Opera program offers 'Marriage of Figaro' Nov. 11, 13

UNL students practice a scene from Mozart's "The Marriage of Figaro."
UNL students practice a scene from Mozart's "The Marriage of Figaro."

The UNL opera program is poised to raise the curtain on one very chaotic wedding day.

Staged by an all-student cast, Mozart's "The Marriage of Figaro" will be presented at 7:30 p.m., Nov. 11 and 3 p.m., Nov. 13 in Kimball Recital Hall. The production is directed by William Shomos and conducted by Tyler White, both professors of music. Laurel Shoemaker, assistant professor of theater and film, is the production designer.

"The Marriage of Figaro" is at times hilarious and often transcendent. Figaro is the Count's valet and is to be married to Susanna, maidservant to the Countess. However, the count has plans for Susanna and is prepared to use his power to prevent the wedding. The plot sets the stage for a battle of wits between servant and master — and a whirlwind of mistaken identities, intrigue and plot twists.

"Figaro" is Mozart's most popular opera. The story was adapted from Beaumarchais' play "Le Mariage de Figaro." Austrian Emperor Joseph II banned the play from Viennese stages on the grounds that the playful trickery of servants outsmarting masters was offensive and subversive. Years later, Napoleon said Beaumarchais' play was the "first stone flung in the French Revolution."

Mozart's "Figaro" premiered in 1786.

The production is sung in Italian with English subtitles. Pre-performance talks will be offered 45 minutes prior to curtain in Westbrook Music Building room 119.

Tickets, available only through the Lied Center for Performing Arts ticket office, are $20 for adults and $10 for students and senior citizens. For more information, call 402-472-4747 or 800-432-3231.

- Mike Edholm, Music