Chicago Tribune, January 5, 2016
by Community Contributor Ann Fink
Wilmette’s Leo Radosavlijevic takes the stage as Don Alfonso when New Philharmonic, under the direction of Kirk Muspratt, presents “Cosi fan tutte (Women Are Like That)” composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and featuring a libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte, at Glen Ellyn’s McAninch Arts Center Saturday, Jan. 23 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Jan. 24 at 3 p.m.
Internationally-acclaimed director Jonathan Field stage directs this popular comedic opera using a reality TV spin, and giving audiences the chance to pick from one of three endings for their performance. “Cosi fan tutte” will be performed in Italian with English supertitles.
In “Cosi fan tutte,” two young men wager that their fiancées will remain faithful, even when tempted. To prove it, they decide to do the tempting themselves. The questions of desire and fidelity enter into what is ultimately an exploration of love conducted with an entertaining mix of drama and biting comedy.
The opera opens with Don Alfonso, played by Wilmette’s Leo Radosavlijevic (baritone) wagers that the two girls, Fiordiligi and Dorabella, are no more trustworthy in matters of love than any other women.
Last summer, Radosavlijevic (baritone) participated in Ravinia Festival’s Steans Young Artist Program, where he performed Schubert, Liszt, Beethoven, Ives. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Juilliard where he performed the roles of Tobias Mill in “La Cambiale di Matrimonio,” Carlino in “Don Pasquale,” Bottom in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and Simone in “Gianni Schicchi.” Honors include recipient of the 2 nd place prize from The Bel Canto Foundation Vocal competition in Chicago, as well as several Encouragement Awards from the Gerda Lissner, Licia Albanese and Giulio Gari competitions in New York.
The cast for “Cosi fan tutte” also features Jessica Faselt (Fiordiligi); Kathryn Leemhuis (Dorabella), Paul Scholten (Guglielmo), Aaron Short (Ferrando) and Angela De Venuto (Despina).
New Philharmonic, under the direction of Maestro Kirk Muspratt, presents “Cosi fan tutte (Women Are Like That)” at the McAninch Arts Center, located on the campus of College of DuPage, 425 Fawell Blvd., Glen Ellyn, Saturday, Jan. 23 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Jan. 24 at 3 p.m. Tickets are $55 adult; $53 senior/youth. A limited number of $10 student tickets will also be available, with valid student ID. To order tickets, call 630.942.4000, or visit AtTheMAC.org.