Period.Pieces

Opera Atelier in France’s Le Figaro

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We are delighted to announce that the company has been featured on the front page of the special entertainment section of Le Figaro – the most important newspaper in France. The photograph, by OA photographer Bruce Zinger, shows the company in performance at the Royal Opera House Versailles, while on our most recent tour of Charpentier’s Medea. This is a wonderful affirmation of the place Opera Atelier now holds in one of the most prestigious opera houses in Europe. None of this would have been possible without the active participation of the Touring Section of the Canada Council, Ontario … Read more

Why perform Figaro in English?

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Opera Atelier has always produced comedy in English whenever possible. I firmly believe that comedy moves at a different pace than tragedy. There is less time for the audience to reflect on what is being said, rather the audience is drawn in to rapid-fire dialogue, particularly in eighteenth century scenarios. Revelations are instantaneous, word games involving sexual innuendo occur frequently and punch lines race by as fast as the actors can deliver them.

When we are forced to rely on surtitles during comic performances the audience is frequently ahead or behind the actor’s delivery. It is simply impossible for the … Read more

Trouble buying tickets?

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Dear Patrons,
Having trouble buying tickets online this week? Let us help! We have been informed of an issue affecting Google Chrome users when purchasing our tickets on Ticketmaster. We deeply apologize for the inconvenience this has caused our patrons. Please note the following solution –
Copy and Paste this: chrome://flags/#prefer-html-over-flash into the URL of Chrome and change the settings for “Run all Flash Content when Flash Setting is Set to ‘Allow’ Mac, Windows, Linux, Chrome OS” from Default to Enabled. You may need to change the setting for “Prefer HTML over Flash” to Disabled. Clear your browsing history, close … Read more

Medea Director’s Notes

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We refer to Opera Atelier’s production of Charpentier’s Medea as a “period production” — but what we mean by that term requires some careful explanation.

Opera Atelier does not wish to be perceived as a “museum company” and we are in no way trying to reproduce a performance exactly as it would have happened in the past. Rather, we are taking references from the past as a take-off point or a threshold we cross in order to create something vibrant and new. Simply put, our ultimate goal is to tell the stories we have chosen in a balanced and coherent … Read more

Medea Choreographer’s Notes

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Medea was first performed on December 4, 1693, at the Palais Royale Theatre in Paris. Louis XIV and the Dauphin attended early in the opera’s run, and some members of the royal family attended numerous times. The score was considered innovative and especially rich in its harmonies. The story is told through dancing, as well as recitatives, airs and choruses. In adherence to the original precepts of opera the dancers are fully integrated as characters in the drama. They represent Corinthians and other members of Créon’s court, and later, demons and phantoms conjured by Médée. They participate in spectacular celebrations, … Read more