The new Season of HD Live from the Met opens at 9:55 a.m. Saturday with Bellini’s monumental ‘bel canto’ (beautiful singing) opera Norma.
The opera is set in the forests of Gaul (France) among the Druids, members of the Gallic/Celtic priesthood, at the beginning of the Roman occupation. Norma leads a double life as the lover of the Roman proconsul and as the Druid priestess.
The story examines an ageless and archetypal situation: a powerful woman compromises her ideals for love, only to find herself betrayed by her lover.
But equally gripping is her relationship with Adalgisa, the younger woman who is now her rival and in whom Norma sees her second self.
The title role demands dramatic vocal power and agility and poses a daunting challenge that every soprano strives for but few can rise to. Those who succeed, Maria Callas, for example, become part of operatic lore.
This opera is an extraordinary fusion of sublime melody, vocal challenge and dramatic power. Bellini’s clear score with Felice Romani’s libretto moves the drama along with vigorous rhythm and informs certain moments with intense feeling and emotion.
The Metropolitan Opera’s Emmy-Award winning series continues in Salmon Arm for the 10th season thanks to the vision of the Salmar Community Association.
Area residents can take a bite out of the ‘Big Apple’ in the comfort of the Salmar Classic without the expense of travelling to New York City. English subtitles, close ups of the action, interviews with the artists and a peek at the amazing scene changes during intermissions are features of the high definition transmissions.
Opera-lovers are fortunate to be able to enjoy the ultimate creative challenge – opera combines music, words and drama. There is something for everyone from seasoned opera lovers to newcomers and young audiences with Mozart’s The Magic Flute on Oct. 14.
Check out the Salmar website http://salmartheatre.com/ for all the productions, times and prices. The Shuswap Arts Council offers $5 ShuGo tickets for youths ages 12 to 21. See ‘events’ at www.salmonarmartscentre.ca.