‘An American Tryptic’ Hits the Stage

Students participating in this year’s opera workshop are gearing up for their performance of “An American Tryptic,” opening this weekend.

The University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Opera Workshop is a class available to students through vocal audition.  It is most commonly taken by music majors, though anyone may audition.

This year the opera workshop is performing what they call “An American Tryptic.”  It consists of three short American operas: “A Hand of Bridge” by Samuel Barber, “The Old Maid and the Thief” by Gian Carlo Menotti, and “The Telephone” also by Menotti.

The Opera Workshop is offered every spring semester, under the artistic direction of Dr. Matthew Markham, a member of the music faculty at UWSP.

This year, the three operas are being performed as an enactment of a live radio broadcast on the stage because “The Old Maid and the Thief” was originally created for radio.

Markham describes the course as a chance for students to apply all of the vocal technique they have learned in a performance setting.

“It is an assimilation of everything we do,” Markham said.

For students, the opera workshop is a chance to do what they love in the public eye of the university and community.

“I just love being a character and acting while I’m singing,” said Kirstin Stangel, voice major.

The opera workshop also gives students and the community an opportunity to see opera in a more identifiable way.

“Some of the older operas can be really over the top. It seems like the stuff we are doing here is more raw and gritty and would probably be more easily relatable for audience members,” said Ian Johnson, vocal performance major.

Markham believes that opera as an art has something for everyone.

“I think you can laugh, cry, be intrigued or even be frightened,” Markham said.

“An American Tryptic” will be performed in Michelson Hall in the Noel Fine Arts Center on Apr. 4 and 5 at 7:30 p.m.

Aaron Voeks



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