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Ruins venue for island opera

January 12, 2006

Ruins venue for island opera

Opera fans would do well to take note of a musical event the tenor of which is almost certainly unique in the South Pacific.

It's the Norfolk Island Opera in the Ruins, the night the remains of the island's penal settlement come alive with an exciting mix of popular opera, operetta, ballads and stage songs.

The sound of sopranos, tenors and baritones will reverberate through the historic seaside ruins during two big dusk concerts on February 22 and 24.

Part of Norfolk's 2006 Sesquicentenary marking 150 years of settlement by descendants of the Bounty mutiny, the production will feature the acclaimed Brisbane opera troupe Operatif and the string ensemble Offenbach Trio, also from Brisbane.

Organisers are promising goosebumps when the performers treat guests to a mix of highlights from opera productions such as La Traviata, La Boheme, Carmen and The Pearl Fishers, as well as popular toe-tapping songs from stage musicals including West Side Story.

A special 'Intermezzo' dinner concert by the Offenbach Trio on February 23 will also be on the programme for holidaying opera buffs as part of Norfolk's second annual Opera in the Ruins Festival.

Catered by Governors Lodge, one of the sub-tropical island's leading resorts, the concert will include a three-course dinner featuring Norfolk Island's renowned fresh cuisine with sparkling wine on arrival.

Concerts will be performed in a marquee in two halves of about 50 minutes with an interval. Between the concerts, visitors will be able to hear bards recite poetry under the pines as part of Norfolk's popular Poetry in the Park Festival.

Other Norfolk Island diversions include lazing on uncrowded beaches and under the island's famous pines as well as enjoying its 35 eateries, 70 tax-free shops and 71 resorts, guesthouses, cottages and apartments - 60 per cent of them rated four stars and above.

The Travel Centre on Norfolk has special 'Opera in the Ruins' holiday packages including return flights, seven nights twin share accommodation, seven days car hire, airfare and departure taxes, airport transfers, a meet and greet service and entry to Norfolk's lush private rainforest, A Walk in the Wild.

The deals are available from $872 per person from Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.


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