Puccini’s Turnadot comes to Queen Elizabeth for first of 2017/18 Vancouver Opera season

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Colossal and colourful, spectacular and intimate—that’s a night at the opera as Vancouver Opera presents Giacomo Puccini’s Turandot, the opening production of the company’s exciting 2017–2018 season. To stunning effect, Puccini’s final opera combines his musical mastery with a tale as old as time. Based on Persian legend, and set in ancient Beijing (Peking), Turandot is the dramatic story of an icy princess, emotionally imprisoned by her own vengeful cruelty, who sets herself and her people free when she opens her heart to love. Among the many highlights in Turandot is Calaf’s show-stopping aria “Nessun Dorma.”

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Inaugural Vancouver Opera Festival has stunning line-up

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Vancouver Opera’s first Vancouver Opera Festival is featuring three main shows, Otello, Dead Man Walking, and The Marriage of Figaro. The full three-week festival has a lot of exciting shows going on, so check it all out below.

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Superb singers and stunning designs feature in this year’s exciting Vancouver Opera Festival

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Three dazzling new opera productions are at the core of the inaugural Vancouver Opera Festival, April 28 to May 13, 2017.

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Vancouver Opera opens season with wonderful fairytale story of Hansel & Gretel

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Vancouver Opera has brought to life a new family-friendly production of the beloved fairytale opera Hansel and Gretel, featuring larger-than-life puppet creations, costume design, and sets of world-famous Calgary-based Old Trout Puppet Workshop. Perfect for children and adults alike, this show is a magical night with great visuals and beautiful singing. Continue reading

Hansel & Gretel comes to Vancouver Opera

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Vancouver Opera brings to life a new family-friendly production of the beloved fairytale opera Hansel and Gretel, featuring larger-than-life puppet creations and costume design of world-famous Calgary-based Old Trout Puppet Workshop. The master artisans of Old Trout Puppet workshop have created an enchanting fairy-tale world of visual surprises for ages 6+. Continue reading

POV’s Barber of Seville takes audiences on a wild adventure

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Pacific Opera Victoria’s production of The Barber of Seville is a lively one. Figaro helps lovers Rosina and Almaviva outwit Rosina’s guardian Dr. Bartolo, who wants her for himself. True love takes work, and for these three that includes theft, lies, bribery, and brawling.

This wicked comedy is a joyous three hour romp with plot twists and fun, light-hearted music. Rossini’s farcical roller coaster of an opera is a great celebration of youth, hope, and love.

The sets and costumes mirrored this exuberance. The unique, moveable set design fit every moment and was awash with coloured lighting for each emotion. Dr. Bartolo’s (Peter McGillivray) golden coat was elaborate and matched his personality surprisingly well.

Dr. Bartolo had a standout performance, earning him many of the cheers and jests by the end. McGillivray captured the grumpy, constricting personality of his character effortlessly. The only scenes that matched his comedic might on stage were those with everyone together. Both Count Almaviva (Antonio Figueroa) and Rosina (Sylvia Szadovszki) had good performances as well, managing to capture their love and chemistry while together and apart.

The parallels between Count Almaviva’s Figaro (Clarence Frazer) and Dr. Bartolo’s Don Basilio (Giles Tomkins) as the string-pullers was equally entertaining. Figaro was presented as ringmaster of the production, sometimes actually seen above everyone, and setting them bouncing on their toes or heads moving from side to side, while Don Basilio was equally conniving but much less successful in his plots.

This entertaining production is a great continuation for the Pacific Opera this season. Visually stunning, and musically enchanting, I can’t wait to see how Midsummer Night’s Dream continues the trend in April.

The final performance is Sunday, February 21 at 2:30pm. Pre-performance lectures take place in the theatre lobby one hour prior to each show. The opera is performed in Italian with English subtitles. Tickets are available from the Royal and McPherson Box Office at 250-386-6121, or online at http://www.rmts.bc.ca.