Today@Sam Article

SHSU Opera To Present 'Cosi fan tutte'

July 12, 2017
SHSU Media Contact: Lane Fortenberry


UPDATE: The performance scheduled for Friday, Aug. 11 has been canceled due to a water leak on campus. Performances scheduled for Aug. 12 will continue as planned.

Sam Houston State University opera students will present Mozart’s “Cosi fan tutte,” a comic opera about the pitfalls of love, on Aug. 11-12 at 7:30 p.m., in the Recital Hall of the James and Nancy Gaertner Performing Arts Center.

The production is reimagined after the hit TV show “How I Met Your Mother,” and provides students the opportunity to study an opera in its original language, as well as participate in acting and movement classes over a two-week period.

The production will be sung in Italian with English supertitles.

Since the first summer production of 2012, SHSU opera students have come together nearly every summer to participate in an intensive study of an opera, working in conjunction with SHSU’s voice and opera faculty.

Rebecca Grimes, director of opera, sees the production as a unique growing experience for the opera students.

"Usually opera students are juggling a million different obligations during the academic year, and are fitting the opera production into their already busy schedules,” Grimes said. “Our ‘Raven Summer Opera’ project allows students to focus solely on their singing without the additional distractions of classes and work. We have found the experience invaluable in helping them further develop their skill set as singing actors."

Rachel Harris, freelance stage director and faculty member at Southeastern Louisiana University and Louisiana State University, will be the stage director with Grimes as artistic producer. Students from SELU will join the production, as well.

“Rachel has been a tremendous friend and colleague over the years and we have been looking forward to this collaboration for quite some time,” Grimes said. “I am thrilled for our students getting to work together and learn from each other.”


SHSU voice faculty Nicole Asel, Tony Boutte, Roger Keele, Christopher Michel, and Wesley Lawrence will be joining the production and teaching classes on Italian diction, stage movement and acting.

SHSU Opera has a history of innovative work and national recognition. The ensemble has been a recipient of the American Prize in collegiate opera production in 2014 and 2015. They were also selected for an opera production award from the National Opera Association in 2012.

The ensemble has been invited to compete at the National Opera Association Scenes Competition each year since 2012, and has traveled all over the United States in their endeavors.

For tickets and more information, visit the box office’s website at

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