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Fargo-Moorhead Opera Opens Season with Funny Farce “Die Fledermaus”

The Fargo-Moorhead Opera is opening its season with a big ol’ party with plenty of laughs to boot. (And champagne. Lots of champagne.)

At 7:30 p.m. Friday and 2 p.m. Sunday, the F-M Opera performs Johan Strauss Junior’s farcical “Die Fledermaus” at NDSU Festival Concert Hall.

Eisenstein (Christopher Burchett) and Falke (Colin Levin) reminisce about how Eisenstein earned his nickname “the bat” (which is “die fledermaus” in German).

In this funny operetta, elaborate plots unravel and romantic entanglements run astray when the charming Dr. von Eisenstein drunkenly tries to woo a mysterious Hungarian countess at Prince Orlovsky’s masked ball. Eisenstein, who is no stranger to alcohol-induced escapades, is unaware that the masked “countess” is actually his wife, Rosalinde, attempting to catch him in the act.

Eisenstein (left) doesn’t know that the Hungarian countess he’s trying to woo is actually his wife, Rosalinde (Elizabeth Jackson).

The more the champagne flows, the more hilarity ensues.

Shirley Leiphon, the relationship director of the F-M Opera, says “Die Fledermaus” is a fun production because it features a cast that has a “scent of Fargo.”

With the exception of one singer, the rest of the cast has been involved with the F-M Opera in the past (read the cast list here). Four of the singers are former Young Artists in the F-M Opera’s Gate City Bank Young Artists program, now in its 5th year.

Nicholas DeMeo (Alfred), Kate Jackman (Prince Orlovsky) and Elizabeth Lewis (Rosalinde) were in the program just last year. Colin Levin, who plays the manipulative jokester Falke, was a Young Artist in 2014.

Former Young Artist Kate Jackman plays Prince Orlovsky (right).

I had the privilege of going to the dress rehearsal on Wednesday night, expecting to stay for only 20 minutes to get a few photos, but ended up staying for over an hour because the show was so entertaining! My cheeks hurt and my stomach was sore from laughing. This is definitely a show you won’t want to miss!

We also had Shirley on this week’s Metro Arts Scene on KFGO — listen to the podcast to hear more about this party of a production.

Tickets to “Die Fledermaus” are available at fmopera.org or by calling 701-239-4558.



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