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Syracuse Opera�s 2012-13 season opens with Puccini�s �Tosca�

Syracuse Opera opens its 2012-13 season with Giacomo Puccini’s classic Italian grand opera, “Tosca” at 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 19 and 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 21 in the Crouse-Hinds Theater of the Mulroy Civic Center in downtown Syracuse.

In “Tosca,” honor and justice are bitter enemies in Puccini’s dramatic clash between art and power. A passionate diva wields a vengeful blade to save her lover in one of the most riveting confrontations in all opera. Sung by three of opera’s most prominent artists, Syracuse Opera’s new production of “Tosca” will steel all of the senses. Puccini’s heart wrenching melodies will twist the dagger in a compelling evening of opera not soon to be forgotten.

Starring as Tosca is soprano Veronica Mitina, who is making her Syracuse Opera debut. Tenor Patrick Miller returns to Syracuse Opera singing the role of Tosca’s lover, Cavaradossi, for the first time in his career. Miller made his successful Syracuse Opera debut last spring in “Madama Butterfly” as Lt. B. F. Pinkerton. Mitina has previously sung the title role in “Madama Butterfly” with Nevada Opera, Tatiana in “Eugene Onegin” with Anchorage and Virginia Operas, and “Tosca” with Opera North and the Lyrique-en-Mer Festival in France. Mr. Miller has sung Don Ottavio in “Don Giovanni” with both the Seattle Opera and Boston Baroque, and upcoming appearances include Tamino in “The Magic Flute” with Opera on the James.

When not performing on various opera stages, Mitina and Miller are married in real life and have a daughter Eva, age two.

Also making his Syracuse Opera debut is bass-baritone Kristopher Irmiter as the evil Baron Scarpia. Irmiter has previously performed the role of Scarpia with the Lyric Opera of Chicago and also appeared as Escamillo in “Carmen” with San Francisco Opera and in the title role of “Don Giovanni” with Opera Carolina.

Additional “Tosca” principal cast members include bass Jeffrey Tucker making his Syracuse Opera debut as the Sacristan, and Ithaca bass Marc Webster, who returns to Syracuse Opera as Angelotti. Syracuse Opera Resident Artists, tenor Cristopher Frisco and baritone Jonathon Christopher, are making their Syracuse Opera mainstage debuts as Spoletta and Sciarrone, respectively. Bruce Paulsen makes his Syracuse Opera mainstage solo debut as the Jailer.

The set designer for Syracuse Opera’s new production of “Tosca” is Peter Harrison, lighting and video designer is Barry Steele, costume designer is Patricia Hibbert, and make-up and hair designers are Elsen Associates, Dennis Bergevin and Jeffrey Frank, co-directors.

Sharing the role of the Shepherd Boy (sung offstage at the opening of Act III of “Tosca”) are Syracuse Opera Children’s Chorus members, sopranos Julianna Buchmann (from the Weedsport school district), Samantha Sibert (Fayetteville-Manlius) and Lydia Kelly (cover/understudy – Manlius Pebble Hill).

Tickets to Syracuse Opera’s “Tosca” start at $18 and are available by calling the Syracuse Opera Box Office at (315) 47-OPERA (476-7372) or visiting and clicking on “Purchase Tickets.”

Free for all Syracuse Opera “Tosca” ticket holders: Backstage Pass pre-performance opera talks hosted by Douglas Kinney Frost, director of music, in the lower orchestra section of the Crouse-Hinds Theater one hour prior to each performance. Each Backstage Pass discussion lasts approximately 30 minutes.

And don’t forget… Enter Syracuse Opera’s benefit raffle to win two SU Men’s Basketball 2012-13 court side season tickets. Raffle tickets are $35 each or four for $100. Proceeds to benefit Syracuse Opera. Winning ticket will be drawn Oct. 23. For tickets, call (315) 476-7372 or visit