Muhlenberg’s Opera Workshop performs Hansel and Gretel

News Image Performances of Hansel and Gretel by Engelbert Humperdinck will be held on April 15 and April 16 at 8:00 p.m. in Egner Memorial Chapel. Admission is free with general seating.

 Monday, April 11, 2016 09:28 AM

Hansel and Gretel is Humperdinck’s most successful work. It premiered in Weimar in 1893 under the baton of Richard Strauss. The opera was chosen for their first live radio broadcasts by both The Royal Opera House in London in 1923 and The Metropolitan Opera in 1931.

Opera Workshop is an opportunity for students to explore the multifaceted elements of opera and is intended to stretch students creatively and occasionally beyond their comfort zones. Students have the opportunity to work as conductors and choreographers and perform various production roles.

Muhlenberg’s adaptation works within the constraints of a workshop space, time and budget and is accompanied by on a single piano. Elena Nahrmann arranged and plays The Overture played and arranged on harp is an abridgement of the full overture to set the scene. The production increases the role of the ensemble in reprising the “Prayer” in Act II with an angel choir and abridges the ballet sequences that follow it in the original score.

This project is supported by Muhlenberg’s voice faculty, coordinated by Michael Schnack, lecturer of music, and Muhlenberg’s music department, chaired by Paul Murphy, associate professor of music. Accompanist Erin Petrella; rehearsal accompanist MJ Hodge; choreographer Cat Chythlook; assistant director Michaela Barczak help lead the production. Jessica Cody ’15 designed the program cover and poster, while the Domeyer family provided the majority of the costumes, and the Balsamo and Holtzman Families assisted with materials and design of the storybook set.

, director of Opera Workshop, has had a versatile career in music as a performer and teacher. Hanegraaf joined the Muhlenberg College Faculty in January of 2010, where she teaches students with her extensive background in instrumental & choral education and voice performance.

Founded in 1848, Muhlenberg is a highly selective, private, four-year residential college located in Allentown, Pa., approximately 90 miles west of New York City. With an undergraduate enrollment of approximately 2200 students, Muhlenberg College is dedicated to shaping creative, compassionate, collaborative leaders through rigorous academic programs in the arts, sciences, business, education and public health. A member of the Centennial Conference, Muhlenberg competes in 22 varsity sports. Muhlenberg is affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.