Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Andrea Chenier

Last night I went to the opera. Let me list the awesomeness, for fear that my words will otherwise get in the way:

* I went to the opera in Switzerland.
* I went to the opera in Geneva.
* I went to the opera for free!
* I sat in, literally, the best seats I have ever sat in at any show ever. We were 6th row from the stage on the floor, seats 1 and 2 - meaning exactly, exactly center.
* The heroine and the villain were amazing. The hero was good enough, but the other two had such chemistry, such expression, and such sparkling clear voices (and thanks to my synaesthesia, I do in fact literally mean sparkling) that I am still haunted by one scene that they had together towards the end.
* The Grand Théâtre - oh my goodness, I have no words for the extreme beauty and classical design of the interior - statues, trompe l'oeil, paintings, carvings, plaster work, gilding, everything. And like the biggest loser EVER I DIDN'T BRING MY CAMERA!!! I will forever kick myself for this, and try to remedy it by going to see a ballet there before I leave.
* I bought a glass of champagne at intermission. Just because I never have before and I don't know if I ever will again.
* The opera had a cast of about 80. This is because it was a professional production, which I have never seen live-and-in-front-of-me before. And the sets were incredible. So was the lighting. And the costumes. And the etc.
* Oh gosh, it was so wonderful.

Funny thing: Andrea Chenier is an opera about the French Revolution, but written in Italian. Which was funny, because, bring produced in Geneva where everyone speaks French, they'd be singing along in Italian and all the sudden drop a very Frenchly-pronounced French word or name, which made my listening-to-languages part of my brain have a hiccup. Then my brain would giggle. It tickled just a bit.

Everyone dies at the end. It's so romantic, lol.

The background to this story is simply that I am a part of an expats-in-Switzerland website called Glocals which basically works like Facebook, in that members join and create groups and host activities for which they send invites, etc. I've done a few things through them so far, including salsa dancing last week, and while it's cool to get out and do all sorts of different things, I am kind of uncomfortable with (a) hanging out with English-speaking expats, and (b) the idea that people need to look on the internet to do activities with strangers because they have no real-life friends. Which obviously simplifies it a lot, but I'm trying to make a point here. Point being: I'm uncomfortable with the internet. The end.

Back to the opera: this Japanese lady, who it turns out had lived in Montreal for two years a while ago, posted an event that said she had two tickets to an opera but the friend she had asked couldn't go, so were there any takers. Oh boy, I jumped all over that one. I didn't even realize it would be free until we emailed each other about the details. Huzzah! She was very nice and happy to have someone to accompany her, and I was like having conniption fits of joy over being a real live professional opera OMG, so it worked out really great.

The end. For real. The awesome, musical, sparkly end.

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