Wednesday, 05 September 2018 13:38

Oswego Opera Theater Celebrates 40 Years With Die Fledermaus (The Bat)

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It is no coincidence: Johann Strauss’s operetta, Die Fledermaus, has delighted audiences for years. So has Oswego Opera Theater delighted its audiences for years.

Strauss’s Die Fledermaus will be performed in Oswego on Saturday, October 13 at 7:30 p.m. in the evening and on Sunday, October 14 at 2:00 in the afternoon. Both productions will be staged in Waterman Theater in the newly remodeled Tyler Hall on the SUNY Oswego campus. Tickets are $30 for adults, $25 for seniors, and $10 for students. On or after October 1st they may be ordered at the Tyler Hall Box Office: 315 312-2141.

This opera premiered on April 5, 1874 at the Theater an der Wien in Vienna and has been part of the regular repertoire of every opera company ever since.

Our Artistic Director, Dr. Juan Francisco LaManna, tells all of us how delighted he and the rest are to present Die Fledermaus to an Oswego audience. “This beautiful operetta, sung in English, has many, many lively melodies and a very funny plot. I am sure our audiences will love hearing some exciting singers who are new to Oswego, many of them professional and well-experienced.” We also welcome back singers and directors who have performed with Oswego Opera Theater before: our beloved and famous director, Benjamin Spierman, and, of course, our Artistic Director, Dr. LaManna.

Every production of Die Fledermaus runs the risk of confusing fun with frivolity. Strauss was an entertainer and as such wanted to give his audiences what they wanted: easy tunes,
rollicking choruses, and propulsive waltzes. But Die Fledermaus has endured as a favorite since 1874 because it blended all the established elements of traditional light opera and took it to another realm of sophistication. Strauss elevated the genre by adding elegance and complexity to the music. So even though it falls back on singing about champagne more than once, it is not all about intoxication, and yet not all fun and games either. Performers have to maneuver vocal challenges, some fancy footwork, and pull off dramatically credible spoken dialogue.

The hijnks of Die Fledermaus are orchestrated by Dr. Falke, who seeks revenge for a previous embarrassment; he had been left drunk on a park bench dressed like a bat and woke up to taunting children. He wants to pay back the perpetuator of the prank, Eisenstein. To this end, Falke invites Eisenstein to a party where he will seduce a mystery masked woman who ends up being Rosalinde, Eisenstein’s own wife. Come see Oswego Opera Theater’s production to see how the plot unravels and then concludes.

Oswego is fortunate to support an opera company No other city of our size can boast having its own well-established opera company. For over forty years, Oswego Opera Theater has been an opera haven for singers young and not so young, and student and professional singers alike.

Mark you calendars for October 13th and 14th. You’ll be glad you did!

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