The Selfish Giant – Victorian Opera
The Selfish Giant | Victorian Opera
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Oscar Wilde's charming short story, The Selfish Giant, has enchanted young readers since it was first published in 1888.
After a cantankerous Giant banishes children from playing in his garden, he experiences the chill of perpetual Winter. When children sneakily return, so does the beauty and joyfulness of Spring, teaching the Giant to open his heart generously in order to enjoy life’s riches.
Premiered in 2019, this Australian Green Room Award-winning operatic adaptation comes from the creative genius of two of Victorian Opera’s former Developing Artists: composer Simon Bruckard and librettist Emma Muir-Smith
Following its sold-out debut season in 2019, The Selfish Giant returns to the stage with its wit and playfully eclectic musical style.
Watch Victorian Opera performances on demand by purchasing Digital Access.
The Selfish Giant is available on demand from May 28 for six months. Watch when you want and as many times as you like. A$30
Jane Eyre – National Theatre
Jane Eyre - National Theatre at Home (ntathome.com)
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The bold and dynamic new production of Charlotte Brontë’s classic novel, directed by Sally Cookson for the National Theatre and Bristol Old Vic, is just now available to stream on their website. The story of the trailblazing Jane Eyre is as inspiring as ever.
This production emphasises one woman’s fight for freedom and fulfilment on her own terms. Facing obstacles, surviving poverty, injustice and the discovery of a bitter betrayal before taking the ultimate decision to follow her heart.
Met Opera On Demand
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One of the very few pluses of the pandemic was the gift we got from the Metropolitan Opera, the daily free access to one of their remarkable, high quality HD titles. I wallowed every day in both the current, but mainly the historic productions, the great singers of the past, the major productions I had missed or not been able to afford to see live, the huge scale of that vast stage filled with the best that opera can offer, night after night.
All good things, they say, come to an end, and inevitably, the great opera houses of the world reopened, the ticket-buying audiences returned, albeit not in the numbers of before, and the free videos ceased. You can hardly blame them. Opera is an expensive beast and they had to stop giving it away and start charging again.
However, that great library of opera titles is still available online and, if you’re an operalover, the cost is negligible.
The Met is including new HD titles from the 2021–22 season—including Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos, Terence Blanchard’s Fire Shut Up in My Bones, Matthew Aucoin’s Eurydice, and Verdi’s Rigoletto—and the entire catalog of more than 800 full-length Met performances on your favorite devices.
Unlimited means unlimited, all these performances from the oldest to the newest, at our fingertips. I think this is a great deal. For this week only, from today through July 31, 2022, we can take advantage of a limited-time summer promotion: a full-year, unlimited-access subscription to Met Opera on Demand for just $99.99! This is a full third off the regular subscription price of $149.99 which, in itself, seems to me a steal. But then, I love opera in all its grandness.
The Fahrenheit Alliance Ⅲ
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I’m not entirely sure what this Japanese multimedia project is but it sure sounds intriguing. It is described as an ambitious original multimedia staging of playwright Kyle Yamada’s The Fahrenheit Alliance inspired by Ray Bradbury’s novel Fahrenheit 451.
Kyle Yamada’s 2020 play posits a private way for people to gather during an emergency when they are forbidden to assemble, as in a Covid-19 lockdown.
Inspired by this, Hirai-Kikaku and Media Kobo has developed a live-streaming project, consisting of a series of short performances. Each performance lasts about 15-20 minutes. These performances represent the transfer of communication from location to location, performer to performer. For example, one participant records a voice for someone else, that someone listens and performs along with the recording. The performer then records their voice for another person, thus passing the baton. A series of ‘voices’ and ‘bodies’ form a non-literal correspondence..
In this way, the actors trapped in their room by Covid-19 organise a secret, invisible alliance transcending walls and distance.
The first and second performances have been streamed live and archived via YouTube. The third part of this series will be streamed live at C ARTS on 7 and 14 August at 13:00 at the 2022 Edinburgh Fringe and a recording of the 7 August live streaming will be available on demand from 8 August. £3
Click here for Part 3 On demand tickets⇨ https://res.cthearts.com/event/34:3472/34:59462/
Click here for Live streaming tickets⇨ https://res.cthearts.com/event/34:3490/
Maria Callas – Tosca 1964
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Maria Callas was a Greek tragedy. Her enormous professional success, her determination to make herself over from the fat girl constantly shunned when young, into the greatest star opera had ever seen, her unparallelled musicality, her dramatic persona, all this was in counterbalance with a private life that was an almost unbroken disaster.
The Diva to end all Divas, yes, but what lies beneath could be heard in her voice, even when that miraclous instrument began to fray. Perhaps particularly when it began to let her down. No one did Diva like Maria Callas. As her career declined, her affair with the billionaire Onassis dominated the tabloids.
With her 1964 Royal Opera House comeback production of Tosca, she sought to set things right. Using the footage of that performance as its primary focus, this film tells her story from today’s perspective with interviews from fans, like Rufus Wainwright, and opera experts like ROH director Antonio Pappano.
Rich Man’s Frug – Sweet Charity – Bob Fosse
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My friend and fellow critic Gerald Berkowitz finds wonderful things for you on YouTube. This amazing piece of dance video is a classic number made for the musical Sweet Charity. Choreography, Bob Fosse, of course. Stylistically, it’s a perfect encapsulation of its 1960s time and of his genius.
The lead dancer in this clip is Suzanne Charny but neither Jerry nor I know who the bald-headed mustachioed featured dancer is. This is the kind of thing that keep me up at night. Help, readers, please.
Ruth Leon is a writer and critic specialising in music and theatre.