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Spirit of Acadiana: Opera returns to Lafayette

UL Students Perform 'Perukes, Panniers and Pasatieri' This Weekend
Posted at 5:03 PM, Oct 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-13 18:08:54-04

LAFAYETTE, La. — This Friday on the stage of Burke-Hawthorne Hall at UL Lafayette, an amazing operatic production. It's called "Perukes, Panniers & Pasatieri". Regardless of how you you pronounce those words, it's sure to be amazing.

"This is a peruke, or a wig of the period, 18th-century during which the opera takes place," says director Shawn Roy as he points to the costume worn by soprano Madison Russell. "A pannier is actually the undergarment;kind of the Marie Antoinette look of the hip; and pasatieri is a composer."

Live opera is back in Acadiana— finally— with Perukes, Panniers and Pasatieri directed by Roy and produced by the UL Opera Theatre. It's one of the most-performed operas in the United States, says Roy, and they've come up with a way to bridge any potential cultural gaps.

"Act 1 is actually all Italian; but we have this screen up here which has super-titles, so it will be translated for you," explains Roy, "and the opera is in English, so you should be able to understand what they're saying."

It's a relatively small cast of seven UL students who have joined voices and put on elaborate costumes to welcome music lovers, both veteran opera fans and novices, too.

"We rely on each other so heavily for entrances, musical things, and all those things," smiles sophomore Anthony Voiers. "We rely on each other to play off each other's emotions and where we're acting. Without one person, it's all off."

"You'll definitely see how close we are in this cast," adds Russell. "The show is a comedy, and it's something that people will enjoy and relate to."

*Tickets will be available at the door at UL's Burke-Hawthorne Hall Theatre. Performances will take place October 15th-17th.

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