Cape Town Opera are ending their 2016 season with Claudio Monteverdi’s haunting ‘Orpheus’ opera, the earliest operatic work which has retained a place in the international canon, to be staged at the Artscape Theatre from November 19 to 26.
A team of cutting-edge creatives has collaborated to stage Orfeo’ descent into darkness as he searches the underworld for his departed wife, Euridice.
Multiple award-winning director and designer Jaco Bouwer (‘Balbesit’, ‘Rooiland’, and ‘Samsa-Masjien’) makes his CTO debut with this production. He is joined by Magdalene Minnaar (Associate Director), Ina Wichterich (Choreography), Bridget Baker (Costume Design) and Wolf Britz (Lighting Design).
Erik Dippenaar leads a cast of singers through Monteverdi’s score, accompanied by the Camerata Tinta Barocca, a Cape Town-based baroque ensemble consisting of a core of string players with a harpsichord.
What does Bouwer find appealing about ‘Orfeo’? “First of all, written in 1607, the music and the opera itself is probably the oldest intact opera that exists, or rather the first form of what we know today as opera,” says the director. “Secondly, I’m very much a follower of French philosopher Maurice Blanchot’s idea when it comes to image and fascination: Blanchot approaches the myth of Orpheus, who brings his wife Eurydice from the underworld into the light of day, and then loses her, as an allegory for the artist’s attempt to move the image out of obscurity into light, to make conscious the unconscious. In other words, the artist at work,” adds the theatre maker.
One thing audiences have become accustomed from Bouwer is his very strong design aesthetic. No two Bouwer shows look, or feel remotely alike.
So what does the maestro have in store for audiences of his first opera? “My approach is generally very visual and in this particular production – which for me, in essence, is about image production – I will attempt to really delve into the construction and deconstruction of the image itself.”
Tickets are R150 and R200.
To celebrate a successful 2016 season, Cape Town Opera is offering a special R260 Orfeo opera & meal special:
R260 includes your opera ticket, a Greek inspired meal (a choice of vegetarian or chicken moussaka and Greek salad) and a glass of wine or non-alcoholic beverage served after the performance in the Theatre Well.
On November 19, 23, 24 and 26, dinner will be served immediately after the performance. On Sunday, November 20, lunch will be served at 1.30pm, with the performance commencing at 3pm.
Book at Computicket.