Opera Review at MSU

Italian music by Montclair State’s School of Music flooded the Alexander Kasser Theater this past weekend.

Montclair State shows off their musical talent of Opera with Symphony Orchestra!

Photo courtesy of Peak Performances

The Montclair State University Opera and Symphony Orchestra came together on April 30 and May 1 for one exclusive weekend of Italian operatic works, known as the Italian Double Bill. Hundreds of students, faculty and family members united for two consecutive nights of quality Italian music-making at the Alexander Kasser Theater where audiences were amazed by students’ wide-ranging vocal notes and musical talent.

This concert, partnered with Montclair State’s Coccia Institute for the Italian Experience in America, featured two “rarely-performed short masterworks from the Italian repertory: Handel’s pasticcio Lungi da te (Far from You) and Donizetti’s one-act farce Il giovedi grasso (Fat Thursday).” The show explored the theme of love and its consequences, closely related to an earlier Italian performance that was put on at MSU called Delirio Amoroso – Erotic Madness: Love and its Consequences.

The show was conducted by Jeffery Gall, an American counter-tenor, professor and coordinator of MSU’s vocal program. Gall studied music at the Yale School of Music and earned degrees in Slavic languages from Princeton and Yale University.

“Professor Gall is such a character,” said one of Gall’s school of music students at Montclair State. “I have come to love him and learn from him and understand that he is all about the students and their progress. He’s a good person and truly hilarious if you get his unique brand of dry humor.”

Gall’s expertise is notable thorough his passion and experience with music throughout his lifetime. He began his career nearly 40 years ago with music ensembles and solos in contemporary opera. He has made appearances performing all throughout the United States and Europe. As a conductor, he previously taught at Harvard University and the Chicago Musical College of Roosevelt University before making his way to Montclair.

The overall performance of the MSU Opera with MSU Symphony Orchestra left the audience longing for more. Each and every one of the performers brought their own style and vocals to the stage in these difficult and unique Italian operatic and symphonic pieces of work. They evidently seemed to please the audiences as they received long-lasting applause and a standing ovation at the finale of the performance. Although it seemed to have been quite a challenge, the students of Montclair State University’s School of Music executed the performance very well and hope to continue to draw in such amazing crowds in the future.

Check out the Peak Performances website for more information on what’s coming up in the area. You don’t want to miss out! Go to peakperfs.org.

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