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ASU’s Lyric Opera Theatre unveils its 2015–16 season

The ASU Lyric Opera Theatre production of "Anything Goes" (2014-15 season).

Photo by Tim Trumble

July 22, 2015

ASU School of Music’s Lyric Opera Theatre (LOT) returns to the stage for an exciting 2015–16 season. The season line-up features two musicals, two operas and one student workshop production. Audiences will laugh, cry and sing along with this diverse collection of performances, featuring a selection of well-known classics and some refreshingly new shows too.

Book by George Furth
Music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Stage Director: Toby Yatso
Music Director: Brian DeMaris
Choreography: Molly Lajoie
Performances: Sept. 25 & 26; Oct. 2 & 3 at 7:30 p.m.; Sept. 27 & Oct. 4 at 2 p.m.

Sondheim’s game-changing musical, largely regarded as a trailblazer of the dark-comedy, modern-musical genre, is a sophisticated and honest look at modern adult relationships. It is the winner of 7 TONY Awards, including Best Musical, Best Score, Best Lyrics and Best Book. This show is rated PG-13.

Guadalupe: The Opera
Music composed by James DeMars
Libretto by James DeMars, Robert Esteva Doyle and Graham Whitehead
Sung in English and Spanish with English supertitles
Stage Director: Graham Whitehead
Music Director: William Reber
Choreographer: Lauren Margison
Performances: Nov. 19, 20, 21 at 7:30 p.m.; Nov. 22 at 2 p.m.

This is the world premiere of “Guadalupe: The Opera,” composed by ASU School of Music Professor and Arizona Governor’s Arts Award winner James DeMars. The story chronicles the desperation of the native inhabitants of Mexico in 1531, who are caught in a violent clash between two cultures, and the heroic struggle of Juan Diego to achieve peace for his people through the transformation of Mother Earth to Mother Mary. Lyric arias and powerful choruses are supported by an orchestra including Native American artists R. Carlos Nakai and Xavier Yxayotl. This opera contains mature themes and may not be appropriate for young children.

L’elisir d’amore (The Elixir of Love)
Composed by Gaetano Donizetti
Libretto by Felice Romani
Sung in Italian with English supertitles
Stage Director: Dale Dreyfoos
Music Director: Brian DeMaris
Choreographer: Lynette Kidman
Performances: Feb. 25, 26, 27 at 7:30 p.m.; Feb. 28 at 2 p.m.

“L'elisir d'amore” is one of the most frequently performed of all Donizetti’s operas. It combines a touching love story and hilarious comedy with beautiful music, including the much-loved aria “Una furtiva lagrima.” The opera’s premiere in Milan in 1832 was a triumph and secured Donizetti’s place as one of the leading Italian opera composers of his day. This opera is appropriate for all ages.

The Drowsy Chaperone
Music and lyrics by Lisa Lambert and Greg Morrison
Book by Bob Martin and Don McKellar
Stage Director: Toby Yatso
Music Supervisor: Brian DeMaris
Music Director: Brent Mauldin
Performances: April 15, 16, 21, 23 at 7:30 p.m.; April 17 & 24 at 2 p.m.

When a die-hard theatre fan plays his favorite cast album, the characters come to life in this hilarious musical farce. Winner of 5 TONY Awards (including Best Book and Best Original Score), “The Drowsy Chaperone” is a loving send-up of the Jazz age musical, featuring one show-stopping song and dance number after another. Hailed by New York Magazine as “The Perfect Broadway Musical,” this masterful meta-musical pokes fun at all the tropes that characterize the musical theatre genre. This show is appropriate for all ages.

Student Workshop Production:

Book, music and lyrics by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey
Music Director: Miles Plant
Faculty Advisor: Toby Yatso
Performances: Jan. 15 at 7:30 p.m.; Jan. 16 at 2 & 7:30 p.m.; Jan. 17 at 2 p.m.
All tickets for the Student Workshop are $8.00

Here is Rydell High’s senior class of 1959: duck-tailed, hot-rodding “Burger Palace Boys” and their gum-snapping, hip-shaking “Pink Ladies” in bobby sox and pedal pushers, evoking the look and sound of the 1950s in this rollicking musical. Head “greaser” Danny Zuko and new (good) girl Sandy Dumbrowski try to relive the high romance of their “Summer Nights” as the rest of the gang sings and dances its way through such songs as “Greased Lightnin’,” “It’s Raining on Prom Night,” and “Alone at the Drive-In Movie,” recalling the music of Buddy Holly, Little Richard and Elvis Presley that became the soundtrack of a generation. An eight-year run on Broadway and two subsequent revivals, along with innumerable school and community productions, place “Grease” among the world’s most popular musicals. This show is appropriate for all ages.

LOT also puts on several special auxiliary workshop performances throughout the year. These performances, which are the end-of-the semester projects of students in all musical theatre and opera classes, are a compilation of Broadway scenes and songs and opera scenes. All workshop performances are free of charge.

Fall Music Theatre Showcase 
Free admission
Monday, Nov. 30 - 7 p.m.
Evelyn Smith Music Theatre

Spring Music Theatre Showcase
Free admission
Monday, April 25 - 7 p.m.
Evelyn Smith Music Theatre

Opera Scenes Performance
Free admission
Saturday, April 30 - 7:30 p.m.
Classroom - EB2-094

Ticket prices: $11 – First Friday, $21 – Adult (for all dates except First Friday), $15 – Faculty, Staff, Alumni, $12 – Senior, $10 – Group (minimum of 10 tickets), $8 – Student.

Tickets are on sale as of July 15 for return package buyers and Aug. 1 for the general public. Save 25 percent by ordering tickets to three or more Herberger Institute events per person by Sept. 15. A $2 handling fee applies to all orders, and a web per ticket purchase fee will apply.

Summer box office hours are Monday – Thursday, 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. and 1:30–4:30 p.m.

To order tickets, call the Herberger Institute Box Office at 480.965.6447 or visit

Public Contact: 
Heather Beaman
School of Music Communications Liaison

Media Contact:
Heather Beaman
School of Music Communications Liaison