The Eastern Opera Workshop will offer a collection of opera and operetta scenes from major composers on April 30 at 2:30 p.m. in the Concert Hall of Eastern Connecticut State University’s new Fine Arts Instructional Center.
The show is a celebration of three years of opera at Eastern, with seniors and returning alumni featured on the program. Since the first opera course at Eastern in fall 2013, the Eastern Opera Workshop has grown in size and scope; it is is open to music majors and non-majors. The upcoming program includes performances by 16 Eastern students and recent graduates Renae St. John and Melinda DeDominicis.
In addition to end-of-semester performances, students from the opera workshop have represented Eastern at the Council of Public Liberal Arts College’s Conference for Undergraduate Research at Keene State University, at Eastern’s own annual conference on research and creativity, and have shared the magic of opera with students from area elementary schools.
A staple at liberal arts universities and conservatories alike, opera scenes programs (typically using little to no sets, costuming or additional production elements) introduce students to a variety of repertoire and performance styles; help them develop techniques in singing appropriate to the genre; and introduce concepts in scene study and character development.
The program on Saturday includes a diverse selection of opera and operetta scenes, including Mozart’s comic works “The Magic Flute,” “The Marriage of Figaro” and “Cosi fan Tutte” (Women are Like That) and his serious opera, “La Clemenza di Tito.” Alongside these classic Mozart scenes are scenes and duets from the operettas of Johann Strauss, Franz von Suppé, and Gilbert and Sullivan.
The Eastern Opera Workshop is directed by Emily Riggs and accompanied by Eric Ouellette on piano. Like all Eastern music events, this program is free and open to the public. Donations are accepted at the door.