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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    ‘Il Matrimonio’ a light intro to opera

    Rodney Haas / Arizona Daily Wildcat

The cast of the upcoming opera Il Matrimonio Segreto (The Secret Marriage) which goes on Thursday through Saturday in Crowder Hall.
    Rodney Haas
    Rodney Haas / Arizona Daily Wildcat The cast of the upcoming opera “Il Matrimonio Segreto” (The Secret Marriage) which goes on Thursday through Saturday in Crowder Hall.

    Combine true love, a secret marriage, an overbearing father, a lascivious Count and plenty of laughs, and what do you get?

    Hint: It’s not a new Bravo reality show, “”The Real Housewives of Transylvania.””

    The UA Opera Theater will perform Domenico Cimarosa’s “”Il Matrimonio Segreto,”” accompanied by the Arizona Symphony Orchestra, from Thursday to Sunday. The piece isn’t just for opera lovers, the cast promises. Its humorous plot and the performers’ ability to bring meaning to the script make it a perfect first step for those apprehensive about the genre.

    “”It’s actually really funny,”” said Erika Burkhart, a vocal performance senior who plays Carolina. “”It’s staged in such a way that you definitely get the comedy.””

    Other cast members stressed the opera’s humor and clarity, urging audience members not to fear the fact that it’s sung in Italian.

    “”The music in the show does a great job of making the emotional content really clear,”” said Alan Stevens, a first-year doctoral candidate in choral conducting, who plays Paolino.

    Seth Kershisnik, a second-year master’s candidate in vocal performance, added, “”The (performers) are doing a very good job of doing physical things to bring out the universal comedy to replace delivery with English words.”” Kershisnik plays the Count, a role he calls “”elegant and over the top, with a splash of eccentricity.””

    The opera tells the story of two young lovers, Paolino and Carolina, who marry secretly against their parents’ wishes. Carolina has the unpleasant task of telling her family about the marriage. The plot thickens when the wealthy Count, who had been betrothed to Carolina’s sister Elisetta, visits the family and falls for Carolina instead.

    Two complete casts will trade performances during the opera’s run. One notable feature of the show is Asleif Willmer, who plays Carolina in one of the casts. Willmer is a sophomore in a group of mostly seniors and graduate students and is singing a leading role.

    “”It’s unusual for a person at this stage of development to be singing a leading role,”” said Charles Roe, a music professor and the opera’s director.

    For opera novices and old hats alike, “”Il Matrimonio Segreto”” promises to be a light, lovely evening of entertainment.

    To those still a little skittish, Stevens offers this reassurance: “”It’s not the woman screaming in the hat with horns.””

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