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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

VO's Artistic Staff On the Road

Tom Wright
Director of Artistic Planning
I was in Toronto last week for auditions and meetings, along with Company Manager Adrianne Wurz and Associate Conductor / Chorus Director Les Dala. We also took in a couple of productions at the Canadian Opera Company, including Kaija Saariaho’s Love from Afar (L’Amour de Loin).  

Finnish composer Saariaho composed this work in 2000 and since its debut it has become one of the most produced operas of the 21st Century.
It is important that opera companies produce traditional operas of the past, but in order to keep the art form vibrant and relevant we must also produce operas written in our lifetime.
We applaud the COC for mounting this production. We were all taken with the beauty of the music and the excellent artistry of the three lead singers, all Canadian (Erin Wall, Krisztina Szab√≥ and Russell Braun), along with the COC Orchestra and Chorus. Seeing this work makes us very excited to be presenting Tan Dun’s Tea: A Mirror of Soul next season.

The COC's Tosca

The next night we took in Tosca. This was a traditional presentation with world class singers. The COC Orchestra and Chorus were in top form and the smaller roles were all performed well by members of the COC ensemble, many we of whom we had heard in audition earlier in the day. The sets, props and costumes had been refreshed for this production and maybe this production will make its way to Vancouver someday in the future.

- Tom Wright
Director of Artistic Planning
Vancouver Opera

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