Much has happened in the last few days.
Yesterday, I sat in the Duet scene in Act 1. Mark warms up everyone and talks through what will be happening on stage, the chorus are in rehearsal only occasionally so the actors/Fates and principals really have to work hard and improvise around their absence. Haydn’s music really does move you to extremes. Mark explains the very human emotions that contrast with the implacability of the gods who are looking down on the mortals. In the next scene emotions swing to another extreme. There are many highs and lows in the opera.
There have been a number of media calls including Andrew Goodwin (in The Australian with due out Thursday 25th) and Elena Xanthoudakis (in Sydney Morning Herald, to be published TBC) . The Fates (three actors from NIDA) continue to impress with their beautifully moving and, at times, hilarious actions that complement the music and the drama so well.
Today, Genevieve Lang, our wonderful harpist work though the recits with Erin during the lunch break on her beautiful harp which is the first harp she ever played Genevieve tells me. Everyone associates the harp with the Orpheus story and its perhaps one of the reasons why so many composers used the legend as a basis for an opera. Erin has incredible stamina and is constantly bringing the best out of Elena, Andrew and Derek. They are all working so incredibly well together. He also has some funny sayings and accent take-offs. “I’m not going to micro-manage you on that phrase, but whatever you do I want it to be magical” he says to Elena and Andrew.
We have two interested and attentive work experience girls with us this week, Yasmin Stelling and Georgia Kerswill. They are helping out in all sorts of area including marketing, set building, costumes and as stage director’s assistants.
In the Opera Australia rehearsal space we are concentrating on music and blocking the action. Andrew Johnston and Brad Clark are working hard building sets; Alex Sommer and Corinne Heskett are busy with all sorts of things including fittings, hunting for material, sewing etc..
Tonight we had the full company in rehearsal with the addition of Cantillation. AMAZING. Another post...
Photos: The three Fates: Sean, Nick & Jake; Genevieve Lang and her beautiful harp; Director Mark Gaal and assistent director Sean Hall; Elena Xanthoudakis & Andrew Goodwin rehearse the duet scene - yum!; Elena directs Mark - Mark directs Elena; "Is it really only 2 weeks until opening?" Mark and Erin Helyard.