09/27/12 - 1 Comment
An Evening at the Opera: Top Five Operas in NYC and London
Picture this: you’re all dolled up, wearing that delicious designer dress that you’ve been saving for the perfect occasion and you’ve got on that dazzling necklace your boyfriend gave you last week. You’ve just finished dinner at that new restaurant you’ve been dying to visit—the one that your friends have been trying to get a table at for weeks. Your lover, who’s looking especially dapper (no one need know that you helped pick out his outfit) has just hailed a cab and is helping you inside. Where, we wonder, could such a fashionably lucky lady be off to? The opera, of course!
While our men might dream of being surprised by tickets to the next football game, everyone knows that we ladies long for a more cultural sort of season pass. Honestly, what girl doesn’t fantasize about an evening out at the opera? This weekend, it’s high time we made this dream a reality. To help you out, we’ve come up with a list of the top five operas in NYC and London—shows that every socialite must see.
Julietta in London: September 27 to October 3
Romance, mystery and the possibility of insanity—Julietta most certainly has all the makings of a great show. This year, the English National Opera has decided to take on the production, bringing famed Czech composer Martinu’s operatic interpretation of the 1930s French surrealist play to life. The result is one of this season’s most stunning operas—a story about a man searching for his lost love. Only, as is often the case in great operas, things aren’t quite as they seem. Will Michel, our hero, ever find his girl, or is he a mad man chasing a phantom? We, personally, can’t wait to find out, especially with tickets starting at only £19.
The Magic Flute in London: September 21 to October 18
There are plenty of reasons why we’re dying to see this opera. First, this season, the English National Opera is doing The Magic Flute in English, making it the perfect opera for beginners. Second, and more importantly, we really love the plot. Part epic quest and part love story, The Magic Flute is the perfect mix of fairytale fantasy and comic routine. Add in a dash of symbolism and some great piano music and you’ve got all the ingredients needed to preform one of Mozart’s best love operas. And with tickets on sale for less than £10, The Magic Flute really is an opera you can’t afford to miss.
Pagliacci in New York: October 11 to October 21
This season, the Dicapo Opera Theater company is performing Pagliacci, a story of love. Don’t let that fool you though—Pagliacci’s not necessarily the most romantic opera to see on your date night. See, Pagliacci tells the story of an affair gone horribly wrong. Set up as a play within a play, Pagliacci follows the romance between the married Nedda and her lover (you’ll have to see the opera to get his name—you’ll find no spoilers here!) and Nedda’s husband Canio. Lust leads to sex, which ultimately leads to revenge and death. Tickets for Pagliacci are a tad more expensive than the other operas on our list—pricing starts at $50. But if you can afford the extra couple of bucks, Pagliacci is definitely an opera we insist you see. Passion, death and lots of misbehaving—count us in.
The Mark of Cain in New York: November 8 to November 10
We are particularly excited about Chelsea Opera’s world premiere of The Mark of Cain—mostly because, well, it’s the world premiere (and we love a good dash of never-before-seen culture). It’s a story based on the biblical tale of Caine and Abel—a story where one brother murders another (i.e., scandal, and lots of it). So, what should you expect? Well, since it’s the world premiere of the opera, there’s a fair bit of mystery surrounding The Mark of Cain. Personally, we’re hoping for a story of vengeance, love and murder of biblical proportions. Tickets, however, are surprisingly inexpensive—only $30 ($20 if you can use a student discount).
Aida in New York: November 23 to December 28
If you’re in New York and you’re looking to see opera at its finest, you really can’t miss The Metropolitan Opera’s Aida. Honestly, opera doesn’t get much better than this. Adia tells the story of forbidden love made all the more complicated by war. That, and Aida is set in ancient Egypt, so you know the costumes and set are going to be spectacular. Okay, on to the story—a delicious love triangle between Radamès (the warrior), Amneris (the princess) and Aida (the slave girl). Romance plus politics and a dash of hidden identity, and you’ve got one hell of an opera where the tickets start at $30.
Opera at BAM in New York
Excited about Aida but don’t feel like putting on your heels? Don’t worry, you can go see it at BAM on December 15. Wait—two Aida’s both done by The Metropolitan Opera going on at the same time? Well, not exactly. There’s one key difference: at BAM, they’ll be showing a video. Here are the details.
Even if we all fantasize about going to the opera, sometimes life and our schedules get in the way. But, if you’re in New York, a busy calendar shouldn’t keep you from enjoying this quintessentially elegant pastime, especially when BAM is showing a ton of The Metropolitan Opera’s performances on the big screen. Here, you get all the great music that you’d find at a live performance, minus the rather trying task of dressing to the nines. If you can’t make it to the live show, BAM’s The Met: Live in HD (part of the Next Wave Festival) is the next best thing.
So, this weekend, why not try an evening at the opera?