Syracuse Opera opens book clubs to public

Little Women pairs reading book with attending opera.

Syracuse Opera and area public libraries are joining forces to promote literacy through a fun and entertaining outlet.

Coinciding with their mainstage production of Little Women in May, Syracuse Opera launched their community-wide pro-literacy campaign,Little Women, which pairs underserved middle school girls with volunteer mentors to read Louisa May Alcott's novel together. The pairs met at a Civil War tea in March, will go to book club meetings in April, and attend the opera performance in May. Local libraries will be hosting book club meetings throughout the month of April which are free and open to the public.

{Q}"It's a great way to encourage reading and introduce community members to the art form of opera,"{Q} said Cathy Wolff, General & Artistic Director of Syracuse Opera. "We realized early on that the concept of enjoying the book and the opera together is open to everyone and not just the participants of our program. County libraries have ordered extra books for circulation in their branches, book club meetings are open to the public, and opera tickets start as low as $18," she added.

Those interested in catching a sneak-peek of the upcoming opera or fans of the beloved story are encouraged to attend one of three "book clubs" being held in April -- April 15 at the Manlius Library. All events begin at 7 p.m. and will feature guest readers and excerpts from the opera Little Women performed by Syracuse Opera's Resident Artists.

County Executive Joanie Mahoney will be a celebrity reader for the April 1 book club, while WSTM TV 3 anchors Laura Hand and Jackie Robinson will appear as readers at the second and third readings respectively.

Ticket prices for the opera start at $18 and are still available for the Friday May 1 performance at 8 p.m. and the Sunday May 3 matinee at 2:30 p.m.

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