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The Bartered Bride

by Bedrich Smetana

University Opera Theatre

University Philharmonia Orchestra

Power Center for the Performing Arts

March 15 - 18, 2007


The Story:
A celebration of rural life and love, The Bartered Bride is set in a small Czech village. Young lovers Mařenka and Jeník want to marry. However, her parents have different ideas and have engaged a marriage broker to arrange her betrothal to Vašek, the son of a wealthy landowner. When Jeník unexpectedly ‘barters’ with the marriage broker to not contest the arrangement, he breaks Marenka’s heart. But a traveling circus arriving in town brings more surprises than anyone expects. Is it possible to save true love and gain a profit?

Artistic Significance:

After the warm audience response to our 2002 production of The Cunning Little Vixen, the Opera Theatre is thrilled to present another gem of Czech opera coached by Czech opera expert Timothy Cheek. The Bartered Bride has become a worldwide favorite since its 1870 premiere and is presented with almost as much frequency as Smetana’s symphonic favorite “My Fatherland” (“Ma Vlast”). Composer Bedrich Smetana is considered to be the founder of Czech music, establishing the musical voice of his beautiful and romantic nation using the melodic and rhythmic colors of the Czech vernacular. From its famous fugal overture to the boisterous choruses and dazzling duets, the score mixes infectious folk rhythms and poignant characterization. An entertaining light opera, The Bartered Bride’s charming melodies are sure to delight.


Bartered Bride graphic

Illustration by David Zinn


Director Joshua Major
Conductor Andrew George
Scenic Designer Erhard Rom
Costume Designer Meghann O'Malley Powell
Lighting Designer Stephen Siercks
Czech Diction Coach Tim Cheek
Stage Manager

Brett Finley

Production Photos

Click here to view the Thurs/Sat Cast

Click here to view the Fri/Sun Cast


Click here to view The Bartered Bride program

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Photography Credits:

U-M Photo Services

Joe Welsh

Peter Smith

David Smith

Glen Behring

Tom Bower