you're going to be sitting very close when you come," said Graham.

But just how close is very close?

"I don't think there is a seat in that room that is more than 20 feet away from the stage," said Tri Cities Opera Community Engagement Manager, John Rozzoni.

This production is keeping the arts local, something that Graham says is important for the community.

"It gives people an opportunity here, to express something or be engaged in the community in a way that you cant do when you go out of town to the city to see a Broadway show," said Graham

"Each time that we have an opportunity to generate art in our community we speak in a whole different way about the nature of the community and the people in the community," said Jones.

Some of which might see this art as a bright light during a dark time.

"When people have a real need and it's not met, they turn to the arts and music and different things to help them get through a time like that. You know, food for the soul,that's what we do," said Rozzoni.

This cast will be feeding those souls as they preform this double bill opera from Feb. 18 - 21.

Those interested in the event can visit tricitiesopera.com for tickets. They will also be holding a preview of the opera with refreshments at the center on Saturday 2/13 at 7 p.m.

The event is free and open to the community.