U of L opera society revisits popular fairy tales


If Halloween is all about celebrating imagination, the University of Lethbridge opera society carries on that theme with “Fairy Tales and magic,” running Nov. 2 and 3 in the University Recital Hall.Alexandra Morgan and Joseph Adams rehearse their part in Pauline Viardot's Cinderella. Photo by Richard Amery
The 30 person company  explores several different interpretations of popular fairy tales including Hansel and Gretel and Cinderella and more.

“The first half of the concert is three different tellings of Cinderella. And though they are all in different languages , we’ll be performing them in English,” said musical director Dr. Blaine Hendsbee.

“We‘ll be preforming Gioachino Rossini from around 1830, Jules Massenet  from 1880 and Pauline Viardot from 1904,” he said.
The three different interpretations will also be performed in three different vocal registers including mezzo and high soprano.

“ After the intermission, we will be performing excerpts from Gilbert and Sullivan’s ‘Lolanthe’  which is all about faeries and scenes from Engelbert Humperdinck’s ‘Hansel and Gretel,”he continued, adding they will not be performing with an orchestra, but will be accompanied by pianists Gregory Knight and Cheryl Emery-Karapita.

“The performances will be in full costumes and with props, but we want to focus on the vocals and the performances,” Hendsbee said.Alexandra Morgan and Joseph Adams rehearse their part in Pauline Viardot's Cinderella. Photo by Richard Amery

“At the end, you will see a special preview of our annual February  collaboration with the Lethbridge Symphony Orchestra — a sneak peek scene of the U of L Opera Workshop’s full production of Candide by Leonard Bernstein,” he continued.

 The “Into the Woods” portion of the concert, also in the second half includes appearances by characters from  various Grimm fairy tales, West Side Story and The Magic Flute.
“We performed the Magic Flute with the Lethbridge Symphony and the full Into the Woods about 15 years ago,” he observed.

Hendsbee said even though some of the subject matter is a little dark, especially the Grimm Fairy tales, the concert is meant for people of all ages.

“People will recognize these stories and characters because they grew up with them,” he said.

Tickets for Fairy Tales and Magic are available at the U of L Box Office Monday – Friday, (403) 329-2616 or online: ulethbridge.ca/tickets. Tickets are $20 regular, $15 seniors and alumni, $12 students.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
Last Updated ( Monday, 29 October 2018 16:54 )