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Fiori’s guide to the Opera!

Fiori Musicali present an evening of Mozart & Rossini at The Castle Theatre, Wellingborough on Sunday 6 October at 7.30pm.

Judit Felszeghy and László Blaskovics Castle Theatre, Wellingborough Fiori Musicali
Judit Felszeghy and László Blaskovics perform on Sunday

To continue the theatre’s theme for this season, the performance is subtitled “An evening at the Opera”. Fiori Musicali, now The Castle’s resident orchestra, will be joined by favourite sopranos Judit Felszeghy and László Blaskovics.

You won’t just get a sparkling evening of quality music with a Fiori performance. Oh no!

To give you even more of a sense of occasion, the sopranos will be dressed in period costume and boss lady Penelope Rapson, will recount the history of the composers, their music and the times in which it was created.

So what better way to prepare for Sunday than to learn a bit about the opera. We’ve prepared some definitions of words that you may hear in relation to opera.

Penelope’s simplified definition of opera

“Opera has always had its enthusiasts and its detractors.  The French composer Debussy  famously said, “In opera there is always too much singing” And Rossini, a composer who wrote an awful lot of the things said, “How wonderful opera would be if there were no singers”.  But without singers there would be no opera!  Opera is according to Samuel Johnson “an exotic and irrational entertainment”, and someone else wrote,  “Opera is where a guy gets stabbed in the back, and instead of dying, he sings!”

Violinist Kerstin Linder-Dewan will also join Fiori
Violinist Kerstin Linder-Dewan will also join Fiori

I suppose opera is a bit like going to a play or a show.  But instead of speaking their lines, the characters sing them.  (This can take some time.  One wag said of Wagner’ opera Parsifal , “It’s the kind of opera that starts at six o’clock, and after it’s been going three hours you look at your watch and it says 6.20.)

Fiori’s evening at the opera is going to be a bit different. Fiori’s singers will be performing some of the well known songs (known as arias – a technical term –  and the Italian word for our English word ‘air’, meaning tune).  And they’ll be leaving out the long bits of dialogue (known as recitative – another technical term! ) that normally come between the arias. 

The recitative bits normally move the story on, (because you can sing narrative story-lines much faster than you can sing set-piece arias).  But who needs the story line when there’s so much lovely melody to indulge in? The other thing about arias is that they usually only have about 4 lines of text, which are repeated over and over, while the composer finds ever more beautiful tunes to set the same 4 lines to – so that’s hardly going to move the story on, is it?”

So there you have it, a quick guide to the opera. Hopefully you’ve learnt something in time for Sunday.  If you’re looking for tickets call the box office on +44 (0) 1327 360931 or click here for online booking.

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