Love Potions And Spells At Sands Point Preserve

Hempstead House at Sands Point

The solution for unrequited love? Drink a potion, and watch the spell take effect. The Sands Point Preserve Conservancy will hold its annual summer opera Donizetti’s comedy The Elixir of Love on Saturday, July 22, from 6 to 10 p.m. The evening begins in the historic Hempstead House for cocktail love potions, a buffet dinner and dessert. Following dinner, guests will stroll along the Great Lawn or drive to Castle Gould’s Great Hall for a performance by the North Shore Music Festival (NSMF), which is in its seventh season at the preserve. 

The opera premiered in Milan, Italy in 1832. Its poignant story begins with lovelorn Nemorino, a poor Basque peasant, wooing the elusive Adina, a headstrong wealthy farm owner. When he sees her fall for the dashing Sergeant Belcore, Nemorino resorts to using a magical love potion to win her and the games begin.

The production is directed by Benjamin Spierman and conducted by Anthony LaGruth with an outstanding cast of young artists led by Tod Mulder (Nemorino), Rachel Policar (Adina), Jeremy Moore (Belcore) and Michael O’Hearn (Dulcamara). The opera is accompanied by a full orchestra and chorus.

“We had been focusing recently on the works of Puccini and the Verismo, which we love dearly, but we wanted to move back in time into the Bel Canto (‘beautiful singing’),” said NSMF’s executive director Daniel Klein. “In Elixir, you will get plenty of it. It is charming and beautiful, a love story but not one in which the heroine dies at the end.”

Tickets are $110 per person, $100 for members and can be purchased online or by calling 516-304-5076.

Visit or visit the gatehouse at 127 Middle Neck Rd. in Sands Point, open daily from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. for more information.

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