Thursday, 14 November 2013

Opera Diaries

I'm a big opera fan and have been since 1996! I especially love operas by Mozart, Puccini, Verdi and Britten.  I like anything that tells an interesting story with relevant messages raised for today's society.

My first two operas were seeing Puccini's La Boheme and Bizet's Carmen in 1996.  Both productions were done by Opera North.  For the past 17 years I've supported Opera North productions at the Leeds Grand Theatre and have seen a total of 26 opera with the company.  My favourites must have been the two operas I've seen recently - Britten's A Midsummer Night Dream and Death in Venice (please click for my thoughts).  Those operas are part of Britten Centenary Celebrations.

I'm open to see different productions and glad I did.  Seeing Verdi's Othello made me appreciate Shakespeare's tragedy and got to see the amazing National Theatre's production of Othello starring Adrian Lester and Rory Kinnear via a live screening at the end of September 2013.

I don't want to forget Shakespeare's comedy, A Midsummer Night's Dream, which I've appreciated a lot more since seeing Britten's opera.  I'm now looking forward to seeing Verdi's Macbeth, one of my favourite tragedies, coming on stage in an Opera North's production in the new year.

I really enjoyed the operatic gems Opera North have produced over my opera journey such as Hansel and Gretel (Saw in 2001), Il Tabarro/Love's Luggage Lost (Saw in 2004) and Romeo & Juliette (Saw in 2008 as part of my GCSE French revision).  

I've seen different opera by a few other companies such as English National Opera, Opera Australia (at the iconic Sydney Opera House!) and Leeds Youth Opera.  I hope to see productions done by different opera companies such as Royal Opera.  Speaking of which I hope to see some live screenings of their operas in the New Year.

Opera to me is expressions of the character questions as well as the story they're singing on stage.  The composers' musical geniuses is reflected through the notes the singers sing of the emotive moments.  Opera either lifts me comically or tragically which mark the essence of what theatre is about. This is why I love opera and the theatre very much!

What the Future Holds?

With a sabbatical being planning in late 2014.  I won't be going to the theatre as much compared to 2013.  But I do have some Opera North productions to look forward to including Macbeth, The Girl of the Golden West and La Boheme.  I would be content just seeing these productions even if I have to be very selection about any additional productions I do plan to see.

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