Opera performance class to present 'Le Nozze di Figaro' May 7-8

April 30, 2010

Luther College students of the spring semester opera performance class will present two performances of Mozart’s “Le Nozze di Figaro” Friday and Saturday, May 7-8, 7:30 p.m. in the Center for Faith and Life main hall.

Tickets are $10. For complete ticket information, telephone the Luther College Box Office, (563) 387-1357, open Monday-Friday, 9-10:30 a.m. and 11 a.m.-3 p.m.; extended hours Thursdays: open until 7 p.m. 

James Griesheimer, Luther associate professor of music, will be presenting a pre-opera lecture both nights at 6:30 p.m. in the Center for Faith and Life recital hall.

“Le Nozze di Figaro” is a comic opera in four acts written in 1786 by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. It is written as a sequel to Gioachino Rossini’s “The Barber of Seville.”

Figaro is engaged to be married to Susanna when problems begin to arise. Figaro is the Count Almaviva’s valet and Susanna is the Countess’s maid. Marcellina demands that Figaro marry her instead because he is unable to pay his depts to her and Count Almaviva lusts after Susanna.

Meanwhile, the Count wishes to kick the Countess’ page, Cherubino, out of the palace for sleeping with the gardner’s daughter, Barbina. It is then discovered through a birthmark of Figaro’s that he is actually the illegitimate son of Marcellina. This puts rest to Marcellina’s claim upon him.

Susanna and the Countess then begin to plot against the Count and decide to change costumes in order to lead the Count to believe that he is flirting with Susanna, which causes the Countess to catch him in his unfaithfulness.

The production is directed by David Judisch, Luther professor of music, and will be sung in English.

The cast of the Friday production includes Tyler Best, Maggie Boland, Brett Epperson, Rachel Grippen, Henry Hammond, Mallory Marlatt, Jill Phillips, Teresa Procter, Anthony Rohr, Nick Sanches, Matt Stump, Laura Val Dietmeyer and Jenny Ward.

The cast of the Saturday production includes Rachel Barkel, Gary Danciu, Ryan Deignan, Drew Hillertz, Brittany McClary, Emily Moore, Zach Owen, Michael Penick, Alex Redding, Aliyah Richling, Heidi Smorstad, Mikki Sodergren and Rebecca Vernon.

The three understudies are Jeff Knutson, Emily Moore and Chad Sonka.

The chamber orchestra for “Le Nozze di Figaro” is composed of 36 Luther students, and the choir is made up of 26 Luther students.