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Welcome to New Jersey Opera Theater at UCPAC

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NEW JERSEY’S NEWEST OPERA COMPANY AND RAHWAY’S OWN

Industry-Leading Opera Company

At New Jersey Opera Theater, we believe in providing the community with a series of state-of-the-art shows and world class performances that truly make an impact. Our Inaugural 2023-24 Season will be a wide range of German, Italian Bel Canto, and American opera with an outstanding group of performers that really bring each of our productions to life. 


New Jersey Opera Theater will be the cornerstone for ensuring the legacy of this great art form. Throughout our season, we hope to mentor local high school and college students by having them join our professional musicians in the orchestra, chorus, or understudy a lead role working along side industry professionals. We will make all performances accessible to students either through special ticketing promotions or outreach performances for schools. Whitney Houston sang it best, “I believe that children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way.” Let THEM lead the way. THEY are our future and New Jersey Opera Theater will plant the seeds. 


Our goal is to also bring world class performances to this community for you and your families. We are proud to announce our 2023-24 season. This December we will be performing Gian Carlo Menotti’s Christmas miracle opera, Amahl and the Night Visitors. In January and February we will preview our summer opera festival. In January we will perform Act 1 of Wagner’s Die Walküre staged with piano, and in February we will perform Act 1 of Bellini’s Norma in concert. We will have an Opera Gala in April, and the main Opera Festival will be our full production of Norma in June and Die Walküre in July. All performances will be at The Union County Performing Arts Center’s Historic Main Stage Theater.


It takes village to bring all of this into fruition, and it starts with you. Thank YOU for filling these seats. Thank YOU for being here to support New Jersey Opera Theater. We will graciously continue to need your stewardship and generosity. Donations are always welcomed and vital to support our world class talent and production team. If anyone would like to make a tax deductible donation or inquire about patronage, please email newjerseyopera@yahoo.com, or visit our donation page at https://ucpac.org/new-jersey-opera-theater/


Come see what we’re all about, and start your opera theater experience with us today!


- Joseph Mayon, Founder & Artistic Director 

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Projects and Productions

20023-24 SEASON

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Night of Opera by Richard Wagner

September 30th, 2023 @ UCPAC 7:00

Our Inaugural performance will be a tour of Richard Wagner operas including arias from Die Walküre, Götterdämmerung, Tannhäuser, Parsifal, Die Meistersinger, Lohengrin, and Siegfried.

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Amahl and the Night Visitors

December 15th 2023

Amahl and the Night Visitors is an opera in one act by Gian Carlo Menotti with an original English libretto by the composer.

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Die Walküre Act 1

February 11th, 2024

Die Walküre, WWV 86B, is the second of the four music dramas that constitute Richard Wagner's Der Ring des Nibelungen. It was performed, as a single opera, at the National Theatre Munich on 26 June 1870, and received its first performance as part of the Ring cycle at the Bayreuth Festspielhaus on 14 August 1876.

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Norma Act 1

February 24th 2024

Norma is a tragedia lirica or opera in two acts by Vincenzo Bellini with libretto by Felice Romani after the play Norma, ou L'infanticide by Alexandre Soumet. It was first produced at La Scala in Milan on 26 December 1831.

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Opera Gems: An evening of Opera’s Most treasured Masterpieces

ONE NIGHT ONLY September 21st, 2024 @ 7:00pm

NJ Opera Theater’s Opera Gems concert will be a treasure chest filled with soaring arias, duets, and ensembles by your favorite composers. Selections will include La Donna è Mobile from Rigoletto, The Queen of the Night’s aria from The Magic FluteVissi d’arte from Tosca, The Ride of the Valkyries, and much more. New Jersey Opera Theater’s cast includes artists from The Metropolitan Opera. We are rolling out the red carpet for you, so please dash the paparazzi in your finest evening attire! Private Meet & Greet VIP cocktail reception with the cast is available after the show.

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Norma by Bellini

June 30th, 2024 @ 4:00pm TICKETS AVAILABLE SOON 

COSPLAY INVITATION: Please feel free to come dressed in your favorite Druid or Roman attire!!!!
NORMA, by Bellini, is a poignant tale set as a mesmerizing opera that delves into the complexities of love and infidelity. The heart of the story lies in the tangled web of love and betrayal involving Norma, the high priestess, her wayward lover Pollione, and the innocent novice priestess, Adalgisa. Step into the magic of this opera, and be prepared to be swept away by the haunting melodies and emotional crescendos that bring this timeless tale to life. Join us on a journey where the human spirit grapples with the complexities of love, and where every note resonates with the universal themes that bind us all. Don't miss this unforgettable night of drama and music that transcends time and speaks to the soul. Staring Maryann Kyle (Norma), Ann Viemeister (Adalgisa), Joseph Mayon (Pollione), Steven Fredericks (Oroveso), Jax Hassler (Flavio), Anita Lyons (Clotilde), conducted by Richard Nechamkin, and Stage Direction by Dennis Oliveira.

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Die Walküre by Wagner 

July 27th, 2024 @ 5:00pm TICKETS AVAILABLE SOON 

COSPLAY INVITATION:
Our production will take place during the 1920’s to pay tribute to the history of Union County Performing Arts Center’s Main Stage Theater, which was built in 1928. To keep the 1920’s atmosphere, we will also be using the theater’s original Mighty Wurlitzer Theater Organ with our New Jersey Opera Theater Orchestra. So please come dressed in your favorite 1920’s, Great Gatsby, Boardwalk Empire attire! We will have a 1920’s Jazz Band playing during the two intermissions with cocktails and appetizers. Come celebrate our incredible evening of Wagner and Jazz!

Siegmund: Joseph Mayon, Sieglinde: Elisabeth Shoup, Hunding: Steven Fredericks, Wotan: Charles Schneider, Brünnhilde: Elizabeth Perryman, Fricka: Lorraine Helvick, Gerhilde: Tara Jamshidian, Ortlinde: Analía Corpas, Helmwige: Roseanne Ackerley, Waltraute: Ann Viemeister, Siegrune: Mary Hochgesang, Grimgerde: Chantelle Grant, Roßweise: Julianne Froehlich, Schwertleite: Brittany Walker, Stage Direction by Dennis Oliveira, and Conducted by Hugh Keelan.



Before there was The Lord of the Rings, there was The Ring Cycle, a series of four operas by Richard Wagner, based loosely on Norse mythology.

The story revolves around a magic ring that grants the power to rule the world, forged by the dwarf Alberich from the gold he stole from mermaids in the River Rhine. Crushed by his loss, Alberich lays a curse on the ring: until it returns to him, it will inspire restless jealousy in those who won it and murderous envy in those who don't, thus condemning all the possessors of the ring.

Several mythic figures struggle for possession of the ring, including Wotan (Odin), the chief of the gods. Wotan’s scheme spanning generations, to overcome his limitations, drives much of the action of the story. DIE WALKÜRE is where all of Wotan’s earthly and celestial children get caught up in his mess from the curse of the ring. During DIE WALKÜRE Act 1, we get to meet Wotan’s earthly love children and learn of their cursed past. Yes, Wotan had an affair with a mortal woman, which really upset his Goddess wife, Fricka, which we hear about in Act 2. Wotan’s other daughter, Brünnhilde, is forced by her father to do something to make Fricka happy, but she disobeys her father and stepmother. (BACKSTORY: Yes, Brünnhilde and her 8 sisters are the love children of Erde, not Fricka. Oh that Wotan!!!! So do you see where this family dynamic is going?!!!) Because of Brünnhilde’s betrayal, all hell breaks loose, which brings us to The Ride of the Valkyries in Act 3. To find out how Alberich’s curse has destroyed this celestial family, please come to the show!

Did you know? Wagner wrote both the libretto and the music over the course of approximately 26 years, from 1848-1874, and although the individual operas (DAS RHEINGOLD, DIE WALKÜRE, SIEGFRIED AND GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG) are performed as standalone shows, Wagner wanted them to be performed as a series.


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"An opera begins long before the curain goes up and ends long after it has come down. It starts in my imagination, it becomes my life, and it stays part of my life long after I've left the opera house."

Maria Callas

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