Penley Collaborates with UWG Opera

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Noted artist Steve Penley has created four paintings for the upcoming production of the opera “Carmen” at the University of West Georgia.

Noted artist Steve Penley has created four paintings for the upcoming production of the opera “Carmen” at the University of West Georgia. This is a first-time collaboration between Penley and Dr. Larry Frazier, the director of the opera workshop. Frazier approached Penley about working together.

“It’s a remarkable gift,” Frazier said. “I’m so appreciative of it.”

Penley, who lives in Carrollton, was eager to do the work and produced the paintings, one for each act of Georges Bizet’s 19th century piece.

“He wanted to support the local arts,” said Carrie Penley, his wife. “He’s very excited about the project and thought that it would be fun to be a part of it. UWG is a great school and he loves that we are able to put on a production like this.”

Formetco, the outdoor advertising giant based in Duluth, will use a proprietary process to transform the paintings into 22-foot-by-45-foot scenic drops for the production.

Penley’s work is in the Coca-Cola Pop Art Gallery in Atlanta, the Georgia State Capital and the Federal Reserve Board in Washington D.C., among many others.

His books include “Ronald Reagan And The American Ideal” and “The Reconstruction of America.” He painted the illustrations for “Vince Dooley's Garden: The Horticultural Journey of A Football Coach.”
“Carmen” features UWG students in the principal roles.

The singers include: Abigail Dawkins, soprano, as Carmen; Alex McCurdy, tenor, as Don Jose; Robby Vizurraga, bass-baritone, as Escamillo the Toreador; Joy Anderson, soprano, as Michaela; and Travis Watkins, bass-baritone, as Lt. Zuniga.

The cigarette factory women in the production are Chaneya Joiner, soprano; Ashley Quartey, soprano; Kernetia Barnes, soprano; and Rebekah Knott, mezzo-soprano.

It will be sung in English. The Carroll Community Wind Ensemble will supply the woodwinds and brass players.

There will be two performances at the Townsend Center for the Performing Arts: Thursday, March 8, at 8:15 p.m. and Saturday, March 10, at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets:  $10 adults, $7 senior citizens, $5 non-UWG students, $3 children 12 and under, free for UWG students with ID.

For more information contact Frazier, lfrazier@westga.edu or 678-839-6265.