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Phoenicia Festival of The Voice
August 29, 2020 @ 5:00 pm - 11:00 pm
In what is likely a first in the world of musical performance and certainly a first in the global world of grand opera, this year’s live opera staging, typically the anchoring highlight of its annual summer music Festival, will be a drive-in performance of Puccini’s Tosca. The audience will drive right into parking slots, sound will be provided two ways, audience will relax, and enjoy the show. Both the venue and the technology ensure that audience members stay safe in their cars while musicians and staff “socially distance” themselves onstage or behind it. Tosca is one of the most widely performed operas of all time. Vibrant with passion and politics, it is as dramatic as it is lyrical, with some of Puccini’s most ecstatically rhapsodic music. The cast features Joyce El-Khoury as Tosca, Dimitri Pittas as her lover, Mario Cavaradossi, and bass-baritone Kyle Albertson as Baron Scarpia. Working with our team is Danish producer P. Scenen, who presented a drive-in concert in Denmark in April featuring Danish singer-songwriter Mads Langer. The drive-in performance marks a departure for us, which for a decade has been a three-day, multi-venue, multi-event celebration of the human voice held in the hamlet of Phoenicia in the town of Shandaken, in the northwestern corner of Ulster County. Among the innovations planned for this performance is the use of augmented reality, in which computer-generated perceptual information enhances what the singers and orchestra are expressing—for example, by making audience members feel they really are in Rome, Italy. Location: Tech City, Kingston. Arrivals begin at 5 p.m.