(image courtesy of bam.org)
Well, I attended the dress rehearsal of Handel's opera, Hercules, and really enjoyed it. Many thanks to Joe Carver and Arthur Haas for helping make this possible. The singers were amazing, and I especially liked the the work of the two female leads, Joyce DiDonato as Hercules' wife Dejanira and Ingela Bohlin as his captive Princess Iole. My ignorance of the operatic world in general means that I'd never heard of either of these singers, but they were both just fabulous. I, of course, paid a lot of attention to the work of the harpsichord continuo player, who was really awesome. I loved his lead-in flourishes between certain numbers and his strong playing overall. It was a real treat to hear someone so experienced play this music.
The emotional element of the production was quite intense, which I loved. The scene where Iole is lecturing Dejanira about jealousy being a destructive force in one's life was brilliant. There was also a real "Jerry Springer moment" when the two women lunged at each other and were then pulled apart because, of course, Hercules was philandering with Iole and Dejanira was pissed.
The only regret I had was that I had to leave at intermission, or else I wasn't going to get home until after midnight, and I was exhausted from a whole day of working at my soon-to-be-over day job. What I saw was really excellent, and I am grateful for the chance to see such a wonderful production of Hercules.