Opera Theatre of Weston gets grant for children’s Irene project

Opera Theatre of Weston has been awarded a $2,000 grant from the Vermont Humanities Council to help support the cost of The Storybook Opera: Tropical Storm Irene Project .

Ashley Hensel-Browning teaches students at Rutland Town Elementary School during a Storybook Opera visit./Photo contributed.

Storybook Opera is a pre-performance educational project designed to enrich the lessons offered in the opera  Noye’s Fludde (Noah’s Flood) by Benjamin Britten, which the Opera Theatre of Weston will be performing in January 2013 at the Paramount  Theatre in Rutland and the Weston Playhouse.  As the children learn about the opera, they will create their own narrative arc, sharing their stories about Vermont’s flood in August of last year.

With the cooperation of teachers and other professionals in the area, OTW choreographer Ashley Hensel-Browning of Chester will help the students transform their writings into creative movement, enhancing their appreciation of Noye’s journey, as well as charting their own.  As the children explore this foundational story, they will gain a deeper understanding of their personal experiences relating to Tropical Storm Irene.

Opera Theatre of Weston brings opera to children and children to opera.  Thirty local youngsters have been cast in the parts of Noye’s sons and their wives, plus 12 pairs of animals. More than 2,700 school children will attend the performances.  Opera Theatre of Weston, a professional company member of OPERA America, is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.   For more information, click here or phone 802-824-3821.


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