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By Felicity Clarke, Senior Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO – The dazzling charm of it’s ornate beauty and accompanying historical significance have been the main draws of the Theatro Municipal since it re-opened its doors in May after extensive renovations. However, the theater in Cinelândia has also been dazzling audiences with big name artists and spectacular performances, and the October program is packed with a range of jazz, ballet, opera and classical music highlights.

American opera singer Jessye Norman performs on October 19th, photo by Picasaweb Creative Commons License.

Starting the month in smooth style on October 2nd is American jazz pianist Brad Melhdau. Beyond working with renowned artists such as John Meyer and Pat Methany, Melhdau performs and records with his own trio and is known for his jazz arrangements of popular rock hits by bands like Radiohead, The Beatles and Nick Drake. A second jazz highlight of the month is The Jazz Orchestra of the Concertgebouw on October 18th, an ensemble comprised of the eighteen most talented jazz musicians from the Netherlands.

On October 19th, The theater welcomes Jessye Norman, one of the most widely-respected and admired contemporary opera singers in the world. A powerful soprano with a dramatic stage presence, emotional expression and incredible musical understanding, seventy year-old Norman, who hails from Georgia, USA, is a diva in true operatic fashion.

Cited as one of the greatest ballet dancers of the 20th century, Mikhail Baryshnikov performs in Rio this month, photo by Hardrocker01/Wikipedia Creative Commons License.

The highlights of the month’s ballet program are performances by international ballet superstar Mikhail Baryshnikov and his dance partner Ana Laguna on October 29th and 31st . Baryshnikov, who is also well known for his acting role as Alexandr Petrovsky in the US TV show Sex and the City, is bringing his Three Solos and a Duet show to Brazil following successful runs in Europe and the U.S. The show presents four pieces by choreographers Alexei Ratmansky, Mats Ek and Benjamin Millepied.

For full-company ballet at Theatro Municipal there’s the Ballet Grand Geneva on October 25th, 26th and 27th, a small company with international acclaimed for their fresh, modern style. There is also a series of performances of the Nineteenth Century ballet classic, running Don Quixote from October 7th to 17th.

The Theatro Municipal is also the official home of the Brazilian Symphonic Orchestra (OSB) who will give three concerts in October as part of their ongoing series. On the afternoon of October 2nd, the critically acclaimed German-Japanese pianist Alice Sara Ott plays Chopin, Lizst and Greig with them as part of the Série Turmalina Pianistas. Swiss conductor Matthias Bamert then makes his Brazil debut with OSB as part of the Série Ônix in a performance which features cello soloist Antônio Meneses on October 8th. The Série Topázio continues on October 16th with the orchestra’s maestro Roberto Minczuk leading the them in performances of pieces by Wagner and Ligeti.

For more information on Theatro Municipal’s program, prices and how to buy tickets visit http://www.theatromunicipal.rj.gov.br

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