Murder, Love and Laughter on Stage At JBU's Opera Workshop

Siloam Springs, Ark (November 2, 2001) — As the lights dim in JBU’s Jones Recital Hall Nov. 15 -18, vocalists from the university’s Opera Workshop will light up the stage with two thoroughly entertaining operatic works. Evening performances Thursday, Friday and Saturday will begin at 7:30 p.m. The curtain rises for the Sunday matinee at 3 p.m.

The first half of the program is the musical farce “The Telephone” by Gian-Carlo Menotti. Director of the Opera Workshop Dr. Elizabeth Cochran says this energetic two-voice piece has been a curtain raiser for numerous productions and is guaranteed to generate laughs among the audience. The telephone serves as the focal point of the plot. Conflict arises when a woman character’s all-consuming need to talk on the phone makes it difficult for her male suitor to get through to her with his proposal. Frustration gives way to joyful resolution and everyone lives happily ever after.

Kurt Weill’s “Down in the Valley” contains several familiar folk melodies including “The Lonesome Dove,” “The Little Black Train,” “Hop Up, My Ladies,” “Sourwood Mountain” and the title song, “Down in the Valley.” These well-known tunes are skillfully incorporated into the musical score and help carry the story forward. The audience will find the fluid set and scene changes an interesting and integral part of the performance.

JBU’s Opera Workshop is required for all music majors but is open to any students who wish to perform. The Workshop produces programs twice a year. The eight students and one faculty cast have been practicing since September for this full fall production. A scenes production will be held in the spring.

Dr. Cochran says this production promises to be extremely entertaining. “The students are doing an excellent job. Anyone who enjoys folk music will find “Down in the Valley” full of familiar melodies. I encourage everyone to come.”

Tickets may be purchased at the door or by calling 524-7382. Prices are: Adults $7, Senior Citizens $5 and Students $2. The Jones Recital Hall is located in the Cathedral of the Ozarks.

John Brown University is a private university with an enrollment of more than 1,600 students from 46 states and 30 countries. JBU is a member of the Arkansas Independent Colleges and Universities and the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities.