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SMC 75th Anniversary Concert Is Sat., Sun.: will showcase alumni

The Santa Monica College Opera Theatre will spotlight four of its most talented alumni in a special SMC 75th Anniversary program featuring highlights from Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” and Stravinsky’s “The Rake’s Progress.”

The special concert is part of SMC’s yearlong celebration of its 75th anniversary with its special emphasis on alumni. SMC Opera Theatre alumni have gone on to such institutions as the Boston Conservatory of Music, San Francisco Conservatory of Music, USC and University of California and Cal State campuses.

To be featured in selections from “Rake’s Progress” are soprano Linda Jackson, who recently graduated from UCLA; Verdi baritone Adam Edward Meza, who is currently studying at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music; soprano Terrie Barna, a professional actor and singer in Los Angeles; and lyric tenor Gabriel Silva, who is about to receive his master’s in music from USC and who sang six concerts in Europe last summer with the International Vocal Institute.

“These four alumni are amazing talents who are truly on the brink of international opera careers,” said Sue Ann Pinner, artistic director of the Santa Monica College Opera Theatre.

Current students in the Opera Theatre will present selections from “Don Giovanni.” Piano accompanists are Hung-Gi Cindy Hsu and Galina Barskaya.

Pinner is an SMC voice professor, professional opera singer and recording artist whose CD “Adoremus” won the 2004 Sacramental Album of the Year at the United Catholic Musicians and Video Association’s Unity Awards.

Pinner has had leading roles in such operas as the Los Angeles Opera Company’s production of “Madame Butterfly” in The Philippines, and in “La Traviata,” “The Merry Widow” and “The Marriage of Figaro.”The program will be presented at 8 p.m. Saturday, May 14 and 4 p.m. Sunday, May 15 in the SMC Concert Hall, 1900 Pico Boulevard. Each concert will be preceded by a lecture by SMC music professor Donald Richardson comparing the two operas one hour before curtain. Tickets are $16, which includes the lecture. Call (310) 434-3000.

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