The public is invited to a delightful evening of arias, animals, and nostalgia, hosted by Evans Mirageas of Cincinnati Opera and Thane Maynard of Cincinnati Zoo. Sponsored by The Marge & Charles J. Schott Foundation.

CINCINNATI — On Thursday, June 6, Cincinnati Opera celebrates its historic roots at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden with the fourth annual Back to the Zoo Concert, presented at the Wings of Wonder Theater. Opera fans, Zoo lovers, and people of all ages are invited for a fun, family-friendly program of opera delights, memories from the Zoo days, and close encounters with animals. The celebration, generously sponsored by The Marge & Charles J. Schott Foundation, will open with an informal reception featuring hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Tickets are free, but reservations are required.  

Hosted by Evans Mirageas, The Harry T. Wilks Artistic Director of Cincinnati Opera, and Cincinnati Zoo Botanical Garden Executive Director Thane Maynard, the concert will commemorate the Opera’s most celebrated memories from the Zoo with some of the best-loved songs of opera and Broadway. Performances by Reilly Nelson, Meghan Tarkington, Tyler Alessi, and José Rubio will be mingled with exciting visits from furry, scaly, and feathered Zoo friends. Songs will include such favorites as Carmen‘s Toreador Song, “O What a Beautiful Mornin'” from Oklahoma, and “Granada.”

On June 27, 1920, Cincinnati Opera presented its first opera, a production of Martha, in an outdoor pavilion at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden. For the next half-century, performances at the Cincinnati Zoo Pavilion filled a 10-week season that regularly featured some of the most legendary singers of the 20th century — Plácido Domingo, Norman Treigle, Beverly Sills, Sherrill Milnes, Montserrat Caballé, James Morris, and Roberta Peters, to name a few.

Cincinnati Opera moved to Music Hall in 1972, but the partnership between the Opera and the Zoo continues to the present day. For more information, please visit Cincinnati Opera and Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden present Back to the Zoo Sponsored by The Marge & Charles J. Schott Foundation

Date: Thursday, June 6, 2013

Time: 6:00 p.m.

Reception with refreshments and cash bar 7:00 p.m.

Concert Location: Wings of Wonder Theater, Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, 3400 Vine Street, Cincinnati, OH 45220 Parking: $5 after 5:00 p.m. Park in the Vine Street Lot and enter the Historic Vine Street Plaza.

Tickets: FREE, but reservations are required. To reserve, call the Cincinnati Opera Box Office at (513) 241-2742.

The Back to the Zoo Concert is sponsored by The Marge & Charles J. Schott Foundation.

Cincinnati Opera’s 2013 Summer Festival will take place June 13 through July 28, featuring Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Richard Strauss’s Der Rosenkavalier, Philip Glass’s Galileo Galilei, and Giuseppe Verdi’s Aida. The season will open with Opera in the Park, a free community concert in Washington Park, on June 9. Cincinnati Opera’s 2013 Season Presenting Sponsor is PNC. The 2013 season is also made possible with support from ArtsWave, Ohio Arts Council, The Louise Dieterle Nippert Musical Arts Fund, and many generous individuals, corporations, and foundations.

Photo credit: Cincinnati Opera