It is not every day that an artist of the caliber of Elizabeth Caballero offers an intimate and interactive concert to Fort Lauderdale Opera Lovers, and if that weren’t enough, on the day an Opera Legend like Virginia Zeani turns 90!
Cuban/American opera star, Elizabeth Caballero has made a name for herself in the international Opera Scene, and returns home to South Florida to VAS first Up Close and Personal at NSU Art Museum Fort Lauderdale, in time to celebrate the 90th birthday of legendary opera Prima Donna, Virginia Zeani. The Art Salon Concert is taking place Thursday, October 22, 2015, and as usual, the evening will begin with an elegant wine and hors d’oeuvres social in the Breezeway of the Museum at 7:00 pm followed by the Salon Concert in the Horvitz Auditorium at 8:00 pm. Afterwards, guests will have the opportunity to meet Ms. Caballero and Mme. Zeani … up close and personal in the main lobby of Museum of Art and join us in a champagne toast to the brilliant artistry and career of La Zeani!
“This will be the first time that I will be performing in South Florida since May 2014!,” Ms. Caballero said. “Lots of my Miami and Cuban/American friends and fans keep asking me when I will perform there again. So, to be honored to sing at this 90th birthday celebration with Ms. Zeani in the audience is a dream come true for me.” Born in Havana, Cuba, Ms. Caballero immigrated to the United States via the Mariel Boatlift and grew up in Miami. She studied piano as a child and later studied voice at Miami-Dade Community College and earned a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance. She participated in the Young Artist Program of Florida Grand Opera and was an Adler Fellow at the San Francisco Opera. Ms. Caballero played to an enthusiastic standing-room-only audience at Carnegie Hall on June 14th.
Elizabeth Caballero’s will be accompanied by soprano Betsy Diaz, who recently completed her second year as a Florida Grand Opera Young Artist, and has performed with the Symphony of the Americas, the Miami Symphony Orchestra, the Concert Association of Florida, and has appeared as a guest artist with the Mainly Mozart Festival in Miami and the Miami International Piano Festival, and was also a Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Pianist Sergio Puig, also born in Cuba and raised in Miami, will be playing and making the performance complete.
Virginia Zeani, born in 1925 in Solvastru, Romania, became one of Italy’s most celebrated and appreciated artists during the 1950s and a contemporary of such artists as Maria Callas and Joan Sutherland. Mme. Zeani is legendary for performing the role of Violetta in Verdi’s La Traviata a record 648 times and the major roles in 69 operas in 9 languages in her 35 year performing career.
Making her debut in Bologna, Italy in 1948 at 22 years old, Mme. Zeani went on to become one of the greatest international opera singers of the 20th century. After an incredibly arduous 35 year performing career, she came to the United States and became known as one of the foremost voice teachers in the world at Indiana University School of Music. She sang 71 roles, from Traviata and Gilda, Lucia …etc to Aida and Tosca. Today, Virginia Zeani, continues a busy life teaching the bel canto technique at her home in West Palm Beach, Florida to young singers from all over the world. At the same time, her voice remains in marvelous condition and she has even retained a brilliant top E flat!
I want to take this opportunity to express our gratitude to Better Homes and Garden Florida 1st, the Title Sponsors of this event, as well as Cathy and Gene Whiddon. We are beyond excited to be teaming up with such a prestigious Broward based company. Venetian Arts Society is centered on the principle of our ‘intimate and interactive art presentations,’ and we consciously search out sponsors who are the finest businesses of our community to enhance our desire to present only the best of the best of the cultural arts. Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate Florida 1st is a large-scale, state-of-the-art, 21st century company that Gene and Cathy Whiddon make sure keeps that personal ’boutique-style’ feel. Please allow me to stress how refreshing and inspiring to find such world class businesses who make it possible for VAS to present our one-of-a-kind programming that is designed to make Fort Lauderdale a cultural destination. Please…support those who support the Body and Soul of our community!”
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