Critic’s Choice

By David Fleshler

Misty Leah Bermudez stars in Seraphic Fire’s performances of Purcell’s opera “Dido and Aeneas” this weekend.

Seraphic Fire’s production of Purcell’s opera Dido and Aeneas opens Friday in Fort Lauderdale, giving audiences the chance to hear what promises to be a first-rate performance of the oldest opera in the standard repertoire.

Sung in English and running less than an hour, the 1689 work tells the story of the Trojan prince Aeneas and the Carthaginian Queen Dido, whose love is thwarted by an evil sorceress. The opera contains the famous Dido’s Lament, or When I am Laid in Earth, a heartbreaking aria by the despairing Queen. Accompanying the choir will be the Firebird Chamber Orchestra.

Appearing as Dido is mezzo-soprano Misty Leah Bermudez, whose full-toned, highly expressive solos have long been a standout at Seraphic Fire performances. In the role of Aeneas is the baritone David McFerrin, who gave an authoritative performance in the role the last time Seraphic Fire performed the opera. In the role of Belinda is the soprano Kathryn Mueller, another highly regarded member who will be the soloist in Seraphic Fire’s Vivaldi concerts next month. In the role of the sorceress will be the mezzo-soprano Amanda Crider, who has appeared on operatic stages around the United States and soloed with the New World Symphony.

Performances are 7:30 p.m. Friday at All Saints’ Episcopal Church, Fort Lauderdale; 8 p.m. Saturday at First United Methodist Church, Coral Gables; and 3:30 p.m. Sunday at St. Gregory’s Episcopal Church, Boca Raton.

For tickets, go to or call 305-285-9060.

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Wed Feb 20, 2013
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