July 28, 2022
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Pittsburgh Opera begins its 84th Season with Dvořák’s Rusalka, “Opera’s Little Mermaid”, Sept. 17-25


Photo from the opera Rusalka. Photo by Dan Norman.

Rusalka the water sprite gives the witch Ježibaba her voice in exchange for being made human. Photo by Dan Norman.

Pittsburgh Opera’s first production of its 2022–23 season is Dvořák’s Rusalka, “Opera’s Little Mermaid”, September 17-25 at the Benedum Center.

Rusalka is the Czech version of the popular fairy tale The Little Mermaid. While it has many similarities to the familiar animated movie, they are not exactly the same. First of all, her name is not Ariel, it’s Rusalka. Secondly, Rusalka is not a mermaid per se, but a water sprite, also called a water nymph. However, like the Little Mermaid, Rusalka falls in love with a human Prince. She has a witch turn her into a human in exchange for her voice. Rusalka must win and keep the Prince’s love, or else there will be disastrous consequences for them both.

Will a jealous Princess ruin Rusalka’s plan? Will Rusalka’s father be able to bail her out if things go awry? Will true love triumph?

Rusalka premiered in 1901 and has become one of the most beloved lyric fairy tales of all time. These are the first-ever performances of Rusalka in Pittsburgh Opera’s 84-year history.

Music Director Antony Walker conducts; Kristine McIntyre directs.

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