Opera fans only have to go to Las Positas College to enjoy "A Night at the Met."
Metropolitan Opera star mezzo-soprano Frederica von Stade will perform onstage and will also mingle with guests at a special event that begins at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, co-hosted by the Las Positas College Foundation to benefit Livermore Valley Opera..
"This special event promises to be an unforgettable evening," said Jim Schmidt, president of Livermore Valley Opera. "We are most grateful to Ms. von Stade, who, in addition to singing, will speak of her professional life experiences, as well as her current involvement with the Young Musicians Choral Orchestra, whom she mentors. A small contingent of these special students will take the stage with Ms. von Stade."
Young Musicians Choral Orchestra provides year-round music training, academic tutoring and personal guidance for talented, low-income students ages 9 to 18.
To set the mood for this event, the spacious theater lobby at the Barbara F. Mertes Center for the Arts at the college will have decorations that invoke the feeling of "a night at the Met." Prior to the performance, guests will enjoy wines, including some produced by the Las Positas College Viticulture and Winery Technology department, and Posada Restaurant hors d'oeuvres. Following the performance, von Stade will attend an audience reception that includes cheeses and desserts.
The stage portion of the evening will end with a single Fund-a-Need auction item to benefit Livermore Valley Opera as well as von Stade's Young Musicians Choral Orchestra.
"This event aligns with the goals of LPC's growing music arts program, which now exceeds 30 courses spanning the topics of jazz, harmony, orchestra, piano, guitar, voice and much more," said LPC Theater Arts Department Coordinator Titian Lish. "It also illustrates to our students the importance of philanthropy by the artist, as demonstrated by Frederica von Stade's commitment to young talent."
Von Stade began her career at the top when she received a contract from Sir Rudolf Bing during the Metropolitan Opera auditions. Since her debut in 1970, she has sung nearly all of her great roles with that company. She has also appeared with every leading American opera company, including the San Francisco Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago and the Los Angeles Opera.
In Europe, she had new productions mounted for her at Teatro alla Scala, Royal Opera Covent Garden, the Vienna State Opera and the Paris Opera. She is invited regularly to appear with the world's leading orchestras and has starred in PBS specials and "Live from Lincoln Center" telecasts.
"The Las Positas College Foundation is honored to co-present with the Livermore Valley Opera a caliber of talent such as Frederica von Stade," said Stephanie Beasly, chair of the LPC Foundation Board of Directors. "Our intent is to identify Las Positas College with a broad range of high-quality fine arts performances such as this that will enrich both our students and the Bay Area public."
Tickets are $125 per person. For more information or to purchase, visit www.livermorevalleyopera.com. Las Positas College is located at 3000 Campus Hill Drive in Livermore.