The University of Mississippi Opera Theatre Ensemble is offering an opportunity to experience Shakespeare in a unique way with its production of “Brush Up Your Shakespeare: The Bard in Opera and Musical Theatre.”
“This is a chance for those who love Shakespeare to hear his words expressed through the extra-textual power of music and for those who are not familiar with his works to experience them in a variety of ways,” said Julia Aubrey, director of Opera Theatre.
The show opens at 8 p.m. Friday (Oct. 30) in Meek Hall Auditorium, with encore performances set for 8 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $11 for adults, $10 for children and seniors, and $9 for UM students with a valid ID. They are available in the UM Box Office in the Student Union or by calling 662-915-7411.
The performance features scenes from “Kiss Me Kate,” “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” “West Side Story,” “Macbeth (Verdi),” “Romeo et Juliette (Gounod),” “A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Britten),” “The Merry Wives of Windsor (Nicolai)” and “Beatrice et Benedict (Berlioz).”
Tiffany Gammell, music graduate student from Olive Branch, is Aubrey’s graduate assistant and has been working on the show with her.
“This show is a really cool opportunity for students who are in music appreciation classes or if they’re interested in opera,” Gammell said. “Even if you don’t know anything about opera, this show is a great introduction to it. It’s educational and it’s also entertaining.”
Aubrey believes the show will be a unique experience.
“This is exceptionally beautiful music with wonderful text sung by very talented students,” she said. “We have rented professional costumes for each scene, the lighting design was created specifically for the production and we have an exciting instrumental group to support the singers. It’s fun, funny, moving, and you will find you can relate to Shakespeare in a novel way.”