May 9, 2018 by Jack Dziamba. New Post Goes Up Every Wednesday.
Opera is one of the Arts where, many, auto-reactively would say they “could never like Opera. Indeed it seems to be in vogue to proclaim an aversion to opera, no matter how many other art form one could proudly proclaim that they did like, and understand.
“An opera is a stage work accompanied by music in which all or most of the dialogue is sung. Opera was invented around the turn of the 17th century by a group of Florentine musicians who were trying to replicate the form of Greek theatre in which drama and music were combined.” allmusic.com
Opera Pro and Con
“Opera has attracted both supporters and detractors throughout its history and has sometimes been the target of intense criticism. Supporters have seen it as more than the sum of its parts, with the music supporting and intensifying the lyrics and action to create a genre of greater emotional impact than either music or drama could achieve on its own. Its detractors have viewed it as an artificial and irrational art form that defies dramatic verisimilitude. ” musicgenerelist.com
How Can One Approach Opera?
Opera can be approached in 3 Easy New Media Steps. After viewing the 3 videos below, ask yourself if you can now like opera?
This 3- step curriculum consists of Humor, Pageantry and Genius.
The Music – The Cold Song
The music is “The Cold Song”, (Music by Henry Purcell, Lyrics by John Dryden) from the Opera “King Arthur.” The plot is based on the battles between King Arthur‘s Britons and the Saxons, rather than the legends of Camelot . It is a Restoration spectacular, including such supernatural characters as Cupid and Venus The tale centres on Arthur’s endeavours to recover his fiancée, the blind Cornish Princess Emmeline, who has been abducted by his arch-enemy, the Saxon King Oswald of Kent. wikipedia
The lyrics are powerful, the music is haunting.
“What Power art thou who from below
Hast made me rise unwillingly and slow
From beds of everlasting snow?
See’st thou not how stiff and wondrous old,
Far unfit to bear the bitter cold,
I can scarcely move or draw my breath?
Let me, let me freeze again to death.”
Step 1. Humor
Step 2. Pageantry
Step 3 Genius