The music is beautiful and speaks for itself. French Baroque rarities by Rameau, Dandrieu and Courbois dance with subdued, exuberant and often tremulous elegance around the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice.
Garden of Vanished Pleasures is available to stream through October 10, and you should watch before it's gone. I'd say this is one of the more mature, well-produced digital items I've seen, and I'm not really surprised that it comes out of Soundstreams.
I think the night, strangely, was best summed up by the opening act: BLO elected to open the evening with the prologue from Cavalleria's much-beloved double-bill partner, I Pagliacci, with Arrey singing Tonio's line.
Wilson may be my new favourite interpreter of Wagner. Her Isolde did things to me, made me stop and zone in. Wilson always impresses me in her attention to detail; it's very clear that in the practice room, she has given attention to each note she sings.
The Tongue & The Lash features some of the night's best singing. Markel Reed as Baldwin orates with a steely baritone that comes with some bite; tenor Jonathan Johnson exudes an easy power that's slightly unnerving — even a bit colonialist — in his portrayal of Buckley, fan of racial segregation.
The Monster I Am Today is an excellent pick for the contemporary opera fan. It's grand and operatic, with its emotional peaks and depths. For me, it's a completely new — and frankly, overdue — perspective on this beloved art form. It's a fresh read, and I highly recommend.
As ever, I was truly inspired by the creativity of the artists in the line-up this season at Tête à Tête; they never fail in their curation of and encouragement for any and all work that lies outside the realm of the traditional.
Indeed Barber, the most thoroughbred of warhorses and the ultimate comic opera, has the potential to delight anew with a sense of tradition that feels like innovation, even in a sprawling park on a smiling summer night.
The pandemic may have put performances on hiatus, but audiences are back and eager to enjoy live theater with all the passion and perseverance of the human experience. Welcome back, opera. We've missed you!
The heart wrenching scenes we did get were truly compelling, but I found myself getting impatient in the less exciting sections. The brief flashes of forbidden passion just weren’t enough to keep the momentum going, and I just wanted them to skip to the juicy parts!