Saturday, February 7, 2015

L.A. Opera Goes For Broke Reviving "Ghosts Of Versailles"

Patti Lupone makes an entrance
It is reported that Tony Award-winning Broadway director Darko Tresnjak researched for over a year, including a trip to Petit Trianon, before staging the opera Ghosts of Versailles at L.A. Opera which opens this evening. Sets and costumes are estimated at $1 million, but other expenses would not be discussed including fees for over 80 dancers, singers and acrobatic artists. Even composer, John Corigliano, was flown from New York to Los Angeles for rehearsals because there are so many new notations in the score. Not to mention the luxury casting of Broadway superstar Patti Lupone in the exotic role of Samira that gets 10 minutes of stage time. A planned Met revival five years ago was called off for budgetary reasons. "A good part of the money for Ghosts is coming from a gift from the Ann and Gordon Getty Foundation. Gordon Getty, one of the sons of billionaire J. Paul Getty, is a composer in his own right as well as an opera fan. His representatives didn't respond to requests for comment. Ghosts has seldom been seen in its full grandeur since it debuted at the Metropolitan Opera in
Patricia Racette and Christopher Maltman
New York in 1991. In that staging, Corigliano called for two orchestras — one in the pit and one onstage — but he later reduced it to a single orchestra and made cuts for a 1995 staging at the Lyric Opera of Chicago. The composer also approved a scaled-down chamber version that has been staged at smaller companies. L.A. Opera's production, which opens Feb. 7, features the fullest version of the score that currently exists — not quite as long as the Met premiere but substantially the same work, featuring a full orchestra, according to company leaders." [Source] Tickets for the production are available here. See more beautiful photos after the jump and a complete gallery of 79 photos from the production by clicking here. To learn more about the opera, Ghosts of Versailles, go here.

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