Saturday night was the opening performance of Janáček’s Kát’a Kabanová in the Sottile Theatre. One of the composer’s gems of operatic literature, this opera actually contains minute chorus parts. We’ve had a fun time learning the repertoire – a brief scene with a men’s chorus at the beginning of Act III, choral interludes that create the tonal landscape of a stormy river, and a rousing finale where the main female character drowns herself in a river. All of the typical dramatic components found within operas appear in this beautifully tragic story. The chorus played its small role very well, and we felt accomplished. It was a great night for opera in Charleston!
Here’s a review of the Kát’a performance:
Sunday brought along a welcome day of rest. Many choristers, myself included, ventured out to Sullivan’s Island for much needed fun in the sand. A beach trip was all that was needed to rejuvenate the body and soul. Afterwards, choristers parted ways until this evening. Another group of us went to see “A Simple Space,” featuring the daredevil acrobatics of Australians. It was one of the most incredible shows I’ve ever seen. The human body is truly a canvas of expression; I couldn’t believe some of the moves these performers were doing with just the strength of their bodies. Here’s just a tiny glimpse of one of the many acts they were performing.
After the show, a few choristers sat around Caviar and Bananas and enjoyed the lovely evening. We were later joined by the countertenors from El Niño – Steven Rickards, Daniel Bubeck, and Brian Cummings. A night of joyful conversation and silly stories was enough to send us away with happy hearts. We later returned to our dorms, where card games, conversation, and fun iPhone games ensued.
Today brings our second performance of El Niño and our first collective Westminster Choir rehearsal. We’re moving quickly through the festival!