Parlando: The COC Blog

1/18/2011

Season Announcement Tomorrow!

Tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. we'll be announcing our 2011/2012 season, and through our  webcast (which will be embedded here) you'll be able to find out what's coming the moment it's announced. But in the meantime, why not speculate? Here are some hints: 

1. Among the operas, four different languages are represented.

2. The difference in ages between the season's oldest opera and its newest is 256 years.

3. The operas have a combined total character death count of 13.

4. Some of the operas have the protagonist's name in the title. Of these, there is a 50/50 split between male names and female ones. 

5. The 2010/2011 season and the 2011/2012 season have only two composers in common.

Image via flickr user takomabibelot.

 

Posted by Cecily Carver / in 2011/2012 / comments (1) / permalink

1/15/2011

Behind the Scenes: The Fire Curtain

[Behind the Scenes, a series of guest posts by associate technical director Barney Bayliss, has returned for the Winter Run! To see all Behind the Scenes posts, click here]

We are near the end of the second week in the theatre with The Magic Flute and Nixon in China, and as with the Fall Season, I have not had much time to write blog entries until now.

Nixon in China is a rented production, first presented in St. Louis, and we loaded it in first on Jan. 5.  We spent a day hanging the lighting, then a day building the Nixon set, then two days focusing for Nixon. That all went very well, ahead of schedule and everything looks good. The Nixon set is very red and the lighting looks interesting. The Nixon cast is rehearsing back at head office now.

Yesterday, on Jan. 12, we loaded in the Magic Flute set. This is a new production, fresh from our Scene Shop, via the rehearsal hall. Flute also went together smoothly, and the set looks beautiful. It reminds me of Edwards Gardens.

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Posted by Barney Bayliss / in Behind the Scenes / comments (0) / permalink

1/13/2011

The Red Detachment of Women

In Act II of Nixon in China, the Nixons attend an opera, The Red Detachment of Women, and find themselves involved in the action to a degree beyond what they had expected. Though the opera-within-an-opera is the creation of John Adams, Alice Goodman, and their choreographers, The Red Detachment of Women is a real-life work. Based on a novel and film of the same name (which were based on historical events), it exists in both ballet and operatic versions, and was the occasion for the meeting of the Nixons and Mao Tse-tung's wife, Jiang Qing.

In her book Nixon in China: The Week that Changed the World, Margaret MacMillan describes the performance and its reception (page 275):

". . . Interpreters whispered the plot in the Americans' ears but it was not difficult to follow, because the good characters—peasants, Communists, guerrillas—bounded on looking noble and upright while the villains—landlords and their minions—slunk on with averted faces. In spite of the propaganda, Nixon found it an enjoyable spectacle. 'This is certainly the equal of any ballet that I have seen, in terms of production,' he told American reporters. 'It was,' thought Haldeman who had also enjoyed the performance, 'rather an odd sight to see the [President] clapping at the end for this kind of thing, which would have been horrifying at home, but it all seems to fit together somehow, here.'"


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Posted by Cecily Carver / in 2010/2011 / comments (1) / permalink

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Sara Fulgoni in the COC production of Bluebeard's Castle. Photo: Michael Cooper © 2001

 

 

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