Viterbo University music students will perform a pair of contrasting short operas by Gian Carlo Menotti this weekend at the Weber Center for the Performing Arts.

“The Medium” tells the story of Madame Flora, her daughter and a mute servant boy in two acts. During a bogus séance, the intoxicated Madame Flora feels a phantom hand around her throat, and subsequent events lead to a shocking conclusion.

In “The Telephone,” Ben (Drew Larson) makes several attempts at Lucy’s apartment to interrupt her telephone conversations with her friends in order to propose to Lucy (Leah Wons). His last attempt comes as he leaves the apartment and decides to phone Lucy from a telephone booth.

“Opera provides excellent singing and acting experience for our students,” said director David Richardson. “The music of both these operas is very accessible for listeners, and several of the arias are well known. The music carries the plot for both stories.”

Richardson is joined by guest stage director and friend Brent Wilson of Los Angeles.

“The Telephone” and “The Medium,” which will be sung in English, debuted as a double bill Feb. 18, 1947, in New York.

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