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The Opera Show
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Last month at Barcelona’s splendid Liceu opera house, a sumptuous version of Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde was staged. With a running time of close to five hours and a set designed by British artist David Hockney, the performance by the Los Angeles Opera Company must have had purists weeping with joy. This month, they may be slightly less enthused with the arrival in Barcelona of The Opera Show, although, equally, there are many who will be gratified by the all-singing, all-dancing extravaganza.
With a style that mixes the classic (wigs) and the contemporary (black leather and sequin outfits) with a more minimalist look (simple Thirties’ clothes), The Opera Show could be described as a live equivalent of The Best Opera Album in the World…Ever!. It takes some of the most popular arias written by the likes of Puccini, Verdi, Rossini and Mozart (‘Nessun Dorma’, ‘La Donna E Mobile’ and ‘O Sole Mio’—the kind of thing we all like to bash out in the shower or bath on occasion), and has four singers, five dancers and eight musicians perform them with all the guts and gusto you’d expect from a night at the opera.
If you know your Ring Cycle from your Rake’s Progress, or have any kind of opinion on whether Opera North’s 1993 staging of La Bohème has no equals, you should probably give The Opera Show a Pavarotti-sized wide berth. The Opera Show has no illusions about what it wants to bring its audience: a rollicking good time with big voices and big songs. It’s never going to be shown at La Scala, or the Liceu come to that, but for those who enoy the old favourites, The Opera Show will likely hit just the right note.
The Opera Show: Teatre Victòria, March 17th to April 4th, €23 to €45, www.theoperashow.com