Master Class returns to Theatre On The Bay

Sandra Prinsloo as Maria Callas. PICTURE: Annène van Eeden

The production Master Class starring Sandra Prinsloo returns to Theatre on The Bay by popular demand from Tuesday September 26 to Saturday September 30, at 8pm, with a 3pm matinee on Saturday.

Directed by Cape Town Opera’s (CTO) artistic director, Magdalene Minnaar, with musical direction by José Dias, the two-act play that was written by the late Terrence McNally once again stars Sandra Prinsloo as Maria Callas and features well-known arias by Verdi, Puccini and Bellini.

Prinsloo, in a purely acting role, will be joined by a supporting Cape Town Opera cast including soprano Siphamadla Moyake together with CTO’s Judith Neilson Young Artists Alida Scheepers and Tylor Lamani as the aspiring opera singers mentored by Callas. Dineo Bokala is the “stagehand” and Dias takes on a dual role as pianist and actor.

Master Class is a portrait of Callas in the context of the master classes she gave at the Juilliard School in New York in 1971, at a time when she herself had not sung in six years. In the play she is seen working with three students – two sopranos and a tenor. Aside from her biting wit, she is often blunt and even harsh in her efforts to mentor and prepare the singers for the cut-throat world of operatic performance.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of Maria Callas’ birth. She was born in New York in 1923 to a family of impoverished Greek immigrants. As the play progresses, the diva shares insights and memories, recalling her experiences on the world’s grandest opera stages, her marriage to the wealthy industrialist Giovanni Battista Meneghini and her highly publicised affair with Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis.

Tickets cost from R180 through Webtickets. No under 13’s allowed.