Production poster for Cosi Fan tutte: Directed by Joe McDonnell, Wolfgan Amadeus Mozart's Cosi fan tutte at the Center for the Performing Arts Theatre, March 2, 3, 6-9 at 7:30 p.m. and March 4 at 2 p.m.

Director Joe McDonnell describes Cosi fan tutte as “a highly comical, fast-paced satire, loaded with gorgeous music.

The Illinois State University School of Theatre and Dance and School of Music will present Così fan tutte, ossia La scuola degli amanti, (Thus Do They All, or The School for Lovers), directed by Joe McDonnell. The production will be sung in Italian and English, with music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte. The production opens March 2 at 7:30 p.m. Performances will be held in the Center for the Performing Arts Theatre and will run through March 9.

This opera begins when two young officers, Ferrando and Guglielmo, discuss the true faithfulness of their fiancées. Don Alfonso, a crafty cynic, overhears the men and bets that he can prove their fiancées unfaithful in just one day. The challenge is accepted. Before long, the fiancées (and sisters), Fiordiligi and Dorabella, are told that their lovers must “go to war,” while two handsome strangers (the officers in disguise) arrive on a mission of seduction. With the help of the cunning maid Despina, Don Alfonso ups the ante and throws increasingly extreme situations at all four lovers. As the couples wrestle with temptation and heartbreak, each cannot help but reveal—and discover—who they really are. With certainty a distant memory, how will this love story end?

McDonnell describes the opera as “a highly comical, fast-paced satire, loaded with gorgeous music. We keep the traditional ‘park and bark’ to a minimum and ask our wonderfully talented group of young people to juggle complicated, demanding vocals with challenging blocking and movement, untypical to traditional opera. We hope the audience can say, ‘They never saw an opera quite like this one’ and ‘They never realized they could enjoy opera so much!’”

Così fan tutte runs March 2, 3, and 6–9 at 7:30 p.m. with a matinee on March 4 at 2 p.m. Performances will take place in the Center for the Performing Arts Theatre.

For tickets or more information, please contact the College of Fine Arts Box Office, which is located in the Illinois State University Center for the Performing Arts and is open 11 a.m.–5 p.m., Monday–Friday, at (309) 438-2535. Tickets ($12 for students and $17 for adults) can also be purchased at Free performance parking is available in the School Street Parking Garage in spots 250 and above, at 400 W. Beaufort St., in Normal.