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Offenbach's "The Bandits" June 2

Belmont, CA, May 22, 2007 — Tired of making peanuts by picking pockets and easy scams, four small-time crooks try to break into the big-time with a $75 million international heist in Jacques Offenbach’s “The Bandits” at 7:30 p.m.,  June 2 at the NDNU Theatre.

Originally produced in 19th century Paris with a cast of 300, this comedy will utilize a cast of 19 performers from San Francisco Pocket Opera. The performance is part of a week-long celebration of Pocket Opera’s 30th Anniversary season. Henry Mollicone’s “Emperor Norton” and “Starbird” will be presented on Sunday, June 3, also at the NDNU Theatre.

Donald Pippin, San Francisco arts icon and Artistic Director of Pocket Opera, will conduct and narrate the story of “The Bandits.” Phil Lowery will direct.

NDNU and Pocket Opera have established a partnership over the last four years, including the Young Artist Apprentice Project, a program under the umbrella of NDNU’s Department of Music and Vocal Arts. In cooperation with Pocket Opera, young artists sing roles in operas; perform alongside professionals, faculty, and sometimes their own instructors, in both University and professional settings. NDNU celebrated this relationship earlier this month by awarding Pippin an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters at its commencement ceremony.

“The NDNU/Pocket Opera relationship has offered our students an extraordinary, unique opportunity to “learn by doing,” working as apprentices in a professional environment, with professional expectations,” said Debra Lambert, Chair of NDNU’s Department of Music & Vocal Arts.

NDNU graduate student Justin Taylor Nixon, who plays the Cashier in “The Bandits,” looks forward to his performance. “The characters and plots in Offenbach’s operas are larger than life, fun, and timeless. Working with Donald Pippin and his translations is always a positive experience. The music is wonderful. All in all, a very enjoyable experience for both the audience and the cast.”

Tickets are available through Pocket Opera at (415) 972-8934. The NDNU Theatre is located on the University campus at 1500 Ralston Avenue in Belmont. For more information, call NDNU’s Music Department at (650) 508-3429.