[PAST EVENT] The Music Department's Opera Workshop

April 12, 2019 - April 13, 2019
7pm - 7pm
Ewell Hall, Recital Hall
221 Jamestown Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185Map this location
Access & Features
  • Open to the public

World Premiere of "The Whitechapel Arias" on April 12 & 13, 7 pm, Ewell Recital Hall

On April 12 and 13, The Music Department's Opera Workshop will premiere "The Whitechapel Arias," a one-act play by W&M professor Nancy Schoenberger, based on the five canonical victims of Jack the Ripper. The play draws on historical events in its retelling of the lives of five known victims - Catherine Eddowes, Mary Ann  "Polly" Nichols, Elizabeth Stride, Anne Chapman, and Mary Jane Kelly. The play features dramatic monologues and 18th and 19th c. music -  ballads, drinking songs, laments, lullabies.

The play's director is Elizabeth Wiley of W&M's Theatre, Speech, and Dance Department. Opera singer Ryan Fletcher, longtime presenter of Opera Workshop, is Music Director of the production. Mary Eason Fletcher, who teaches in the Applied Music Program at W&M, serves as music consultant and vocal coach. Schoenberger is a poet and biographer who directs the Creative Writing Program at the university. "It's wonderful to be part of this production," Mary Eason Fletcher comments, "which is both creative and commemorative. The writing -- plus the talent of the student performers -- beautifully illuminates the lives of these women and the time in which they lived."

 The play will have two performances at 7 pm in Ewell Recital Hall, on April 12 & 13. Free and open to the public.


Nancy Schoenberger, Professor of English, Director of Creative Writing