posted January 23, 2012

Hope Voice Students Performing in Grand Rapids Opera Production

Katrina Baker, Heather Benson, Jenna Buck

Three Hope College students are among the cast of Opera Grand Rapids’ forthcoming production of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.”

Freshman Katrina Baker, senior Heather Benson and senior Jenna Buck all have roles in the production, which is taking place on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3 and 4, at 7:30 p.m. at DeVos Performance Hall in Grand Rapids.

A fantasy set in ancient Egypt, the opera centers on Tamino as he seeks to rescue and prove himself worthy of the hand of Pamina, who is said to be held captive by a wicked sorcerer.  Tamino is provided with a golden flute whose powers aid him in the effort.

Baker, who is a music education major from Hudsonville, has been cast as “Third Genie.”  Benson, who is a music performance-voice and music education-vocal dual major from Muskegon, has been cast as “Third Lady.”  Buck, who is a music performance-voice major from Elburn, Ill., has been cast as “Second Genie.”  In addition, Buck’s sister, Michelle Buck, a graduate of Millikin University in Decatur, Ill., has been cast as “First Genie.”

As part of their preparation for the production, the three students have been rehearsing with mentorship by Linda LeFever Dykstra, who is an associate professor of music and chair of the voice division at Hope.  They are among her voice students at the college.

Opera Grand Rapids, formed in 1966, is Michigan’s longest-running professional opera company, and is one of two opera companies in Michigan and one of 138 companies in the United States and Canada.  Each season, Opera Grand Rapids produces three main-stage productions using a regional chorus, the Grand Rapids Symphony and national talent.

Additional information about the production, the availability of tickets and Opera Grand Rapids is available online at www.operagr.com.