What would you do to have one more moment with someone that you love who unexpectedly passed away? This is a question that has been posed to mortals since time began. If you are like Orfeo, you are willing to go to the bowels of Hell to reclaim your beloved. Based on the Greek mythological tale of the lovers Orfeo and Eurydice, Gluck’s opera Orfeo delves into the bereaved lover’s mind and the lengths that they are willing to take.

In Kentucky Opera’s upcoming production, which has not been performed in over two decades, director Kelly Kitchens adds a touch of personal experience to her vision of the story. “Where does fantasy collide with reality?” Kitchens asks. “As humans we are often looking for that second chance, so I want to show the audience a different, but relevant take on the torment that Orfeo is facing with the loss of their Euridice.”

“Louisville and Kentucky audiences, I have found, are quite open and receptive to new ideas and concepts and I am excited to be able to bring this work to the Brown Theatre stage,” she adds. “Furthermore, I am over the moon thrilled with the opportunity to work with Robert Curran and the Louisville Ballet for this production.”

To further the expanse and talent that will bloom forth from the stage, Orfeo will feature the use of period instruments from Bourbon Baroque, which was founded by John Austin Clark. These instrumentalists will work with guest conductor Judith Yan, as well as members of the Louisville Orchestra.

Featuring Catherine Martin as Orfeo, Flora Hawk as Euridice, and Catherine Goode as Amore, Orfeo should be a deep dive into what fuels our past, present and future as it pertains to life, love and loss.

In closing, Kitchens hopes that Orfeo will provide a catharsis for each audience member. And how appropriate that we should embrace everlasting love on a Valentine’s Day weekend? Performances are February 11, 2022, at 8 p.m. and February 13, 2022, at 2 p.m. at the Brown Theatre.

Purchase tickets at KYOpera.org