A few weeks ago my friend's Chris and Marissa invited me to the Seattle Opera to see the current production, Orpheus and Eurydice. Marissa is a very talented dancer and dancing in the production. This was my first experience with the Seattle Opera and I was pleasantly surprised.
If you do not know the myth of Eurydice and Orpheus, here is the quick Elise version. You can also check out the Seattle Opera version, too.
Orpheus and Eurydice is performed in French, but subtitles are displayed above the stage, in an non-obtrusive way. I found that I was often not following the subtitles and instead just watching the actors and dancers.
The Opera starts with Eurydice's funeral. Orpheus is obviously distraught and mourning. He wants her back and is pleading with the spirits to give her back (also, in this scene the dancers rub mud on their face). Amore, the fairy on a bike with really sparkly gold wings, tells Orpheus that he can have Eurydice back, but he cannot look at her during their journey home.
Orpheus then goes to Hell to look for Eurydice. The spirits are dancing around him, trying to block him, and Eurydice isn't there, but he maybe wins them over... I'm not sure why he left Hell.
Then he goes to the heavens. They are beautiful, tranquil and Orpheus is distracted for a moment, but he still misses Eurydice. This scene is very calming and I could not help but feeling relaxed and tranquil myself. The shade of blue in the backdrop is absolutely beautiful and I want that color for my bedroom walls.
Also, I did cry a little bit during this scene because Marissa looked absolutely stunning on stage. This is her first large performance, where she is featured. She loves being a dancer and I was so happy to see her following her passion, and so proud of her.
OK, back to the synopsis....
While in heaven, the spirits are moved by Orpheus and they give him Eurydice. But remember, he can't look at her. Well, Eurydice starts begging him to look at her, and he won't, but she is whining and guilt tripping him. At this point, I am getting upset with Eurydice; she couldn't wait until they got home for him to look at her? Why does she need him to look at her, he obviously just went through Heaven and Hell to find her. Her guilt trip finally works, and he looks at her. Well, guess what, she died.
Orpheus is heart broken, yet again. Then Amore rolls up on her bike and tells Orpheus that since he really loved her, she would bring back Eurydice. Really? So Amore was just playing games? What a bitch.
It ends with Orpheus and Eurydice happily ever after (well, $5 says she nags him again).
I know my version is tongue in cheek, but I honestly enjoyed this show very much. It did exactly what I wanted it to do - took me away from my reality for a few hours and captured me. If you know how ADD I am, you know this is no easy feat.
Tickets are still available for the last two shows, and if you have a second check out Marissa's website and spot her in the trailer below, or at the show. P.S. she's for hire.
Also, for some opera fun... The Seattle Opera held a contest for free tickets, the winner had to answer questions in a musical format.