Candide offers light look at life's obstacles


Seniors Joe Leon (Voltaire) and Aaron Hofmeyer (Candide) and junior Eliza Smith (Cunegonde) headline Candide's large cast of characters. Photo illustration by Mary Bendgen and Nancy Thompson.

The music and theater departments open a four-day run of the opera Candide Thursday, Nov. 1, at Fisher Theater. The joint production features 26 cast members and a 32-piece orchestra.

Based on the novel by Voltaire, the story centers on the tragic events in the life of the title character. Despite the endless obstacles faced by Candide as he journeys around the world in search of his true love, the fast-paced story and uplifting music of Leonard Bernstein lifts the tone of the production.

"It goes back to the satire of Voltaire and looks at how ridiculous life can be sometimes," said show director Brad Dell. "It's really funny, with beautiful, touching moments that make you reflect on yourself."

Show times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, and 2 p.m. on Sunday. Tickets ($19 for adults, $17 for seniors and $12 for students) are available through Ticketmaster and the Iowa State Center ticket office in Stephens Auditorium.