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Vocal workshop plans comic operetta performance

Arts Nov 30, 2021
Two students in a living room set for an opera
Two students in a living room set for an opera

KOKOMO, Ind. – Enjoy a musical tale of payback for a practical joke, as Indiana University Kokomo’s vocal performance workshop presents Die Fledermaus (The Bat) in Kresge Auditorium.

The free performances are at 7 p.m. Friday, December 3, and 3 p.m. Sunday, December 5.

Cast member Dezi Dagey noted the show is performed in English, making it more accessible to music lovers not as familiar with opera.

“It is really entertaining and really funny,” the Tipton resident said. “There are a lot of hidden jokes throughout the whole show that people will appreciate.”

Wendy Grice, senior lecturer in music, coached performances, and managed costumes for the cast of nine students, two alumni, and one faculty member. The production is part of an opera workshop class led by adjunct Garry Grice, also stage director.

“The unusual part about this production, and the stretch for the students, is the music,” she said. “It’s much more difficult than they are used to, but they love it. They have worked very hard on this show.”

Gavin Dirks of Westfield leads the cast as Eisenstein, whose practical joke at a party three years earlier sets off the action in the operetta. Dirks agreed the music was challenging.

“I was very nervous, because it’s higher than what I’ve sung before,” he said. “It’s been a good experience for me to push myself musically and theatrically, and get to know new people.”

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