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Spring Opera Program

Each spring term, Marylhurst's choruses join together to perform a fully staged operatic production, often of a comic bent.

All lead roles are cast from chorus membership whenever possible. Auditions are held in February each year, with rehearsals typically starting in April. Performances occur in early June at the end of Marylhurst's spring term.

Our opera program director is Alistair Donkin of England, world-renowned expert in British comic opera.

Inaugural production: June 2013: H.M.S. Pinafore
June 2014 Production:  The Pirates of Penzance
June 2015 Production:  Iolanthe
June 2016 Production:  Candide


Praise for Iolanthe, 2015
Congratulations on a wonderful production. Right up there with the Tony Awards candidates in my opinion.
--Sharon Hasenjaeger

Just gotta say, that was just brilliant--enjoyed every minute of it.
--Fred Isaacs, J.D.

Congratulations on last evening's superb production of Iolanthe! Musically, dramatically and artistically it was a professional performance. Clear diction on the part of soloists and groups, a pleasing blend of voices during the choral parts of the opera, and the remarkable coordination between orchestra members and singers, insured a most delightful musical evening for a very enthusiastic, appreciative audience.
--Sister Ethna Marie O"Doherty

Just back from a delightful production of Iolanthe at Marylhurst University. What a fine way to spend a Sunday afternoon. The energy of all the cast and sparkle of the wit were just tremendous with great characterization and costumes. Bravo!
--Jerry Pritchard

The incomparable and original Alistair Donkin as creative muse, inspiration, and storyteller...who knew Gilbert & Sullivan could be so 21st century, yet true to its 19th century roots? Bravo to our MU music community who made this Iolanthe a delightful romp of an afternoon!
--Laura Beer

Nice job Marylhurst choir. It was really awesome to see the fruit of all of your hard work pay off. It was also encouraging to see how much growth all of you have gained. Thank you for bringing joy to my week. It was needed.
--Krystal Kotter


Praise for HMS Pinafore, June 2013

I had such fun last night on board the HMS PInafore! What a delight. The cast, chorus, orchestra, and Mr. Donkin were superb! Mr. Donkin's narrative was perfect — and I learned things about the opera that I was unaware of. I did not know there was so much talent at Marylhurst! Please, do another Gilbert and Sullivan soon! I would go to another performance of your Pinafore today if I could.
-- Joan Bierzi

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