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Opera in the Albanian Cultural Garden

Opera in the Albanian Cultural Garden
Albanian Cultural Garden in Cleveland
August 20, 2017

The Albanian Cultural Garden hosted an opera performance and hundreds of people showed up to enjoy the beautiful setting, great food and music from the Cleveland Opera Theater. The stage was set on the upper level of the Albanian Garden by the fountain.

Albanian Cultural Garden stage

Megan Thompson, Director of Community Outreach and Engagement, welcomed the crowd.

Megan Thompson

Megan Thompson


She introduced Cleveland Councilwoman Dona Brady who spoke about the event and the Albanian Cultural Garden.

Dona Brady and Megan Thompson

Councilwoman Dona Brady

Councilwoman Dona Brady


Councilwoman Brady thanked the Albanian Cultural Garden team led by Armend Axhenti.

Councilwoman Dona Brady

Councilwoman Dona Brady

Armend Axhenti and Councilwoman Dona Brady

Armend Axhenti and Councilwoman Dona Brady

Albanian Cultural Garden crew

Albanian Cultural Garden crew


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The first performance was by Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink who sang Voi che sapete from Le Nozze de Figaro by Mozart.



Soprano Claire Connelly sang Deh vieni, non tardar from Le Nozze de Figaro by Mozart.




Baritone James Eder sang La vendetta from Le Nozze de Figaro by Mozart.



Baritone James Eder and soprano Claire Connelly sang La ci darem la mano from Don Giovanni by Mozart.

James Eder and Claire Connelly

James Eder and Claire Connelly




Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink sang Una voce poco fa from Il Barbiere di Siviglia by Rossini.



Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang Questa o quella from Rigoletto by Verdi.



Soprano Claire Connelly sang Caro nome from Rigoletto by Verdi.



Baritone James Eder sang Vecchia zimarra senti from La Boheme by Puccini.



Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang De' miei bollenti Spiriti from La Traviata by Verdi.



Pianist Tatiana Loisha

Pianist Tatiana Loisha


Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink sang Habanera from Carmen by Bizet.



Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang Allerseelen by Strauss.




Soprano Claire Connelly sang Jewel Song from Faust by Gounod.

Amanda Fink, Claire Connelly and Tatiana Loisha

Amanda Fink, Claire Connelly and Tatiana Loisha



In the last performance before intermission Soprano Claire Connelly and Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink sang Flower Duet from Lakme by Deliebes.



During the short intermission people toured the beautiful Albanian Cultural Garden and sampled food from Mia Bella.

Mia Bella food

Mia Bella

Mia Bella food

Priest with dog

Touring the Albanian Garden

Performers with Lithuanian Consul Ingrida Bublys

Performers with Lithuanian Consul Ingrida Bublys

Cleveland Cultual Gardens One World Day group

Cleveland Cultural Gardens One World Day group

Cleveland Cultual Gardens representatives

Many Cleveland Cultural Gardens delegates were in attendance
Vietnamese, Lithuanian, Estonian, Italian, Irish and more

Megan Thompson, Director of Community Outreach and Engagement, told about an upcoming performance and then introduced a supporter Dr. Vincent Branca who told how he became an opera lover. He then said that he has seen opera all over and that the Cleveland Opera Theater is comparable or better than any of them.

Dr. Vincent Branca

Dr. Vincent Branca

Dr. Vincent Branca



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The performances after intermission included popular classics and even some humorous pieces.

Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang Oh, is there not one maiden breast from Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert & Sullivan.

Nicholas DeMeo

Nicholas DeMeo



Baritone James Eder sang The Pirate King from Pirates of Penzance by Gilbert & Sullivan.



James Eder

James Eder


Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink and Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang the Merry Widow Duet by Lehar.

Amanda Fink and Nicholas DeMeo

Amanda Fink and Nicholas DeMeo



Soprano Claire Connelly sang Summertime from Porgy and Bess by Gershwin.

Claire Connelly

Claire Connelly




Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink sang Someone to watch over me by Gershwin.

Amanda Fink

Amanda Fink




Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang Lonely House from Kurt Weill's Street Scene.




Soprano Claire Connelly and Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang People will say we're in love from Oklahoma by Rodgers & Hammerstein.

Claire Connelly and Nicholas DeMeo

Claire Connelly and Nicholas DeMeo




Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink and Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang If I loved you from Carousel by Rodgers & Hammerstein.



Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink sang Can't help lovin' that man of mine from Showboat by Gershwin.




Baritone James Eder sang I hold her hand in mine by Tom Lehrer.

James Eder

James Eder



Baritone James Eder sang She's my girl by Tom Lehrer.



For the Grand Finale, Soprano Claire Connelly, Mezzo-Soprano Amanda Fink, Baritone James Eder and Tenor Nicholas DeMeo sang Libiamo Ne' Lieti Calici from La Traviata by Verdi. Pianist Tatiana Loisha came out for the final bows.

Cleveland Opera Theater Final Quartet

Cleveland Opera Theater Final Quartet



Cleveland Opera Theater Final Bows

Cleveland Opera Theater Final Bows

Cleveland Opera Theater Final Bows with pianist Tatiana Loisha

Congratulations to Councilwoman Dona Brady, Armend Axhenti and the Albanian Cultural Garden crew as well as the Cleveland Albanian community for bringing this wonderful first opera event in the Albanian Cultural Garden.

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Fill out the form for the free Albanian eNews.



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