Thursday, August 10, 2006

Glimmerglass Opera

Over last weekend August 3-6 I attended Glimmerglass Opera's Gala Weekend with the Miller-Marlowe clan. This group is comrised of my girlfriend Jessie, her parents, and her twin brother Lawson. Among others in attendance were Jessie's grandfather David and his girlfriend Maria. Jessie has been going to this festival for 10+ years, and I was lucky enough to join her and her family this summer. In doing so I saw "The Pirates of Penzance," "The Barber of Seville," "Jenûfa," and the world premiere of "The Greater Good or the Passion of Boule de Suif." All of these were wonderful productions with Barber standing head and shoulders above the rest.
The production of Barber was flawless. The performers excellent. The staging was exquisite. There really wasn't anything that could be picked on. On the other hand, the most difficult to grasp was Greater Good. Being a modern piece there was no shape of melody or tonal harmonies. Although I appreicate the difficult nature of singing and playing such parts it was just difficult to wrap my brain around. The performers were great. The whole scene was too dark and too lengthy. Jenûfa was incredibly well performed and quite moving. Opera Seria near its best. Lastly, Pirates was very fun but a little too hokie for its own good. It was great to see many young kids in the audience and would have been a great introduction to opera. This isn't really an opera but more a musical with great operatic singers since there is spoken-word in place of any recitative. It was all great fun and a wonderful cultural experience for a few days filled with great shows and even better company.

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