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This Year’s Bentley Production is Opera ‘Dido and Aeneas’ The iconic myth comes to life March 21-22 in Wilson Concert Hall.

brochure-artdido-600x400 This Year’s Bentley Production is Opera ‘Dido and Aeneas’

The Department of Theater, Dance and Film Studies and the Department of Music at Washington and Lee University are pleased to present their annual Robert O. and Elizabeth M. Bentley production is the opera “Dido and Aeneas.” Performances will take place in Wilson Concert Hall in the Lenfest Center for the Performing Arts on March 21-22 at 8 p.m.

Tickets are required and available online or in person at the Lenfest Box Office.

Written by the English Baroque composer Henry Purcell, “Dido and Aeneas” is based on Virgil’s “Aeneid” and tells the tragic love story between Dido, Queen of Carthage, and the Trojan War hero Aeneas through a variety of musical styles. The opera follows Aeneas as he seeks refuge in Carthage with his comrades after the fall of Troy. Dido welcomes them and falls in love with Aeneas, but a sorcerer and witches plot to sabotage their happiness. Through deception, they convince Aeneas to leave Dido to fulfill his destiny in Italy and despite Dido’s protests, Aeneas departs.

“Dido and Aeneas” is directed and conducted by Scott Williamson, visiting assistant professor of music, and is sure to entertain audiences with memorable music, harmonies, choruses and lively dances. W&L’s production is also site-specific, and instead of a traditional set, the concert hall itself is part of the production. Faculty and staff from the university’s theater and art departments and the IQ Center designed and created busts and columns for the production, which are scattered across the stage to suggest both the building of Carthage and its subsequent destruction.

“’Dido and Aeneas’ is a great first opera for anyone new to the genre,” Williamson said. “Its appeal is immediate, and it requires no background research or cultural homework to be enjoyed.”

Order your tickets online today or call the Lenfest Center box office at 540-458-8000 for ticket purchase information. Box office hours are Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The cost is $18 for adults, $16 for seniors and $14 for W&L faculty and staff; students receive free tickets by showing their student identification.

For a full list of this season’s performances, visit the Lenfest Center’s website.

The Lenfest Center for the Arts, home of the Department of Theater, Dance, and Film Studies and the Department of Music and Department of Art and Art History is a multi-use facility designed and equipped to accommodate a broad spectrum of the performing arts, including theater, musical theater, opera and operetta, choral and band music, dance and performance art in one energizing complex.