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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    “Modern opera to test student voices, emotion”

    The UA School of Music is bringing highbrow comedy to Tucson this Friday and Sunday with the modern opera “”Albert Herring”” by Benjamin Britten, performed by The University of Arizona Opera Theater with the Arizona Symphony Chamber Ensemble.  

    The chamber opera, an opera that uses a chamber ensemble instead of a full symphony, describes the antics of an English town in search of morality in anticipation for the May Day festival.

    The production, according to Director of Opera Theater Charles Roe, has cost between $30,000-$40,000. This performance is a highly-anticipated event in the UA School of Music, and has been in the workings since school started in August.

    It is a chance for students “”to see what kind of skills their fellow students have developed,”” Roe said.

    “”Albert Herring”” is a traditional two-and-a-half hour production with one intermission, but the modern opera, composed in 1947, is different from typical opera fare.

    “”The melodies don’t always sound really pretty to sing or are easy to learn,”” Roe said. “”But it does express the emotions of the characters.””

    Roe said students have spent a great deal of time getting to know their characters and practicing this difficult production.

    The opera is sung in English and is known for its humorous wording, which can be read on the supertitles that will be provided for the audience.

    “”You can hear some beautiful human voices,”” Roe said. “”It really shows how dedicated our students are.””

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