2014–2015 Family Season
There’s something for everyone at The Dallas Opera — even the youngest fans!
Our newest production is an adaptation of the popular folk tale based on scenes from operas by W.A. Mozart, G. Donizetti, and G. Rossini. Sung in English, this story reinforces a strong anti-bullying message, the importance of kindness and attending school regularly.
Saturday November 1st and Saturday April 11th at the Winspear Opera House 12:30pm — The lobby will open for fun activities 2:00pm — The Billy Goats Gruff (Sung in English)
Brandi Estwick / Agostina Migoni as Lucy
Laura Gastinel / Laura Begley as Ernesto
Christopher Leach / Charles Karanja as Dandini
Christian Teague / Travis Wiley McGuire as Osmin
Nancy Schaeffer Stage Director
Tommy Bourgeois Production Designer
Krista Billings Lighting Designer
Mary Dibbern Music Director and Accompanist
Ryan Lescalleet Touring Production Supervisor
Saule Garcia Education Assistant Pianist
The Story of The Billy Goats Gruff
The Billy Goats Gruff is a one-act opera adapted from a traditional fairy tale, and features music by Mozart, Donizetti, and Rossini.
The story takes place in a forest clearing, along the road between the Billy Goats’ home and school. The road crosses a bridge over a stream, and this bridge is the central focus of all the action.
The story begins as three billy goats named Lucy, Ernesto, and Dandini celebrate on their way home from school. From the other side of the bridge, another billy goat named Osmin watches them sing and play. When they begin a game of hide-and-seek, he declares that he will spoil their game. Hearing his voice, the three billy goats begin to feel afraid, but reassure each other and continue their game. Dandini is the first to count, and Lucy and Ernesto run off to hide.
Meanwhile, Osmin brags about being a bully. When the three friends return, he hides behind a tree. Then they hear Osmin’s voice, asking sarcastically if he can join their game. The three billy goats are afraid and decide to go home, but Osmin declares that he will not allow them to cross the bridge without a fight. He begins calling them names, steals Lucy’s doll, and chases them away. Then he puts up a sign next to the bridge reading “KLOSED,” and leaves.
The three friends return, and Ernesto tells Lucy and Dandini that he recognizes Osmin, warning them about all the mean things a bully might do. They decide to avoid the bridge, taking the long way home, but Lucy refuses to leave her doll, which is still “hiding” in the tree on the other side of the bridge. The three billy goats muster up their courage to cross the bridge and get the doll, and declare that they will teach the bully a lesson. Osmin overhears them and steps onto the bridge, scaring the three friends away.
The three billy goats return again, whispering a plan to tiptoe across the bridge. Meanwhile, Osmin listens from a distance. Ernesto manages to sneak over the bridge to retrieve Lucy’s doll. Osmin pops up to scare him and Ernesto is so startled that he throws the doll up in the air. Osmin catches the doll, plays with it in a mocking way, and declares that he will keep it. He puts the doll in the tree and hides again.
From his hiding place, Osmin warns the three billy goats to go away, threatening the doll. Ernesto and Dandini leave to tell an adult about trouble they have been having with the bully, but Lucy still refuses to go anywhere without her doll. She confronts Osmin, asking him to give her doll back. She steps onto the bridge and approaches Osmin to take back the doll. Osmin threatens her and says she’s “just a girl,” but she does not listen. When Osmin grabs Lucy’s arm, she hits him in self-defense, causing him to fall off the bridge. He comes out of the water on the verge of tears, and Lucy reproaches him, telling him never to mess with a mother. Then she asks Osmin if he is all right. He says he is, and then asks Lucy if she is all right. She says she is all right, but that her doll doesn’t like to be thrown.
When Ernesto and Dandini return, they are surprised to see that Lucy has her doll back. When they ask how she did it, Lucy says that Osmin was nice enough to give it back. She even claims that Osmin has promised to play nicely and consider others’ feelings in the future. When Osmin looks surprised, she whispers to him, asking if he would like her to tell them that a girl pushed him into the swamp. He agrees to this understanding, and all four billy goats become friends, joining in a game of hide-and-seek.
This year’s Family Concerts will present “Mozart & Company,” an original program designed to introduce the young and the young at heart to one of the world’s most well-known composers and his music. This terrific event will be guided by the composer’s mentor and close friend, “Papa Franz Joseph Haydn,” and features wonderful soloists and the superb Dallas Opera Orchestra under the baton of Keith Chambers. Be sure to come early to enjoy family activities in the lobby!
Saturday November 15th and Sunday February 8th at the Winspear Opera House 12:30pm — The lobby will open for fun activities including crafts and costumes 2:00pm — Family Concert (about 1 hour)
Sung in English and set in Texas, this 50-minute version of Donizetti’s The Elixir of Love tells a tale of true love, with the help of a love potion. This opera performance is comedic, fun, magical, and relatable; the perfect opera introduction!
Saturday January 31st and Sunday March 22nd at the Winspear Opera House 12:30pm — The lobby will open for fun activities including crafts and costumes 2:00pm — The Elixir of Love (50 minutes, sung in English)