Sunday, November 06, 2005


ok, i have a confession to make; i love opera. really really truly love it. its something about it, and theatre in general that gets the nerve endings tingling.

this love for opera led me to go on saturday to see Carmen performed by the WA opera company at his maj. completely fantastic! best production ive seen in some time. it was utterly mindblowing. Carmen herself did an amazing job, perfectly characterised, lovely voice, and all the rest. don jose was suitably pathetically broke, and escamillo (who i've always loved) was everything he needed to be.

what was not quite in order how ever was the couple who sat beside me throughout the 2nd act (after coming late) and HUMMED!!!!!! ok, they did far more than hum, but it was that which was most annoying. from the smell of them they were excessively drunk, and from the look, both excessively seedy. it all started with the running commentary on the story to his wife, then to the surrounding three rows. his wife, who obviously knew the tunes well, hummed and sang, with ever increasing volume, often pre-empting the performers. throughout the whole, we, and our friends on the other side of them, shushed conscientiously, but to no avail. i think the real high point was during the scene in louis pastilia's bar, while carmen was arguing with don jose, her lover, when the bloke next to me elbowed me rather painfully in the ribs, and shouted out, 'what a bitch' in carmen's general direction. then, during the love aria, when we all got a little teary, his wife begins to cry very noisily, and the man gives us a running commentary of that, starting with 'look, the silly bitch 's crying'. needless to say, they were swiftly removed at intermission by the lovely lovely security people.

but regardless, it was a beautiful time. and for the first time, i noticed the beauty of some of the lines in carmen. particularly the love imagery. for those who dont know, carmen is a very beautiful and seductive worker in a tobacco factory, who most of the men are in love with. she scorns them, and instead falls in love with don jose, the only man who, at least seems to, reject her. don jose is a very dutiful police corporal, with a affectionate mother in a town to the north. the action opens with don jose receiving a letter from his mother, delivered by childhood friend michaila who is love with him. when carmen is arrested for attacking another factory worker don jose helps her to escape, and is jailed for this. she works in the bar belonging to her friend while waiting for his release, and in doing so meets matador escamillo, who falls for her.
don jose is released and returns. he is forced by carmen to join their smuggling operation and become an outlaw. escamillo, unaware that don jose is buzzing around, comes to the smugglers hide out to see carmen, but meets jose standing guard, and they duel. when michaela comes with the message that his mother is dying, it becomes pretty obvious that carmen doesnt love don jose anymore, and he flies into a jeaous rage, knocking her out then stalking off. later, he travels to seville where escamillo is performing as a toreador. he argues with carmen, who continually proffesses her love for another, until he shoots her.

that, in a nutshell, is the story. what i love about it is the all consuming, breathless passion of it all. she (carmen) puts into words the essense of how love should be
Love, love is a rebel bird
that nobody can ever tame,
and you call him quite
in vainif it suits him not to come.
Nothing helps, nor threat nor prayer.
Love, love is a gypsy child,
it has never, never, known a law;
love me not, then I love you;
if I love you, you'd best beware!
it all a rather lovely idea, that love without which you can never live. love that overtakes all things.
a friend of mine told me a few days ago that life wouldnt be better in the opera. think of the minor characters who have no story, let alone love, he said. but how wonderful it could be to be the major character, to have that wonderment and all encompassing passion. instead, the modern world gives us polite, insipid affection. ah well, thats the way things pan out i guess.
anyhow, this has become a rathr long post, and i really really need t be studying
i will leave you without more ado, staying only to repeat a rather amusing analogy i was told;
There's two goldfish in a tank, one says to the other "I'll drive, you man the guns
ta ra
toodelpip my sweetlings


Anonymous sweets said...

Damn you and your opera going! I really wanted to but it sold out :'(

6:48 pm  
Anonymous The Jenius said...

I would have liked to see that too. I also have to point this out.


n 2: drawing a comparison in order to show a similarity in some respect; "the operation of a computer presents and interesting analogy to the working of the brain"; "the models show by analogy how matter is built up"

The other definitions were things about biology.

10:18 pm  
Anonymous bec said...

omg, summer of the seventeenth doll opera ! did you watch that in yr 11 ? lmfao . roo is hawaiian ~

11:57 pm  
Anonymous Foolio said...

i think tripod had it right when it came to opera

"I'd go to more opera,
If the fat lady was a skinny lady.
I'd go to more opera,
If you got to come home with a showbag.
I'd go to more opera,
If it was the wrestling."

6:49 pm  
Blogger Cait said...

They also make a good point about ballet...

9:54 pm  
Anonymous Foolio said...

thats true... i would go to more ballet if you got to place bets on the outcome...

10:07 pm  
Blogger Rani-Banani said...

CAIT! i'm ashamed to hear you say that, to think that i have been associating with such a philistine! i meean, i expected no better from him, but you cait?! :-P

10:53 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

sounds gr8....hope u had a gr8 time even those those ppl were annoyin...that happened 2 cait n soph but i was lucky not 2 hear the ppl talkin coz I was a couple of seats to the left of cait n soph...Hope study's goin well..Elle***

10:54 pm  
Blogger Cait said...

Oh come on! "I'd go to more ballet, if the skinny lady was slightly fatter."? Its a valid point!

11:10 am  
Anonymous Foolio said...

i think tripod would know when it comes 2 opera... 1 of them is an ex opera singer afta all

5:23 pm  

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