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Bethel College to present "The Bartered Bride"

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The Bethel College theater and music departments will present the three-act comedic opera "The Bartered Bride" by Bedrich Smetana. Performances are set for 8 p.m. on March 4, 7:30 p.m. on March 5 and 6 in Krehbiel Auditorium in the Fine Arts Center on the North Newton campus. The opera debuted in Prague in 1866. Through music echoing Czech dance melodies, "The Bartered Bride" tells the story of a village romance in Bohemia. The plot follows the twists and turns of a young couple’s attempts to thwart the intentions of the village matchmaker.

"The melodies are beautiful, there is much comedy and the singing will enthrall," director of opera Kathryn Kasper said.

Kasper also noted that Bethel College presented "The Bartered Bride" in 1960 and 1978. The 1960 production marked the first time the college presented an opera with orchestral accompaniment.

The cast includes seniors Micah Bales, Wichita, as Jenik; Emily Claassen, Beatrice, Neb., as Ludmila; Miranda Crile, Mount Pleasant, Iowa, as Esmeralda; Jonathan Mullinix, Wichita, as Director of the strolling circus; and Jarod Waltner, Freeman, S.D., as Vasek; juniors Ben Gundy, Bluffton, Ohio, as Krusina; and Greta Steingard, Henderson, Neb., as Marie; and freshmen Chelsea Hahn, North Newton, as Indian; Jeff Janzen, Fresno, Calif., as Micha; Ben Kliewer, Buhler, as Kecal; and Caitlin Welch, Lawrence, as Hata.

Chorus members are seniors Nathan Evan Gillis, Colorado Springs, Colo.; David Hasegawa, Sanger, Calif.; and Samuel Schrag, Wichita; junior David Nance, Dallas, Texas; sophomore Ryan Shephard, Fort Worth, Texas; and freshmen Aislinn Conrad, Hillsboro; Adrianne Gerek, Onaga, Kelsey Goertzen, Henderson, Neb.; Heidi Johnson, Topeka; Joel Jerod Maple, Umatilla, Fla.; Darren Christopher Ramsey, Wichita; Malcolm Anderson Rhymer, Jr., West Palm Beach, Fla.; Dana Steingard, Henderson, Neb.; and Stephanie Stivers, Maize.

Dancers are seniors Sara O. Flaming, Newton; and Jana Petersheim, Morgantown, Pa.; juniors Leah Larson, Clay Center; Spencer Sward, Wichita; Anastassia Tikhonova, Moscow, Russia; and Anna Weaverdyck, Ann Arbor, Mich.; sophomores Paula Jayne Regier, Beatrice, Neb.; and Janelle Renee Steiner, Albany, Ore.; and freshman Heather Linscheid, Fresno, Calif.

The Bethel College Sinfonia, conducted by musical director Christopher Koch, assistant professor of music, will accompany the singers.

Stage director for the opera is Brent Noel, assistant professor of communication arts. Tiffany Jefferson is choreographer, and Alberto Martinez is the scene designer.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for students and senior citizens and $6 for children ages 3-12. For tickets, call Thresher Bookstore at (316) 284-5281.

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