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An Aria A Day #39

‘Ave Maria’
from Otello
by Giuseppe Verdi
Arrangement by Narelle French

16th June, 2020

Rebecca Cassidy is currently undertaking tutelage through Opera Queensland’s 2020 Young Artist Program. The initiative offers professional artists at the beginning of their career a program of exceptional training and development activities including individual coaching, stagecraft technique, language tuition and involvement in Opera Queensland’s main stage productions, community and corporate engagement events. Your donation to Opera Queensland will allow us to continue supporting emerging artists and prepare for a return to the stage as soon as possible.

Opera Queensland’s 2020 Young Artist Rebecca Cassidy shares Verdi’s heart-rending ‘Ave Maria’. The character of Desdemona prays for all the people who suffer as much as she does. But her prayers won’t stop the jealous Otello from murdering her in this poignant aria from the last act of Verdi’s great opera. Using Shakespeare’s ‘Othello’ as the foundation of the work, Verdi did not use every detail from the original, instead fusing it with rich interpretation to create what has been explained as a ‘brilliantly inauthentic’ homage to Shakespeare’s original work.

We recently introduced you to our 2020 Young Artist, Rebecca Cassidy, a soprano with exceptional ability. We invited Rebecca to record an aria for our digital performance program, An Aria A Day. Rebecca vividly remembers her parents taking her to see a touring production of ‘Carmen’ in Townsville, when she was still in primary school. She was captivated by the power and emotional intensity of the performance and knew instantly she wanted to become an opera singer.

For An Aria a Day, Rebecca sings, ‘Ave Maria’ from Verdi’s ‘Otello’. A beautiful prayer sung by Desdemona moments before Otello takes her life.

Participating in Opera Queensland’s Young Artist Program this year is a turning point for her career.

We are delighted to share this exclusive aria with you and invite you to donate to our 2020 Annual Appeal to help support our emerging artists. Donations made during our Annual Appeal have the power to deliver double the impact. The Mather Foundation has generously pledged to match donations, so whatever you donate is effectively doubled. For instance, $100 becomes $200 or $500 becomes $1000. For more information and to donate visit

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