Scandalous Mozart opera comes to the Globe
For the first time this century, a fully-staged opera will be performed at the Globe Theatre in Palmerston North on March 1.
Cosi fan Tutte is one of Mozart’s best-loved and most scandalous operas, a battle of the sexes, in which two sisters, already engaged, find their heads being turned by a pair of intriguing foreign gentlemen.
Wanderlust Opera is taking ‘‘Cosi’’ on tour this summer to five smaller centres in the lower North Island, communities where audiences have few opportunities to experience opera without travelling a long distance.
Wanderlust is the brainchild of soprano Georgia Jamieson Emms, who’s from the small town of Featherston. After several years singing professionally in Germany, she returned home to start a family, and launched the production company last year.
Georgia says the word ‘‘wanderlust’’ is a nod to her years in Germany. ‘‘It refers to my passion for travel and specifically my passion from travelling with music,’’ she says.
Starting her own company had been in the back of her mind for a long time. She was inspired by what she saw in Europe from smaller companies and theatre groups, artists creating their own opportunities.
‘‘I knew I had to do something like that if I was going to continuing performing,’’ Georgia says.
This particular production of ‘‘Cosi’’ was first seen in 2008 as part of the Dunedin Arts Festival. For the 2016 tour, original cast members Emms (singing Fiordiligi) and Matthew Landreth (as Don Alfonso) return, as well as awardwinning director Jacqueline Coats.
Imogen Thirlwall (Despina) and Stuart Coats (Guglielmo), Jacqueline’s brother, have been recruited from New Zealand Opera, and Cameron Barclay (Ferrando) from the internationally-acclaimed sensation The Ten Tenors had a gap in his touring schedule.
Dorabella, the more wayward sister, will be sung by Emms’ own sister-in-law, Kiwi mezzo Brigitte Heuser who is based in Norway. It doesn’t happen very often that two sisters play two sisters in an opera. ‘‘It’s a treat to have Brigitte back in New Zealand and on the road with us,’’ says Emms.
Holding the musical reins is celebrated pianist and vocal coach Bruce Greenfield and the sets have been designed by Toi Whakaari design tutor, Brian King. Rehearsals began last month in preparation for the five centre tour.
With a sparkling new English translation, this is a fun, fresh and accessible show to satisfy opera lovers and entice newcomers. Wanderlust has started to wander again and Palmerston North is one of the centres that will benefit from it.
Cosi fan Tutte will be presented at The Globe on March 1 at 7.30pm. Bookings between 10-2pm at The Globe, phone 351-4409 or via The Globe website, www.globetheatre.co.nz
Georgia Jamieson Emms as Fiordiligi and Brigitte Heuser as Dorabella in a scene from Mozart’s opera Cosi fan Tutte.