July 29-Aug. 17: Full festival details. Acclaimed bass-baritone and Glimmerglass artistic adviser Eric Owens has a high profile, performing the enlarged role of Sarastro in what is described as a “storytelling” version of The Magic Flute (July 29 and Aug. 2, 7, 12, 15, and 17). The Glimmerglass Opera in Cooperstown, N.Y., normally performs in an acoustically accommodating 915-seat theater, but it is moving all of its productions to an outdoor stage because of pandemic concerns.
The Magic Flute is one of several 90-minute “re-imagined” performances of opera and musical theater. Owens is also one of three singers in a program called Gods and Mortals (Aug. 3-16), which features selections from Richard Wagner’s famous and not-so-famous operas. The presentation is directed by the festival’s artistic director and general director, Francesca Zambello.
Other highlights: July 30-Aug. 13, Songbird, a new adaptation of Offenbach’s La Périchole by co-stage director Eric Sean Fogel, conductor James Lowe, and translator Kelly Rourke; Aug. 1-14, Verdi’s Il trovatore; and Aug. 5-13, The Passion of Mary Cardwell Dawson (world premiere), with mezzo-soprano Denyce Graves in the title role. The new play by Sandra Seaton with music by Carlos Simon celebrates the founding of the groundbreaking National Negro Opera Company in 1941.