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‘Catalyst Sessions’ recap: Mark Sforzini

Bill DeYoung

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St. Petersburg Opera Company will be among the first, if not the very first, to dip its toe carefully back into the pool of live performance next month.

In a socially-distant manner of speaking.

“Even though we can’t do any live, big opera mainstage shows for the time being, there are other things we can do,” executive and artistic director Mark Sforzini said Thursday on The Catalyst Sessions. “And the outdoors is generally safer than the indoors. So we’re going to go around with a troupe of four singers and a pianist Aug. 9.”

The vocalists and accompanist will perform from the back of a flatbed trailer, at Westminster Palms, the St. Pete Side Lot, the Museum of Fine Arts (between the enormous banyan trees on the north lawn) and the Palladium Theater parking lot.

When one performance is finished, the troupe and the truck will move along to the next. The schedule is here (it all happens between 5 and 8:30 p.m., for maximum coolness).

“I think people are starved for some live entertainment,” Sforzini said. “So I think this is a great option; you can get some live entertainment, it’s not too long. Not too short but not too long. I think 30 minutes is a good length for a pop-up performance.”

Sforzini also discussed SPO’s additional plans, the majority of them virtual, for its 15th season (which, technically, begins Saturday).

Mostly, he’s excited about the POPera series – it’s scheduled to take place monthly through the end of 2020. “I’m thinking of it like Pagliacci; that was a traveling troupe that went around and performed,” he said, adding an unintentionally prophetic tag: “But in this version, nobody’s going to die at the end.”

Today on The Catalyst Sessions: Author Lori Roy.

Streaming weekdays at 7 p.m. on the Catalyst Facebook page. All episodes are archived on our YouTube channel.

 

 

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