The Israeli Opera will be presenting the Baroque opera “Dido and Aeneas” by Henry Purcell. It's a colorful production produced by Cecile Roussat and Julien Lubek, who also were the designers and choreographers of the production. All the soloists in this production will be Israelis.
Dido and Aeneas is a fantasy that tells the mythological love story of Dido, the queen of Cartage and Aeneas, and the Trojan prince who conquers her heart and leaves her to die in despair. It is situated in the kingdom of the sea, in a colorful vibrant setting and is accompanied by appealing baroque music.
The orchestra of Dido and Aeneas will be the Barrocade ensemble that specializes in baroque music. The musicians are using their own-made instruments. In the core of the ensemble is a large basso-continuo group that provides good support for the higher instruments and the opera soloist. Ethan Schmeisser will be the conductor.
Dido and Aeneas follows The Tale of Tsar Saltan that was premiered this week. The Tale of Tsar Saltan by Rimsky-Korsakov’s Russian opera was yet another successful production. Based on a poem by Pushkin, telling the legend of three sisters, the Tsar, his chosen wife, his son Givdon and the swan that was almost magical.
While the setting appears simple, the use of colored lighting was impressive and enabled the stage to be versatile and different in each act. I counted at least 70 participants that were elegantly dressed in changing outfits, making each scenery impressive.
The soloists were excellent; they sang beautifully and also acted and danced. There was always some movement on stage, which made this a very engaging show. There was never a dull moment. This was almost a musical in terms of the performance. A very entertaining opera!
Dido and Aeneas, 1-11.6.2018