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Puccini Combined With "The Shining": Marble City Opera Presents "The Copper Queen"

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Melony Dodson talks with Librettist/Stage Director, John de los Santos, and Executive and Artistic Director of MCO, Kathryn Frady.

When Clint Borzoni and John de los Santos decided to enter the Arizona SPARK Competition, they chose the story of Julia Lowell as their subject. Julia, a courtesan who lived and worked at the Copper Queen hotel in the early 1900's, hanged herself after an unrequited love affair with one of her customers. According to legend (and documented encounters), Julia haunts Room 315 of the actual hotel in Bisbee, Arizona. But The Copper Queen is more than just a ghost story or a tragic tale where yet another female lead dies in the end. It is a story about redemption, resilience, and the fight of one woman to overcome her traumatic experiences.

Marble City Opera presents the staged premiere of The Copper Queen, June 2-4, 7:30pm at Flying Anvil Theatre (located at 1300 Rocky Hill Rd. in Knoxville). A pre-show discussion will begin at 6:45pm, where the librettist and stage director, John de los Santos, will share stories from his experiences in the actual Copper Queen hotel while writing the opera. Wine and cheese will be served. Tickets and additional information can be found at https://www.marblecityopera.com/thecopperqueen

Melony calls the beautiful mountains of Boone, N.C., home, although she was born near Greensboro, N.C. There’s just something about those Blue Ridge Mountains that got in her blood and never left after she moved there to attend Appalachian State University (ASU). While at ASU, she majored in piano performance and music therapy and began to cultivate a love for accompanying and for collaborating with other musicians. This soon led her to earn a master’s degree in collaborative piano at the University of Tennessee, which she attended from 2006-2008.
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  • WUOT's afternoon classical music program airs from 1-4 p.m. each weekday. Classics for Kids airs Mondays at 3 p.m. (rpt. of previous Saturday's show)NOTE: Playlists are not posted during fund drive weeks in the fall and spring.