Caroline Copeland, adjunct assistant professor of dance, performed in Pergolesi’s comedies La serva padrona (1733) and Livietta e Tracollo (1734) and served as choreographer and dancer in the North American premiere of André Campra’s Le Carnaval de Venise (1699) at the 19th Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF), held June 11-18. The Festival was reviewed glowingly in The New York Times. Professor Copeland shared this prestigious performance opportunity with three of her students – Julian Donahue ’19 and Lindsay Gray ‘18, who danced in Le Carnaval, and Gina Ray ’18, who served as an intern and assistant to Professor Copeland and the Festival Director Melinda Sullivan.
Donahue, Gray and Ray participated in the 2017 Festival through its Young Artists Program and received funding to spend the month prior to the performance in Boston rehearsing their roles with an international cast. Le Carnaval was the centerpiece production of the Festival, performed at Emerson College’s Cutler Majestic Theatre.
Recognized as the preeminent early music presenter and Baroque opera producer in North America, the Boston Early Music Festival (BEMF) has been credited by The Boston Globe with securing Boston’s reputation as “America’s early music capital.” Founded in 1981, BEMF offers diverse programs and activities, including one Grammy Award-winning and four Grammy Award-nominated opera recordings, an annual concert series, and the biennial week-long Festival and Exhibition.
The New York Times called Professor Copeland a “welcome omnipresence.” The Wall Street Journal praised Le Carnaval as “fabulously and variously choreographed in period style by Caroline Copeland.” And the Boston Globe also singled out her work: “Now gracious, now spirited, Caroline Copeland’s choreography — gavotte, passepied, rigaudon, bourrée, chaconne, forlana, and much more — underlines the opera’s political theme of reconciliation: Dancing starts where fighting ends.”