Viterbo University Conservatory for the Arts to Present "I Have a Song to Sing!" Oct. 15 and Oct. 17

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Oct. 5, 2021

Contact Karla Hughes at 608-796-3775 or


LA CROSSE, Wis. – Explore the theme of love through the music of Gilbert and Sullivan with Viterbo University music students as they present I Have a Song to Sing! at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 15 and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 17 in the Nola Starling Recital Hall.

I Have a Song to Sing! is comprised of music from five of Sir William Schwenck Gilbert and Sir Arthur Sullivan’s lesser known operettas, PatiencePrincess IdaRuddigore, The Gondoliers and Yeomen of the Guard.

“I am passionate about the works of Gilbert and Sullivan and want to introduce them to young performers,” said Viterbo music faculty member Karla Hughes, the director of the production. “Not only are they very accessible for young voices, but they are also very funny and bridge the worlds of opera and music theatre combining dialogue, movement, and operatic singing.”

Hughes explained that Gilbert, the librettist of the duo, had a delightfully comic take on the conventions of love for the Victorian era in England that audience members will enjoy. Her favorite example is a scene from Ruddigore in which the characters Rose and Robin love one another and long to court and marry. Robin is so shy he cannot muster the courage to ask Rose for her hand in marriage. Rose is so dedicated to her Victorian era book of etiquette (which forbids ladies to express their true feelings to men), she cannot bring herself tell Robin how she feels. In the duet, they tell one another how they feel, but under the pretext of them asking advice for “a friend.” The audience sees how simple it would be to solve this problem, but the characters are deeply perplexed.

“Sullivan’s exquisite melodies enhance Gilbert’s hilarious lyrics,” Hughes said of the music throughout I Have a Song to Sing!

Tickets are $16 plus taxes and fees for general admission seating. Masks are required to be worn in all indoor public spaces on the Viterbo campus. For more information or to order tickets, contact the Viterbo box office at 608-796-3100 or visit