Area high school students attend a night at the opera

Published 10:50 am Friday, May 4, 2012

Area high school students and chaperones left from Tryon Fine Arts Center in March to travel to Greenville for the opening night of the opera “Il Trovatore” professionally produced at Bob Jones University. The students and adults pictured below met students and chaperones from Landrum and Chapman High School. To find out more about this Arts in Education program at TFAC, call 828-859-8322. (photo submitted)

In March, a group of area high school students were treated to a night at the opera in a program arranged by Tryon Fine Arts Center’s Arts in Education department. Headed by Joe Wray, retired teacher and Arts in Education Committee member, this evening was a revival of a program begun in the 1990s by the late Jack Wheaton, a Tryon resident who strived to provide cultural experiences for local high school students. In honor of Wheaton, and with additional funding from local residents and Main Street Financial Group, TFAC purchased tickets to the opening night of “Il Trovatore” for 25 students and eight chaperones.
Chorus teachers from Chapman, Landrum and Polk County High Schools met with TFAC and identified students from each school who they felt would benefit from this program. Wray, arts in education director Marianne Carruth and retired Metropolitan Opera soprano Mary Meyers traveled to each school to prepare students for the experience. TFAC prepared a booklet for each student giving background information on the opera, the composer Verdi and the opera tradition at Bob Jones University. For more than 75 years Bob Jones University has produced large scale operas with full orchestra and has brought in professional singers from New York to lead the cast.
Lauren Pope, Landrum High School chorus teacher says, “I think this was a wonderful experience for our students. Without this, many of our students would never have the opportunity to experience a high quality opera production.”
– article submitted

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