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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
October 18, 2017
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Laurier partners with Tapestry in creation of new opera

Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing

Apr 29/13| For Immediate Release


Kimberly Barber, Associate Professor, Voice, Faculty of Music
Wilfrid Laurier University
519-884-0710 ext. 2505 or


Kevin Crowley, Director, Communications and Public Affairs
Wilfrid Laurier University
519-884-0710 ext. 3070 or

WATERLOO – Wilfrid Laurier University’s Faculty of Music will work alongside Tapestry, Canada’s premiere company for new operatic work, this spring in the development of a new one-act choral opera titled Ruth.

Ruth – composed by Laurier alumnus Jeffrey Ryan (B.Mus. ‘84) with librettist Michael Lewis MacLennan – tells the story of an immigrant woman struggling to build a better life in a new land. Ryan and MacLennan will travel to Laurier’s Waterloo campus for an intensive workshop process to complete Ruth.

This workshop will be a collaborative process with Tapestry, giving Faculty of Music students the chance to experience opera creation, while learning from seasoned and emerging artists. Students will take on understudy assignments, participate in acting workshops, and discover skills in preparing a contemporary score, while learning how to bring a work to stage.

“The opportunity to work with a living composer while the work is being created is an invaluable experience, which will give our students on-the-job training and the chance to create professional connections,” said Glen Carruthers, dean of Laurier’s Faculty of Music.

Canadian mezzo-soprano and Laurier Professor Kimberly Barber will lead the young cast as Ruth’s mother-in-law, Naomi. Alumna Stephanie Yelovich (B.Mus. ‘10; Opera Dip ‘12) will play the role of Ruth, and Jayne Hammond (B.Mus. ‘12; Opera Dip ‘13) the role of Orpah.

A free public performance of Ruth will be held Friday, May 3, at 7:30 p.m. in Room A318 of the John Aird Building on Laurier’s Waterloo campus. A Toronto performance will be held Saturday, May 4, at 7:30 p.m. at Tapestry’s Music Theatre in Toronto. Tickets for the Toronto performance are $29 including HST and can be purchased online at or by calling 416-537-6066 ext. 225.


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