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Posted: August 25, 2014

Kimberley’s Underground Operatunity

You don’t even have to be an opera buff to realize this a quality music and heritage blending that will stay with you a long time.

Click to enlarge
Click to enlarge

On Sunday, Sept. 6, the Kimberley Underground Railway and Sullivan Mine and Railway History Society will be presenting ‘Opera Underground’ featuring members of the Calgary Concert Opera Company.

The evening presentation will begin with a train ride and mine tour with opera singers embracing hard rock acoustics, with wine and cheese to top it all off.

“We will be offering familiar songs from several operas sung by three professionals with the incredible acoustics of the Underground Interpretive Centre from a couple of locations. We will also intertwine this with an Interpretive Centre Tour to be followed by a wine and cheese reception at the Station,” explained Sharon Henry of the Sullivan Mine and Railway History Society.

The train will leave the station at 6:30 p.m. and return to the Station about 8 p.m. for the wine and cheese reception. This event is limited to 60 participants (one train load).

“During our last First Saturday we will be doing Resort Express trains at 10, 11 and 12.  And mining shows, which will include a sneak preview of the opera underground – a song or two – at 1 and 3 p.m. Sunday, which will be the last tour of the season, will be back to our regular schedule – scenic express at 10 a.m. and mining shows at 11 a.m., 1 and 3 p.m.,” Henry added.

Bios of opera singers taking part

KUR Barbara King - HeadshotBarbara KingMezzo Soprano – 
Barbara King is thrilling audiences with her “exquisite vocal command of a three octave range” and the possession of a “warm, agile mezzo-soprano voice.” A native of Montréal, Qué., Barbara currently resides in Calgary, Alta., where she sang as Countess Ceprano with Calgary Opera in Rigoletto.

Barbara’s credits include Maddalena (Rigoletto), Carmen (Carmen), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Romeo (I Capuleti ed I Montecchi), La Zia Principessa (Suor Angelica), Berta (Il Barbiere di Siviglia) , Mistress Quickly (Falstaff), Charlotte (Werther), the Third Lady (The Magic Flute), and Frugola (Il Tabarro). 
Ms. King has had the pleasure of singing with Calgary Opera, Tuscia Opera Festival in Viterbo, Italy, Opera by Request in Toronto, Amalfi Coast Music Festival in Italy, Barrie’s Colours of Music Festival, Opera Nuova, Calgary Concert Opera Company, Cowtown Opera and Mercury Opera. 
International concert performances include Carnegie Hall (New York), Felton Fleet Academy (Surrey, England), The Opera Institute of California (San Jose), Coesfeld Germany, and the Canadian Vocal Arts Institute in Montréal. Upcoming roles include Dorabella (Cosi fan Tutte) and Laura (La Gioconda).

KUR Uwe DambruchUwe DambruchBass-Baritone – 
German born and Calgary based Bass-Baritone Uwe Dambruch has performed with Frankfurt Opera, Deutsche Oper am Rhein Duesseldorf, Zuerich, Hannover, Karlsruhe, Bayreuth Festival, Taiwan Symphony, Vancouver Opera, Calgary Opera, Edmonton Opera, Pacific Opera Victoria, Opera Hamilton, North Carolina Opera Company, Florentine Opera in Milwaukee, Alberta Ballet and sang Wagnerian excerpts in the Cannes award-wining film Wahnfried.
His repertoire includes Raimondo (Lucia di Lammermoor), Don Basilio (The Barber of Seville), Sarastro (The Magic Flute), Timur (Turandot), Sparafucile (Rigoletto), Ramfis (Aida), Mefistophele (Faust), Daland (The Flying Dutchman) and many others.

KUR Michele Cusson HeadshotMichèle CussonSoprano – 
Calgary born soprano Michèle Cusson completed her Bachelor’s degree at Westminster Choir College in Princeton, Master’s degree and post-graduate diploma at l’Université de Montréal and specialist’s diploma at the St. Petersburg Conservatory in Russia. 
Upcoming engagements include Julie in Dvorak’s Jakobin with Opera by Request in Toronto, concerts with Les Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyrique in Montréal, concerts with Calgary Concert Opera Company in Kimberly, BC and Airdrie, AB and Dvorak’s Gypsy songs with the Mountain View Connection Concert Series in Calgary.
Recent engagements include orchestral concerts in China with the iSing! Festival in Suzhou, Hangzhou and Beijing where she learned to speak and sing in Mandarin, an artist residency at the prestigious Banff Centre to record a CD of Russian Romances, a grant from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts to study Wagner and Verdi repertoire in NYC, orchestral concerts with The New York Concerti Sinfonietta and concerts in Burgundy, France at La Roche D’Hys Domaine des Arts.  Michèle is a proud recipient of multiple grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, Alberta Foundation for the Arts, The Banff Centre and Calgary Arts Development.
A finalist in the Liederkranz Wagner Competition, semi-finalist in the Loren Zachary Competition, prize winner at the Zara Dolukhanova Art Song Competition in Kalingrad, Russia and a Laureate of Les Jeunes Ambassadeurs Lyriques, her roles include: Jenufa, Julie/Jakobin, Liza/Queen of Spades, Zemfira/Aleko, Suor Angelica, Giorgetta/Il Tabarro, Alice Ford, Donna Elvira, Rosalinde, Countess and Micaëla.   Michèle has performed in Russia, China, Israel, Bulgaria, Italy, Germany, France, England, Austria, USA and Canada, in venues including Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall, Madison Square Gardens and The Great Hall of the People in Tian’anmen Square, Beijing.

Tickets can be purchased at the Kimberley Underground Railway Station or by calling 250-427-0022 or be going to


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