Arts Council News: Rockford Operetta Party presents Sunsets and Edelweiss March 11, 13

By Annie O’Keefe
Executive Director, Rockford Area Arts Council

Founded in 2005, the objective of Rockford Operetta Party is to provide the Rockford area with the opportunity to attend or participate in light operas of genuine artistic merit.

Thursday, March 11, and Saturday, March 13, the Rockford Operetta Party will present a concert of Edwardian light opera titled “Sunsets and Edelweiss.” This program will feature a reading of “A Welsh Sunset,” by Philip Michael Faraday; selections from “The Mountaineers” and from “Two Merry Monarchs,” which was first presented at the Savoy Theater in London March 10, 1910.

Scott Farrell is the director of the Rockford Operetta Party and has performed with a number of choirs and performing groups in the Rockford area. Those groups include: Sveas Soner, NIU Concert Choir, Rock Valley College Chamber Singers and Concert Choir, the Mendelssohn Chorale, Byron Civic Theatre and RVC Studio Theatre. Steve Lilja serves as a performer in the Maywood Evangelical Free Church orchestra and as performer and guest conductor of the Rockford Christian Fellowship Band.

In addition to being a composer, arranger, trombonist and vocalist, Kelly Beaman is director of music at First Presbyterian Church of Winnebago. Beaman has a bachelor’s of music in composition from Illinois Wesleyan University, a master’s of music from Northern Illinois University, and a master’s of business administration from Rollins College. Performers include Lorie Parker-Weinrich, Erica Reed, Sue Lewis, Vicki Marcum, Giovanni Grimaudo, Kurt Schoening, Kelly Beaman and Michael Carlyle.

Performances will be at First Presbyterian Church of Winnebago, 208 W. Winnebago St., Winnebago, Ill. Show starts at 7:30 p.m. For tickets, please e-mail
The production is affordable for the whole family: adults, $9; seniors and children, $6; previous cast members, $5. Please call or e-mail for tickets or additional information: (815) 639-9753, 9 a.m.-9 p.m., Monday-Friday,,

This group is passionate about making opera appeal to all!

Annie O’Keefe is executive director of the Rockford Area Arts Council.

From the Mar. 10-16, 2010 issue

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