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Thursday, January 12, 2012

James Wright on VO's 2012-2013 Season

We have just announced our season for 2012/13 and I am very excited about the variety of great works we will present.  

La Bohème
It is not unusual for an opera company to present La Bohème: it is a perennial favourite, a great opera for introducing young people and those new to the art form to the emotional peaks that opera provides. 

I’m especially pleased with the vocal and dramatic abilities of the singers who have been carefully chosen to represent Puccini’s beautiful vocal lines as well as the vibrant youth depicted in bohemian Paris of the 19th century. More about this production and its creative team in a later posting.

The Pirates of Penzance
I am excited and pleased to be presenting the great satirical comedy The Pirates of Penzance and to be giving Vancouver audiences a rare opportunity to luxuriate in the talents of Christopher Gaze, Judith Forst and Jonathan Darlington!   

Each brings something (actually, many things) very special to this piece: Christopher’s tremendous sense of theatre and comic timing; Judith’s exquisite vocal production and stunning theatricality; and Jonathan’s incredible musical passion and refinement: all in the cause of a timeless and classic work guaranteed to make you laugh out loud while appreciating the genius of its creators, Messrs. Arthur Sullivan and W.S. Gilbert.

Tea: A Mirror of Soul
A much different opera and exciting to me for very different reasons, is Tan Dun’s evocative and magical Tea:  A Mirror of Soul

Utilizing both “Western” and Chinese traditional instruments and sporting spectacular and fantastical costumes, Tea: A Mirror of Soul tells the tale of a prince-cum-monk suffering "bitter love" involving a princess, of passion so tainted by jealousy that it ends in death, and of fierce struggles over an ancient book of wisdom.

Tan Dun gives us lush Italianate opera, rich orchestration, and the organic sounds of nature — water, paper, and stones. Jonathan Darlington conducts this extraordinary work in its Canadian premiere, bringing his exemplary musical skills and knowledge of Tan Dun’s work to the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.
The Magic Flute

Many of you will recall our Coast Salish Magic Flute presented in January 2007. That special and highly-praised production is returning in early 2013, promising to captivate new audiences and re-inspire those who saw it previously. 

The original creative team is working with our friends at First Peoples’ Heritage, Language, and Culture Council to both re-create the work and bring fresh new insights and theatricality; if you saw it before, you will want to see it again!  I will be talking and writing much more about this work in the months ahead.

This is my overview of our 2012/13 season; I look forward to visiting more about each of these special works and having a conversation with our subscribers, donors, single ticket buyers, and all who have an interest in Vancouver Opera.

 - James Wright
General Director, Vancouver Opera


1 comment:

Krista said...

A great season! I can't wait to see the "First Nations Flute" again and very much look forward to "Tea". And operetta is a much better fit for VO than a broadway musical.