Off to the Kennedy Center Terrace Theatre this evening for Britten’s Turn of the Screw. The Terrace is such a beautiful place for chamber opera, and it’s so rarely done there any more. The economics are daunting. Hard not to hemorrage money with only 500 seats available per performance. (I should know… we’re nuts enough to mount full productions in a theatre with 375 seats…) My first full opera season in Washington included opera at the Terrace – 16 (or was it 18??) performances of Don Pasquale and about a dozen of Poppea. I’d admit that all of this happened 21 years ago, but that would make me sound like a geezer…
Hear It For Yourself
The cast sang through Orpheus from top to bottom today. One bit of good news is that the running time may not be quite as long as we had thought. And I know I sound like a broken record, but who knew Telemann could write like this? (Only partly kidding.) I’m so determined to get the message across that I’m working on putting multiple 30-second audio clips on my own website so I can provide links to them here on the blog. Check back in a few days – my geek son has promised that he’ll help me achieve this.
Thinking ahead to Figaro (actually just working on the scenic budget, but that counts, doesn’t it?) … and I was particularly happy to see this article by Patrick Summers, music director of Houston Grand Opera, and a Wolf Trapper himself. Here’s a taste (but you really should read the whole thing:)
Perhaps The Marriage of Figaro has endured simply because its music is so beautiful. But I suspect there is another reason: who among us cannot recall just one memorable day of our youth, whether real or imagined, which evolved into dusk, and during which we experienced disguises, jokes, tears, pain, forgiveness, and laughter at all of it by the time we slept? All too soon, of course, we learn that things don’t always wrap up so neatly. Still, when it comes to the memories of our youth–those memories that we sometimes alter to our liking–that kind of Mozartian magic can exist.