This past spring, a group of Franklin students experienced performances at one of the most famous opera houses in the world: the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Italy, and the LAC Lugano Arte e Cultura, in Lugano.

As part of Professor Hrisanta Trebici-Marin’s “History of Music” class, students attended a pre-dress rehearsal of the opera “Orphée et Euridice”, by Christoph Willibald Gluck, at the Teatro alla Scala. As noted by Professor Trebici-Marin “The main soloist was world famous tenor Juan Diego Flores. This type of rehearsal is normally closed to the public. It was only through the generosity of Dr. Alexander Perreira, General Manager of the theater, that we have been privileged to witness such a unique performance.”

According to Varaidzo Ndebele ’18 “the most interesting part of attending the pre dress rehearsal for me was the juxtaposition of the performers in full costume, suddenly breaking out of character to ask the director a question. It added to the magic of the experience; seeing the performers behave as regular people made me feel as if we had more in common than I had previously thought, and that opera as a whole, is a much more accessible art form than people realize. Seeing it live is always more engaging of an experience than watching a broadcast: the acoustics, the atmosphere and the setting all contribute to the uniqueness of the experience. There is nothing quite like it."

Additionally, students from a number of different Franklin classes could experience the Mozart Orchestra concert conducted by Bernard Haitink at the LAC. According to Franklin’s Associate Professor of History, Marcus Pyka, Haitink “is one of the greatest conductors of our time, and a rare opportunity, as he is 89 years old.” Another group of FUS students attended the ballet “Cendrillon” by Prokofiev, presented by the Malandain Ballet Company-Biarritz, also at the LAC.