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Loyola's Opera Theater presents Leo Délibes’ Lakmé on Friday and Sunday, January 21 and 23

Loyola press release - January 19, 2005

Loyola University College of Music presents its annual opera production, Leoi Délibes’ Lakmé on Friday, January 21 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, January 23 at 3 p.m. in the Louis J. Roussel Performance Hall, on the second floor of the Communications/Music Complex located at the corner of Calhoun Street and St. Charles Avenue.

The fully-staged opera production will be directed by David Morelock and the music will be conducted by Carol Rausch. The production will include a professional orchestra, chorus, staging on loan from the New Orleans Opera, lighting, make-up, and costumes on loan from the Chicago Lyric Opera.

Tickets are $20 for general admission and $10 for students. For ticket information, call the College of Music box office at 865-3492.

In writing Lakmé, Délibes took the common theme of forbidden love and set it in British-controlled West Bengal. The star-crossed lovers are Lakmé, the sacred daughter of Nilakantha, a fervently anti-British Hindu priest, and Gerald, a lieutenant in the British army. Gerald is intrigued by the legend of the beautiful priestess who no man is allowed to look upon. When he sees her, he is mesmerised and enraptured while Lakmé, is herself drawn ineluctably towards this forbidden love. And as their love develops, Gerald betrays both his English fiancee and his military commission and with a vengeful Nilakantha lurking in the wings, the outcome is always likely to be problematic. Light relief is provided by a quintet of English people who demonstrate the quintessentially British responses towards a culture that attracts and repels them in equal measure.

Morelock was able to draw upon the wealth of vocal talent at Loyola to fill the lead roles. In some cases, certain roles were double-cast to offer performance opportunities to as many students as possible (one student on Friday and the other on Sunday in the same role). Student cast members include:

Gerald: tenors Vernon DiCarlo (Fri.) and David O'Byrne (Sun.)
Frederic: baritones Taylor Miller (Fri.) and William Banks (Sun.)
Nilakantha: bass Justin Hopkins
Lakmé: sopranos Maria Kate Fleming (Fri.) and Cleona Torres (Sun.)
Millika: mezzo-sopranos Megan Scheibal (Fri.) and Brandy Lynn Hawkins (Sun.)
Hadji: tenor Brad Benoit
Ellen: soprano Anne-Marie Frohnmayer
Rose: sopranos Leeli Joshi (Fri.) and Kelly Waguespack (Sun.)
Miss Benson: mezzo-sopranos Jane Craddock (Fri.) and Sarah Stickney (Sun.)
Fortune Teller: Daniel DeShazo
Chinese Merchant: Erik Brown (Fri.) and Bernard Gardner (Sun.)
A Sepoy: Andre Courville (Fri.) and Loren Battieste (Sun.)

Visit Loyola University New Orleans on the World Wide Web at http://music.loyno.edu. For more information, contact Reid Wick at (504) 865-2074, or via e-mail at wick@loyno.edu.