Dr. Robert W. Butts, conductor and music director of The Baroque Orchestra of New Jersey will lead a lecture and music appreciation class on opera beginning Tuesday, October 18, at Wharton Music Center in Berkeley Heights. The class, Tuesday Night at the Opera, runs for eight weeks from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. Participants will explore, discuss, and watch highlights from some of the world’s greatest operas. Each week, Maestro Butts will talk about a specific work - its historical relationship to the opera world and to the composer - as well as the story, the characters, and the music. Each class will feature highlights from a major 
production featuring the opera world's most talented singers who have performed in operas from their Baroque beginnings to the modern era.

To many who have wondered why opera continues to draw millions of people and ranks among the most revered forms of music, Dr. Butts unravels the mysteries of opera by explaining the stories, music, and theatricality that are combined into amazing and memorable productions.

Dr. Butts lectures frequently for the New Jersey Council for the Humanities. He currently teaches at Montclair State University and at The College of Saint Elizabeth, and has taught at Drew University, Fairleigh Dickinson University and the County College of Morris. He has presented special talks for New Jersey State Opera, The New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, The State Theater, NJPAC, and at libraries, retirement communities, and museums across the state.

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To register for Dr. Butts’ Tuesday Night at the Opera visit www.WhartonMusicCenter.org.  For more information or help with registering, call Wharton Music Center at 908 790-0700. Class tuition is $125 and is discounted for members of Wharton Music Center.

Judith G. Wharton Music Center, located at 60 Locust Avenue in Berkeley Heights, provides music, theater, and dance instruction, educational programs, and performances for children, teens, and adults. In addition to instruction in all instruments and voice, WMC offers classes in musical theater, dance, drama, choral music, vocal music, music theory, audio recording, early childhood music, and music for children with special needs. Offering a range of musical genres including classical, rock, jazz, and blues, WMC is New Jersey’s largest independent community music center serving students in Berkeley Heights, Summit, Chatham, New Providence, Long Hill, Warren, Basking Ridge, Short Hills, Millburn, Livingston, Westfield, Scotch Plains, and other surrounding communities. WMC is a non-profit charitable organization.