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OBU’s Opera Theatre Friday, Saturday

November 16, 2001

Oklahoma Baptist University's Opera Theatre will present the first and second acts of Mozart's comic opera The Marriage of Figaro, Nov. 16 and 17, at 7:30 p.m., in Yarborough Auditorium. A pre-concert lecture by Philip Todd, assistant professor of journalism, and Dr. Kristen Stauffer Todd, assistant professor of music and humanities, in room 203 of Raley Chapel will precede the performance.

Cast members include Stephanie Moring, a senior from Tecumseh, and Aubrey Billingsley, a senior from Norman, as the Countess Almaviva, Christopher Campbell, a senior from Broken Arrow, as Count Almaviva; and Conor Scholes, a senior from Cunningham, Kan., as Figaro. Michelle Thompson, a senior from Fort Worth, Texas, and Laura Norton, a senior from Amarillo, Texas, play Susanna.

Also included in the cast are Julianne Wright, a freshman from Plainview, Texas, and Crystal Morrow, a sophomore from Sand Springs, as Cheribino; Meredith Humphrey, a freshman from Mesquite, Texas, as Marcellena; and Andrew Ridgway, a sophomore from Sophia, Bulgaria, as Con Bartolo. Cody Evans, a junior from Moore, and Aaron Robertson, a junior from Three Rivers, Calif., play Don Basilio and Jared Whitehurst, a sophomore from Tulsa, plays Antonio.

Dr. Jon Gruett, associate professor of music, is the director of the performance, and Dr. Jon Simons, associate professor of church music, is the conductor.

"The Marriage of Figaro is arguably the most perfectly composed opera, due to Mozart's masterful way of unifying text and music," Gruett said. "It has many challenges for young singers and provides many learning benefits for them."

Mozart's opera premiered in 1786 at the Vienna Burg Theater. It was so well received that the next year Mozart collaborated with the librettist, Lorenzo da Ponte, on Don Giovanni. The two worked together again in 1790 on the third of their trilogy, Cosi fan tutte.

Tickets are $3 and will be available at the door. For more information, contact the OBU Division of Music at (405) 878-2305.