A Little Taste of Opera

by Jody Godoy '05

"God sent his Singers upon earth

With songs of sadness and of mirth."

- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

On Monday, November 18, the School of Music’s fourth annual Opera Workshop selected opera scenes in Munson Recital Hall. The well-attended performance was not only entertaining for the audience, but an enjoyable learning experience for the performers.

In September, singers audition for parts fitting their voice types. Between then and the performance, those who are cast take a one-unit class in preparation. According to Stage Director Beverly Crain, the willingness of the students to work hard is important. She cited some of the ways the students' effort pays off, including performance experience, increased confidence in front of an audience, the ability to act and sing, and cooperative skills.

"[Opera Workshop] really prepares any singer interested in going on to graduate school," said Patricia Edwards, the program’s music director.

For some students, like vocal performance major Rino Sasaki ‘03, Opera Workshop was their last performance before their senior recital. "I enjoyed it a lot," said Rino. She and her sister, Tamano, played the wicked stepsisters in an except from an opera based on the tale of Cinderella.

While the opera scenes are performed in the fall, the spring semester features a full opera or large excepts from a single opera. This spring, there will be a performance of the English opera The Old Maid and the Thief. For more information, visit the School of Music's website or call (626) 815-3848.