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Pre-July 2009 Press Archives

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4/23/2007 Linfield College presents annual operetta

McMINNVILLE - A vibrant array of costumes, characters, singing and acting will fill the stage during “The Merry Widow,” an operetta by German composer Franz Lehar, presented by the Linfield College Opera Theater and Gallery Theater.

Six shows will be presented at the Gallery Theater in McMinnville. Performances are May 3-5 and 10-12 at 8 p.m.

The operetta is the culmination of the Linfield Opera Theater, a one-credit course offered each spring to give students operatic experience. Students not in the class can also perform in the production. This is the 15th production of the workshop, directed by Gwen Leonard, professor of music at Linfield.

In this sentimental romantic drama, a young widow, played by Linda Hayes, a McMinnville community member, inherits a large fortune from her deceased husband and is then courted by a multitude of men, ranging from princes to paupers.

“This show has energetic singing and dancing, a poignant storyline and flashy costumes,” said Leonard. “It is fast-paced and entertaining.”

The lead actors in the production are junior Andrew Pohl; sophomores Kaitlin Leary, Brittney Hoskisson and Sam Dinsmore; and freshmen Douglas Hooker, Anne Muehleck, Sara Vonn and Natalie Lindsey. Chorus members include freshman Melissa Davaz and sophomores Amy Shoemaker and Jeff Hayes.

Community members in lead roles are Jim Diamond, Linfield professor of chemistry; Carolyn McCloskey, Linfield adjunct professor; Cody Eason, John Paul Bierly and Pat Sanderlin.

The Linfield-Gallery collaboration combines expertise from both organizations. Gallery is providing sets and costumes while Linfield provides the musicians and musical direction.

The cast is learning from each other as opening day approaches, Leonard said.

“As we get closer to the production date and spend more time with each other, we have bonded while trying to do the best production we can,” said Leonard.

The Linfield College Opera Theater gives students an opportunity to combine singing and acting ability in the context of studying repertoire from the best of musical theatre. The workshop was established in 1993 when student singers collaborated with the Linfield Chamber Orchestra in a performance of Pergolesi's “la Serva Padrona.”

Tickets are $15 for general admission and $13 for students and seniors. Family and group rates are available. Tickets may be purchased at the Gallery Theater box office or reserved by phone at 503-472-2227.

For more information, call the Linfield Music Department at 503-883-2275.