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The Florentine Opera at the South Milwaukee PAC

March 7, 2012

For the first time in its seven years of presenting, the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center (SMPAC) will present the moving sounds of opera. The Florentine Opera Studio Artists will perform their acclaimed revue of American operas in their program America’s Songbook on Friday, March 23.

Musical highlights of American opera’s colorful evolution are presented in this delightful showcase. The SMPAC’s acoustically rich and “comfortably intimate house” will come alive with the sounds of George Gershwin, Carlisle Floyd, and Leonard Bernstein. For opera lovers and patrons new to the art form, William Florescu, General Director of the Florentine Opera Company, will emcee the evening offering insight and history around each performance.

The Florentine Opera Studio will perform Friday, March 23, at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $10-$20 and may be purchased through the Box Office at 414-766-5049 or online at

The Florentine Opera Studio provides season-long, comprehensive artist-in-residence employment for talented singers beginning their professional careers, while serving the mainstage, education and outreach goals of the Florentine Opera Company. From autumn 2011 through May 2012, the Florentine Opera Studio allows promising singers experience and training to facilitate their professional growth in the opera art form.

Each season, four singers (soprano, mezzo, tenor, baritone/bass) participate in the Studio Program. As a key component of the experience, these Studio Artists have the opportunity to sing supporting and comprimario roles during the opera season. Additionally, artists perform for education and community outreach initiatives and the Florentine’s in-school touring opera program, serving over 13,000 students in K4-5th grade each school year. Studio Artists also have the opportunity to gain continuing training and career advice through master classes and coachings with visiting artists and master teachers.

The South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center (SMPAC) provides the greater community with a creative, innovative and diverse exploration of the performing arts. Through the many opportunities offered, the SMPAC is bringing art to life on stage and to the lives of the people in the South Shore and surrounding communities. Located on the South Milwaukee 6-12 campus, the SMPAC serves as a creative outlet for the greater community, as well as the students of South Milwaukee.

Along with the nine-show Performing Arts Series, the SMPAC opens its doors to other presenters to bring such acts as Cantare Chorale, Tommy Emmanuel, John Hiatt, Ian Hunter, Joe Lovano and Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. They also provide a home to the School District of South Milwaukee events as well as Grant Park Players, the local community theatre.

The South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center is located inside the South Milwaukee High School at 901 15th Avenue, South Milwaukee, WI between College and Rawson Avenues. It is easily accessible from I-94 and 794. Free parking is located in the northwest parking lot. Patrons should enter door #9. For tickets or directions, call 414-766-5049. For more information about the South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center, visit their website at

This performance is supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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