Pocket Opera Is Right on Time With PocketWatch

Paul Kotapish on February 23, 2021
The music of Jacqueline Hairston (center) is featured in Pocket Opera's upcoming mini concert with Phillip Harris and Tammy L. Hall.

The unsinkable Pocket Opera just announced a new season of its popular PocketWatch series three-song mini concerts. Each of the short concerts is built around a theme, and each is streamed on a Sunday at 3 p.m. on  Pocket Opera’s Facebook page and YouTube channel. Each concert is followed by a “live talkback” session with the performing artists.

The first installment is coming right up on Sunday, Feb. 28, with “Songs of Concealment,” featuring baritone Phillip Harris and pianist/music director Tammy L. Hall presenting songs of Jacqueline Hairston. The celebration of Black History Month marks Pocket Opera’s first presentation of the works of a Black female composer.

Marcelle Dronkers as Elizabeth, Robert Vann as Essex in Pocket Opera's Roberto Devereux | Credit: David Allen

“Handel With Care” streams on April 18, with one of Pocket Opera’s favorite sopranos, Marcelle Dronkers. Dronkers has performed various Handel evil sorceresses such as Agrippina, Alcina, and Armida on the Pocket Opera stage to rave reviews. Jefferson Packer is music director and accompanist for this mini concert, and the talkback session pairs Dronkers with Pocket Opera Artistic Director Nicolas Aliaga Garcia.

The final concert of the season features soprano Lindsay Roush and tenor Alex Taite in “Songs of the Night” on June 20. This Summer Solstice program is a mixed bag of various arias and songs of the night. David Drummond will be music director and accompanist for this show.

In addition to the three mini concerts, look for Offenbachenalia! on March 21 at 2:45. This virtual gala and auction in celebration of Pocket Opera Founder and Artistic Director Emeritus Donald Pippin is the company’s most important fundraiser of the year. On tap this time around are Robert Vann, Joseph Meyers, and Michael Mendelsohn as “The Three Offenbach Tenors.” They’ll be performing selections from La Vie Parisienne, Tales of Hoffmann, and La Belle Hélène. The event is free. More information and registration is available at the fundraiser website.

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