Arts Council bringing opera to the community

OJ Stapleton Editor

October 18, 2013

The Russellville Arts Council is planning to expose students in the Russellville Independent school system to something new - opera.

Four members of the deGraffenried Chorale will be performing a children’s opera version of “Little Red Riding Hood” today for elementary and middle school students in Russellville.

“We’ve been trying to have different activities and we decided this time to take the arts to the kids,” said Larry Vaught of the Arts Council. “So we’re having a performance on Friday at Stevenson Elementary and then later in the day at the high school for the middle school kids.”

And this weekend, the group will be having an open performance that anyone in the community can enjoy. The community show will be Saturday at 3 p.m. in the deGraffenried Auditorium at 3 p.m. Admission will be $5 at the door.

“We also wanted to do this and give anyone an opportunity to come and see it,” Vaught said.

The group of singers that will be performing include Mary Beth Dowden, Iris Perez, Joshua Baldwin and Frank Walton, who are all members of the deGraffenried Chorale. The performance will also include the flute playing of Hannah Oliver.

“We have such wonderful talent in the deGraffenried Chorale and they have such a passion for singing - especially opera,” Vaught said. “And we just wanted to give them a chance to unleash that passion.”

The group began practicing for the performance in July and have really ramped up their preparations in the past few weeks.

“Kids are going to be excited to see this show,” Vaught said. “They know the classic story, but there’s a lot of twists and turns that will keep their interest and also makes this something that will amuse the parents as well.”

Most importantly, it is a chance to expose children to the arts through a style that they normally wouldn’t get to experience.

“This will be a great experience to because it lets children learn about makeup and music and drama - all those elements of the arts come together in opera,” Vaught said. “We’re glad that we can share it with all the children and adults of Logan County.”

For more information you can call the Arts Center at 726-1303 or Vaught at 977-5823.