Years ago a very, very well-known local leader let it be known that he loved the arts, except for opera. Didn’t care for plump people howling on stage. He would have changed his tune had he attended Tuesday’s 19th Annual Juanita and Henry S. Miller Jr. Founders Award Luncheon at Brook Hollow Golf Club. Women’s Board of the Dallas Opera’s Co-President Lissie Donosky and Jolie Humphrey along with Luncheon Chair Kim Miller (and her sidekick/mom-in-law Tincy Miller) put together an event that even that “local leader” would have enjoyed.
In addition to the very well-deserved kudos and tributes paid to 2011 Founders Award Recipients Sara and David Martineau, there were performances by the two leads in the Dallas Opera’s “Romeo and Juliet.”
Charles “Romeo” Castronovo is no Pavarotti. He’s a hunky GQ type with an equally gorgeous tenor voice. And don’t even think of comparing Lyubov “Juilet” Petrova to Sutherland. She’s a horrible flirt and delicious soprano.
With no microphones and only a piano accompanist, their voices turned Brook Hollow’s dining room into a mini-Winspear with Margot, Don and Ellen Winspear tableside. The singers’ solos not only had the wait staff at Brook Hollow mesmerized, even a couple of the valet parkers snuck in to hear these two. Following their final duet of the toast song from “La Traviata.” the entire room of 200 rose to salute their performances and Sara and David.
While Lyubov seemed to have Charles’ attention with her twinkling eyes and adorable smile, the New York tenor with Andy Garcia “Wow!” looks and GQ attire had a couple of the ladies in the audience fanning themselves.
(Editor’s note: While modern technology has made music breathtaking via iPods and other electronic gadgets, it still cannot showcase the live interaction of two extremely talented professionals. The wink of the eye, the slight smile and a nod of approval are still best witnessed in person.)
If you haven’t had a chance to see Charles and Lyubov, or rather “Romeo and Juliet,” hustle down to the Winspear because its finishes its run Sunday.
And remember — “Romeo and Juliet” and other productions can only take place when the funds are provided by groups like the Women’s Board of the Dallas Opera. Brava, ladies.