INDEPENDENT NEWS

When the circus comes to… the opera

Published: Mon 27 Aug 2012 10:08 AM
MEDIA RELEASE
Issued by The NBR New Zealand Opera
27 August 2012
When the circus comes to… the opera
“With a famous overture that promises an even madder day than The Marriage of Figaro – and delivers on that promise – our Bartered Bride is a political comedy featuring polkas, fights, excessive amounts of Czech beer, a brilliant anti-Communist circus and a dancing Russian bear.”
– Daniel Slater, Director
The Bartered Bride is no ordinary opera. Half way through, it features a highly technical circus act.
The NBR New Zealand Opera has lined up a top cast of principal singers for its production of The Bartered Bride – New Zealanders Anna Leese, Conal Coad, Andrew Glover, Patricia Wright, Richard Green and Helen Medlyn are joined by Englishman Peter Wedd and Australians Taryn Fiebig and John Antoniou.
“But,” as Aidan Lang, General Director of the company says, “while it’s true that we have lined up a great cast, and it’s true that opera singers have to be great actors as well as great singers, expecting them to be circus performers as well is perhaps pushing the skill set a little too far.
“The circus act in this opera is magnificent,” Lang says. “Consequently, a troupe of performers with high end skills have been contracted to complement our singers and give the audience a thrilling experience.” Working alongside British choreographer Tim Claydon, they are creating an explosion of rapid fire action.
Dancing also features strongly in The Bartered Bride. Opera singers are frequently called upon to dance, and in this opera, Claydon will be taking the singers through their paces, teaching them traditional Bohemian dances such as the polka and furiant and the Slavic folk-dance, the Skoèná.
“This production of The Bartered Bride has something for everyone,” Lang says. “It’s an opera for all the family – it’s warm and funny, but with a bite to it; it’s fast-moving and entertaining, but it will make you think.”
The Bartered Bride opens in Auckland on Saturday 22 September and Wellington on Saturday 13 October. It is sung in English.
THE BARTERED BRIDE
An opera in three acts by Bedøich Smetana / Libretto by Karel Sabina
An Opera North production, restaged by The NBR New Zealand Opera
CREATIVE TEAM
Conductor OLIVER VON DOHNÁNYI
Director DANIEL SLATER
Associate Director/Choreographer TIM CLAYDON
Production Designer ROBERT INNES HOPKINS
Lighting Designer SIMON MILLS
CAST
Maøenka ANNA LEESE
Jenik PETER WEDD
Kecal CONAL COAD
Va¹ek ANDREW GLOVER
Esmeralda TARYN FIEBIG
Kru¹ina JOHN ANTONIOU
Ludmila PATRICA WRIGHT
Micha RICHARD GREEN
Hata HELEN MEDLYN
Accompanied by the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and the Vector Wellington Orchestra
With the Chapman Tripp Opera Chorus
PERFORMANCES:
Auckland – ASB Theatre, Aotea Centre
Sat 22 Sep (7.30pm), Tue 25 Sep (6.30pm), Thu 27 Sep (7.30pm), Sat 29 Sep (7.30pm)
Wellington – St James Theatre
Sat 13 Oct (7.30pm), Tue 16 Oct (6pm), Thu 18 Oct (7.30pm), Sat 20 Oct (7.30pm)
Single Tickets: $49.50 to $189.50. Concessions available for benefactors, senior citizens, students and group bookings. Service fees apply.
Bookings: NZ Opera Box Office, Tel (09) 379 4068 or (04) 499 8343, or:
Auckland: The Edge, Tel 0800 BUYTICKETS (0800 289 842) or www.the-edge.co.nz
Wellington: Ticketek, Tel 0800 TICKETEK (0800 842 538) or www.ticketek.co.nz
--ENDS--

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