NAU Opera to present ‘very human’ comedy

NAU Opera will perform L’Elisir d’Amore (The Elixir of Love), a comedy by composer Gaetano Donizetti, at 7:30 p.m. April 1 and 2 and at 2 p.m. April 3 at the Ardrey Memorial Auditorium.

L’Elisir d’AmoreThe opera contains five soloist roles, requiring enormous technique and skill. The roles are double-cast with NAU students. Nemorino will be sung by tenors Andrew Surrena and Ryan McNiff; Adina is sung by sopranos Sandra Flores and Erin Entringer; Belcore, a sergeant, will be sung by baritones Quentin Lee and Daniel Kwast; Dr. Dulcamara, the quack doctor, will be sung by basses Toby Kidd and Scott Ballantine; and Giannetta, the village sweetheart, will be sung by Emily Wells and Danielle Cobb. The production, directed by Nando Schellen, director of NAU Opera, and conducted by Nicholas Ross, director of orchestras at NAU, will feature soloists,a chorus and symphony orchestra.

The story follows Nemorino, a simple man who holds an unrequited love for the beautiful, wealthy Adina, who is not indifferent to him but does not like his humble, subservient approach.

“As a good comedy should be, this opera is very human,” Schellen explained. “In life, we laugh a lot, but we still have lots of problems. A good comedy doesn’t deny that.”

The NAU production has modern staging, set in Italy in an environment reminiscent of Fidenza, near Parma, where Schellen and NAU voice faculty have brought opera students to study and perform for four consecutive summers.

Jennifer Peterson will be in charge of costuming. Ron Erkman is the technical director, Patrick Callaghan is the chorus director and Sandra Flores is the choreographer for this performance.

There will be pre-performance lectures at 6:45 p.m. April 1 and 2 and 1:15 p.m. April 3.

Tickets are $10 for students, faculty and staff, $18 for seniors and $22.50 for general admission. Groups of four or more will receive a discount. Call (928) 523-5661 or (888) 520-7214, visit, or go to the Central Ticketing Office in the NAU Union.