Senior College

The Opera Studies Forum offer a fully enrolled Senior College Course in fall 2015 titled “The Art of Opera.” The course met Mondays, October 5-26, 10am-12pm.

COURSE DESCRIPTION: This course attends to various issues associated with the study and performance of opera today and in the past. Beginning with a general matters related to updated stagings, the effects of modern technology, opera in translation, and defining the authentic version of an opera, the class will move on to considering three specific topics: how to understand less familiar repertory of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, including operas by Handel and Vivaldi; how drama is reflected in the music of enduring works by Mozart and Verdi, and challenges faced by opera singers, such as Maria Callas, Renee Fleming, Enrico Caruso, and Juan Diego Florez.


Katherine Eberle is a professor of voice at the University of Iowa. A versatile mezzo-soprano who specializes in oratorio, chamber music, art song, and opera, she has given over 100 recitals in eighteen states, Europe, and Canada. She was an Artistic Ambassador for the U.S. Information Agency in South America and Korea. Her DVD, Pauline Viardot: Singer, Composer, Forgotten Muse, is available online (

Robert Ketterer is a professor of Classics at the University of Iowa. His numerous conference papers and published articles explore the Greco-Roman tradition in Baroque and Enlightenment opera. His book Ancient Rome in Early Opera appeared in 2009. He serves on the board of the American Handel Society and received the 2013 Outreach Award from the Society for Classical Studies.

Roberta Montemorra Marvin is Director of the Opera Studies Forum at the University of Iowa, where she is on the faculty. An internationally recognized expert on the music of Verdi, she is editor of Cambridge Verdi Encyclopedia, the critical edition of Verdi’s I masnadieri, six books on various musical topics; and author of the award-winning Verdi the Student – Verdi the Teacher.