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A Love Affair with Opera - About the Amato Opera

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The beauty of the Opera is still alive at the Amato Opera, which has been staging grand performances for over fifty years. Each season, it provides the community with productions of operatic classics like "Carmen," "Aida," and "The Magic Flute." What sets Amato Opera apart from other opera companies is its artistic goals of performing grand opera at a reasonable price and creating a platform for aspiring young singers.

The Amato Opera has grown famous as a testing ground for young singers; many of its performers have gone on to sing, direct, and conduct in opera companies around the world. Yet it is not only the singers that capture viewers' attention in this tiny theater. The orchestra is phenomenal. The sets, designed by Richard Cerullo for the past twenty years, are wonderfully designed to make the most of the Amato's small stage. And what the theater lacks in seating capacity it makes up for in intimacy. The audience's connection with the performance is enhanced by its close proximity to the stage and singers.

As in any of the operas Amato stages, there are several main characters responsible for the buzz of action that surrounds the theater company. In the Amato Opera's case, it is Tony Amato and his late wife, Sally. The couple founded the Amato Opera in 1948 with two goals in mind: to perform entertaining opera at a reasonable price; and to give promising singers experience with full-length productions. From artistic director, to conductor, to performing in their own productions, through the years Tony and Sally wore numerous hats to keep the show on the road, or at least in the theater. Today Tony is still running the Opera with as much passion and joy as he did fifty years ago. His love for the Opera is part of the formula responsible for the Amato Opera's longevity.

While the Amato Opera is an expression of its founders' vision, it has also earned much critical acclaim, often described in terms of an excellence that goes well beyond the usual small opera company. Even those who normally steer clear of the opera have been taken in by the Amato Opera's energy and warmth. With such high praise from audiences and critics alike, it is no wonder the Amato Opera continues to thrive and entertain after so many seasons.
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An excerpt from the documentary film AMATO: A LOVE AFFAIR WITH OPERA

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Watch the Amato Opera company perform in this video clip.

Video courtesy of Christopher Jackson
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