BGSU Opera Theater students perform at Wood County Public Library

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Entertainment 3/14

Kylie Tusing and Kylie Tusing

The BGSU Opera Theater students set up a special performance in the Wood County Public Library on March 6. With four separate performances from various genres, these pianists and singers put on a show for community members.

After doing the traditions of breathing exercises and meditation, soprano Jhane Perdue sang four songs from classical to folk.

“I loved performing at the library. It is such an amazing space to sing in; the acoustic are perfect for a solo performance,” Perdue said.

In the performances, each different than the last, Perdue set out to take her audience to another place.

“I like to learn the story behind the piece and then translate the text, and I then need to try to relate it to my everyday life,” Perdue said.

The opera students typically have sets of songs ready to go each semester for their final showcases and other performances.  

“It rounds out to memorizing about two songs a month. The pieces performed at the library was repertoire from my previous semester. We have a total of eight pieces that have to be memorized and performance-ready for our end of the year jury,” Perdue said.

Perdue has been active in the performing arts her entire life. Her journey to opera singing started in her early days in middle school.

“I was very active in both my choir and theater programs throughout middle school and high school,” she said.

She distinctly remembered the moment she wanted to perform professionally for the remainder of her adult life.  

“It was when I was fifteen. I went on a school field trip to see ‘Aida’ at the Detroit Opera House. I was sitting in the balcony and saw a production with amazing singers and more importantly singers that looked like me,” she said.

She felt inspired to perform ever since.

“It sparked a fire within me,” she said.

Coming to BGSU as a transfer student, this is her fourth semester here.

“At my old school, my voice teacher did nothing but sing praises about the (BGSU) College of Musical Arts, and since I was unhappy with where I was, she insisted on me auditioning and I did,” Perdue said.

In the future, Perdue hopes to become a full-time performer.

“In 19 years, I would like to be a full-time performer, sing in opera houses, recitals and concerts around the world,” she said.

Her next performance will be over spring break for the John Rutter’s Requiem. Perdue will be performing as their soprano soloist on March 19 in Flint, Michigan, while the next Opera Theater will be the weekend of Friday, April 5. The students will be performing Handel’s “Semele,” and admissions for BGSU students is free upon door entry with student ID.