Ive just booked tickets for EK's Aida without much knowledge of what Im letting myself in for. I've been aware of Aida as an opera for years but as far as Im aware I dont know any of the music or story. Reading up on it this production is sung in Italian with English subtitles and features a 'real live horse'. What am I letting myself in for?
If you don’t know anything about Aida then I’m guessing this is an early introduction to Opera? Good luck.
Aida is one of the crowning glories of Musical Theatre and I really hope you have a great time. Tuneful, influential and can be extremely moving.
Aida is really at heart a love story that can break your heart with sensitive production, conducting and singing and probably for that reason hasn’t been featured as much in Opera Houses today as it was in the past.
The Ellen Kent production is very traditional and as the addition of a horse suggests, goes heavy on the Spectacular (but with a very limited budget!). The problem is this unbalances the evening because fun though it is, it all happens in the first act. The real beauty unfolds during the Opera if the performers are good enough.
It will serve as a good introduction. I saw her tour of this a few years ago and it was Ok but I still hope to see great.
If you don’t have the inclination to get a CD familiarise yourself by spending a little time on Youtube Look for Celeste Aida. Pavarotti Aida. Grand March (You will know this one) O Patria Mia . Maria Callas.
I saw it a couple of years back for the first time. It was advertised as a having horses and spectacular scenes when thousands of soldiers parade before the king. To enable this to appear to happen, the small cast had to go from one side of the stage to the other, then run round the back and start again. You could see them trying hard not to show they were out of breath. Not exactly what I thought it would be.