Spoleto Festival USA
Experience an exciting variety of world-class music, opera, and theater performances at Charleston's Spoleto Festival USA.
WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY
This tour has been exceptionally wonderful and far surpassed the tour description! The Spoleto events were fabulous and exciting... The entire trip was wondrous and exceptionally planned to delight and bring pleasure.”
I have often wanted to attend Spoleto. Smithsonian made it easy and more rewarding.”
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2015 program of performances just announced!
Experience an exciting variety of world-class music, opera, theater, and more at Charleston’s Spoleto Festival USA. Enjoy prime seating for seven of Spoleto’s top events, presentations by music scholar Stan Engebretson, and exclusive VIP lectures and meetings with Spoleto Festival staff, including General Director Nigel Redden. Performances include Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet; the baroque opera Veremonda l’amazzone di Aragona by Italian composer Francesco Cavalli; an exhilarating acrobatic spectacle by Australia’s Casus Circus; Bach’s monumental St. Matthew Passion; and a performance by Vietnam’s world-renowned Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theater. You’ll also hear the joyous sounds of Spoleto’s Chamber Music series and the exquisite voices of the Westminster Choir. Plus, explore the city of Charleston by horse-drawn carriage, dine at some of the city’s famed restaurants, including the Charleston Grille, and stay at the historic Mills House Hotel. Limited to 28 participants
May 31 — Welcome & Music: Westminster Choir
Individual arrivals at The Mills House Hotel in Charleston. Gather for a welcome reception with your Smithsonian Journeys Expert Stan Engebretson. Enjoy a festive welcome dinner then depart the hotel for your first performance. The Westminster Choir performs David Lang’s Pulitzer Prize-winning The Little Match Girl Passion with new choreography by Pontus Lidberg along with Carissimi’s Jephte. (R,D)
June 1 — Chamber Music Series & Theater: Romeo & Juliet
Enjoy a presentation by Stan Engebretson preparing you for the day’s events. Attend a stirring performance of Spoleto’s Chamber Music Series then enjoy a festive lunch at Magnolia Café. The remainder of your afternoon will be at leisure. After dinner independently gather in the hotel lobby and depart for your evening event, Romeo and Juliet. Shakespeare’s Globe Theater makes its Festival debut with a brand new production of the Bard’s timeless tragedy in which youthful passion and warring families intertwine. (B,L)
June 2 — Boone Hall Plantation Tour & Opera: Veremonda l’amazzone di Aragona
Depart the hotel for Boone Hall Plantation in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina. One of America's oldest working and living plantations, they have been continuously growing and producing crops for over three centuries. Enjoy a guided tour of the mansion and gardens. Afterwards, there will be a picnic lunch. This evening attend an opera performance of Veremonda l’amazzone di Aragona. The Spanish King and Queen’s siege of the Moorish fort on the Rock of Gibraltar is tangled with passionate love stories and comical mistaken identities in Cavalli’s 1652 opera. (B,L)
June 3 — Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theater & Music: St. Matthew Passion
Take a narrated carriage ride through historic Charleston in the morning then return to the hotel for a presentation by Stan Engebretson. In the afternoon enjoy a special performance of the Golden Dragon Water Puppet Theatre. A Vietnamese cultural treasure these traditional puppets perform with live music in a specially constructed pool. This evening depart for a spellbinding evening of music with conductor Joe Miller, who’ll leads Bach’s double choir and double orchestra in the monumental St. Matthew Passion. (B)
June 4 — Charleston Grill & Physical Theater: Knee Deep
Enjoy a presentation by Stan Engebretson. This afternoon will be at leisure then enjoy your farewell dinner at Charleston Grill. Afterwards attend a performance of Knee Deep. Australian company Casus Circus makes its Festival debut with this bold and captivating work (B,D)
June 5 — Depart for Home
Enjoy breakfast before individual departures from the hotel. (B)