Opera Ithaca to Present New Filmed Production of ‘Hansel and Gretel’

By Logan Martell

On Dec. 19, 2021, Opera Ithaca will present the world premiere of their original film production of “Hansel and Gretel.”

The production will feature a new English libretto by OI Artistic Director Ben Robinson. This adaptation casts the Witch as a celebrity chef, who hosts the children on her show as both the guest stars and main ingredients. The project brings together the chamber orchestra from Resonance Works Pittsburgh, under the baton of Maria Sensi Sellner, along with the Pittsburgh Youth Chorus, and Raylynmor Opera

The cast includes mezzo-soprano Annie Rosen as Hansel, Marlen Nahhas as Gretel, acclaimed soprano Meghan Kasanders as both the Witch and Mother, Mario Diaz-Moresco as Father, Mariya Kaganskaya as Sandman, and Megnot Toggia as the Dew Fairy.

“Hansel and Gretel is the next step in Opera Ithaca’s exploration of the confluence of opera and film,” says Robinson, “and the transformation of the Witch into a celebrity chef with her own TV show adds a delightful and surprising element that binds the whole project together.”