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APSU Opera Theatre and Orchestra to enchant audiences with ‘The Magic Flute’ April 20-21

By: Zoe Farren March 28, 2024


APSU Opera Theatre performs ‘Cendrillon’ by Viardot. | Photo by Madison Casey

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. - Austin Peay State University's Opera Theatre Program is inviting the community to attend its inaugural performance of “The Magic Flute” on April 20 and 21 at the George & Sharon Mabry Concert Hall. Both performances are free and open to the public, thanks to support from the Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts (CECA) at Austin Peay. 

“The Magic Flute” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is written as a singspiel, an 18th-century form of opera containing spoken dialogue and comic tones. The singspiel is split into two acts and follows the simple fairy-tale essence of a damsel in distress and a dashing prince who rescues her. 

Dr. Penelope Shumate, the director of APSU Opera Theatre and an assistant professor of voice, said this spring marks the opera program’s first time performing “The Magic Flute” in full since it was established in 1970.

“Because of the students’ increasing interest, commitment and work ethic, Dr. Gregory Wolynec, director of the APSU Symphony Orchestra, and I were able to select this beloved opera for the students to explore their vocal and dramatic artistries through performance,” Shumate said.

Plenty of vocalists are taking advantage of the opportunity - Shumate said the Opera class voice student enrollment has doubled since her arrival in 2021, growing from nine students to over 20.

Their performance of “The Magic Flute” will feature instrumental backing from the APSU Symphony Orchestra. Wolynec has served as APSU’s director of bands since 2003, helping the orchestra grow into what it has become today.  

To keep up with APSU Opera, please follow the program on Facebook. Performances will also be livestreamed on Facebook for those unable to make it in person. 

About the APSU Department of Music 

The Austin Peay State University Department of Music enjoys a vital presence on campus, in the Clarksville community and in the region. The department is housed in a state-of-the-art facility that offers outstanding practice, rehearsal and studio facilities, along with a nationally recognized concert hall. Visit apsu.edu/music for more information about the programs offered and upcoming concerts.