9 czerwiec 2005
Upworld
OPERA: Der Rosenkavalier
remarkable set and costume design by artist Gottfried Helnwein.
Los Angeles is blessed with a wealth of talented artists
Los Angeles is blessed with a wealth of talented artists who make their home here, and the LA Opera has benefited from this rich local talent pool, having had opera sets designed by artists like David Hockney and operas directed by great Hollywood directors. This production of Der Rosenkavalier was directed by Maximilian Schell, and with remarkable set and costume design by artist Gottfried Helnwein.
Taking the original sense of roccoco "over-the-top-ness" and recreating it in a thoroughly modern way, Helnwein designed fantastic costumes that were a Tim Burton-esque Mardi Gras carnival. The sets and costumes were washed in an evolving color theme, with Act I being done all in shades of blue (except the Baron who stood out in gold), Act II being done all in shades of gold (except the Baron in red), and then Act III being done all in shades of red (except the Marschallin in a luminous light blue). These changing shades blended in fanciful ways from the set to the costumes to the make-up on some (the royal servants in the first act looked like the Blue Man Group), and always in the color of the young Count's hair (blue, then gold, then red).
As the Marschallin declares in the last act, it was "all a Viennese farce", and these fanciful design choices reinforce that theme delightfully. The farce is perfectly balanced with the emotion of the love triangle, beautifully acted under Schell's direction, and with Kent Nagano masterfully evoking Strauss's sublime music. As the young lovers turn to each other in the end, the Marschallin accepts that her time has passed, and that you can't hold on to life's beautiful experiences, you must accept their transient nature and let them go. Even after four and a half hours of this opera, the audience last night was reluctant to let it go, and gave a standing ovation with several curtain calls.




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