Opera Wilmington Announces Tosca Cast

May 17, 2024 | Announcements

Passion. Politics. Power. Opera Wilmington presents Puccini’s sweeping operatic thriller, Tosca, starring Shannon Kessler Dooley as the tempestuous diva, Floria Tosca, Jonathan Kaufman, as her lover Mario Cavaradossi, and Joshua Conyers, as the corrupt and obsessive Police Chief, Baron Scarpia. Tosca faces the ultimate challenge of her career: submit to Scarpia, or watch her beloved be tortured to death. Updated to Rome in the 1940’s, this production features high-voltage drama, with sumptuous singing, scenery, and costumes, all taking place on one turbulent day. Sung in Italian with English supertitles projected.

Artistic director Nancy King has assembled a top-notch cast for July’s production of Tosca! 

Singing the three leading roles are artists who have wowed Opera Wilmington audiences before: 

Soprano Shannon Kessler Dooley, our Floria Tosca, was delightfully deceptive as Rosalinde, the taken-for-granted wife of a ladies’ man in our 2018 production of Strauss’ Die Fledermaus. In 2022, she returned as the winsome Pamina in Mozart’s The Magic Flute. Kessler Dooley is on the voice faculty at Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina.

Jonathan Kaufmann thrilled our 2019 La Bohème audiences with his supple tenor voice as well as his emotive portrayal of Rodolfo in the Puccini classic. This year, he sings the role of the painter Mario Cavaradossi, Tosca’s lover who unwittingly becomes involved in political intrigue.

Baritone Joshua Conyers returns to the Opera Wilmington stage this year as Baron Scarpia, the malevolent chief of police who lusts after Tosca. In addition to performing as Opera Wilmington’s Caterina Jarboro Memorial recitalist in 2020, Conyers won over our 2015 audience with his powerful portrayal of the titular tormented court jester in Verdi’s Rigoletto.

The main cast is rounded out with two returning Opera Wilmington favorites: Cesare Angelotti is sung by bass Carl Samet, who’s livened the stage in many of our productions and concerts. Tenor Melvin Ezzell, memorable from his comic turn in Die Fledermaus, among other roles, is cast as Spoletta.

Content Note: Puccini’s Tosca contains scenes of violence and sexual aggression.

Performance time is approximately two hours and 45 minutes, including two 20-minute intermissions.

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