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‘Don Giovanni’ opens IU Opera and Ballet Theater's 2012-13 season ‘with a vengeance’

WHAT: Don Giovanni by W. A. Mozart
WHEN: Sept. 14-15, 21-22 (Friday-Saturday) at 8 p.m.
WHERE: Musical Arts Center, 101 N. Jordan Ave., IU Bloomington campus
TICKETS: Purchase tickets at the Musical Arts Center box office Monday-Friday, 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., by phone at (812) 855-7433 or purchase online at A discounted price, through the MAC box office, is available for all students who wish to attend.
VIDEO STREAMING: Sept. 14-15 only. Featuring live blogging by musicology students.

Aug. 31, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- The 2012-13 Indiana University Opera and Ballet Theater season opens with a vengeance with a reprise of W.A. Mozart's Don Giovanni Sept. 14, 15, 21 and 22 at 8 p.m. in Bloomington's Musical Arts Center.

"Don Giovanni" opens the 2012-13 IU Opera and Ballet Theater season Sept. 14, 15, 21 and 22 at the Musical Arts Center.

Print-Quality Photo

After successes with Lucia di Lammermoor and last season's Albert Herring, guest stage director James Marvel returns to IU Opera to helm this production, using the full resources of the Jacobs School of Music and the impressive Musical Arts Center stage—including recently refurbished wagons and turntables to move the scenery.

"Don Giovanni is one of the greatest operas ever written," said Marvel. "We have worked in great detail to tell a story that accurately reflects the psychological reality of the title character. He is a sociopathic sex addict who kills, seduces and rapes without remorse. And yet, much of the show is a comedy, creating a moral dilemma for the audience. When you find yourself laughing after horrible acts have been committed, you are somehow guilty of the crime yourself. I believe audiences will find this to be the most visceral production of Don Giovanni they have ever encountered."

Don Giovanni—or Don Juan in Spanish—is the original love 'em and leave 'em guy. He devotes his life to seducing then abandoning women but receives his comeuppance in the end, in a highly dramatic fashion, complete with a statue come to life to exact revenge.

Executive Director of Production Timothy Stebbins said, "There is a new ending to this production. Although it is a traditional option and done often, it was not done in our last (2006) Giovanni."

"The death of Don Giovanni is one of the most terrifying scenes in all of opera," said Jacobs Professor Arthur Fagen, who will conduct. "I still feel the incredibly strong emotional charge that comes with that scene every time I do it.

"In Mozart's other operas, we experience a wide range of human emotion. But in Don Giovanni, we experience the supernatural in a way that no composer has matched, either before or since, all within the limited means of a classical orchestra," Fagen added.

Sets and costumes were designed by retired Jacobs professor C. David Higgins, with new lighting designed by Patrick Mero, head of lighting for IU Opera and Ballet Theater.

"There's not a chance you won't enjoy yourself in the theater, if you come to this production," said Marvel.

The Sept. 14-15 performances of Don Giovanni will be live streamed via the IU Music Live! site, kicking off the Jacobs Department of Recording Arts' 2012-13 streaming season.

Visit the production website, with program notes, photos, video and more at