September 20, 2017  

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One-Night-Only Spectacular Musical Performance Set for April 11 at USM

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The acclaimed musical "Rigoletto" will be staged at USM's Mannoni Performing Arts Center on April 11.

The Southern Opera and Musical Theatre Company, in cooperation with Mississippi Opera, presents Verdi’s "Rigoletto" for one-night-only Tuesday, April 11 at 7:30 p.m. in the Mannoni Performing Arts Center Auditorium on The University of Southern Mississippi Hattiesburg campus.

The production features 50 stunning voices, an immense set, and glorious costumes. The performance is accompanied by members of Southern Miss Symphony Orchestra with Dr. Jay Dean on the podium.

The production is guest directed by Corinne Hayes. A dynamic new voice on the operatic scene, she has directed at Central City Opera, Opera North, Crested Butte Music Festival, the Harmonia School of Music and Art, and Florida State.

In 2010, Hayes was honored by the National Opera Association (Production Competition, First Place) for her “stark, yet stylish” staging of The Rape of Lucretia for Florida State Opera. She has worked as an assistant director for David Gately, Ken Cazan, James Marvel, Eric Einhorn among others, at companies such as Wolf Trap Opera, Central City Opera, Washington National Opera, Indiana University, and Opera Santa Barbara.

In 2011, Hayes served as Associate Director on Suor Angelica/Gianni Schicchi, working closely with James Marvel to shape this critically-acclaimed production with Indiana University.  

“We are thrilled to have her working with our student and professional singing actors,” said Dean. “They are having a wonderful experience that will translate to an incredible performance for our audiences.”

The story on which Rigoletto is based, was written by Victor Hugo who also penned Les Misérables and The Hunchback of Notre Dame. One of Verdi’s masterpieces, this tragedy revolves around the lascivious Duke of Mantua, his hunch-backed court jester Rigoletto, and Rigoletto's beautiful daughter Gilda.

In the story a curse is placed on both the Duke and Rigoletto by a courtier whose daughter had been seduced by the Duke with Rigoletto's encouragement. The curse later comes to fruition when Gilda falls in love with the Duke and is mistakenly killed by an assassin hired by her own father.

Tickets are available through Southern Miss Ticket Office; 800.844.8425, 601.266.5418 or www.southernmisstickets.com. Students with I.D. are free. For more information, please contact the Symphony and Opera and Musical Theatre office at 601.266.4001