Rufus Wainwright, playing the McPherson Playhouse on May 19, has had a much-varied career in music. Photo contributed

Canadian ‘popera’ icon hits town May 19

Rufus Wainwright has collaborated with the likes of Elton John, David Byrne and Joni Mitchell

Rufus Wainwright brings his trademark showmanship to Victoria on May 19 with a concert at the McPherson Playhouse.

On an eight-stop tour of California, Washington and BC, the New York-born and Montreal-raised Wainwright is sure to play beloved music stretching back through his much varied, but never boring 20-odd year career.

This Juno Award winner comes from music family royalty, including parents Loudon Wainwright III and Kate McGarrigle, and sister Martha Wainwright, who recently played in Victoria. Wainwright has achieved perhaps the most success of them all, especially with his hit albums Want One, Poses and Release the Stars.

Having collaborated with such legends as Elton John, David Byrne and Joni Mitchell, Wainwright has also made a name for himself in the classical world and is getting ready to premier his second opera, Hadrian, in Toronto in October.

His first opera, Prima Donna, premiered at the Manchester International Festival in 2009 and went on to be performed in London, Toronto and the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Hadrian was commissioned by the Canadian Opera Company and is based on the story of Roman Emperor Hadrian and Antinous.

From pop delight to beautiful ballads to the music of Judy Garland, Wainwright’s talent is multifaceted and will be on full display Saturday, May 19. For tickets visit rmts.bc.ca, call 250-386-6121 or head to the McPherson box office.

– Monday staff

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