Wednesday, September 16, 2009

A Review: Lost in the Phantom's World

So that you can keep Jonelle and I (and our blogs) straight, I’ll briefly reintroduce myself; I’m Wendy German, a student at the University of Windsor pursuing my B.A. in English and Arts Management. I have a dance, vocal and theatre background and a love of the performing arts. As promised, a review of the Friday September 11th, 2009 evening performance of Phantom.

Phantom of the Opera is a spectacle for the senses. Christine’s naiveté and fear as she steps into the underground lair are almost palpable. The Phantom himself is a magician, manipulative and a monster, both literally and figuratively. The music continues to replay itself over in my mind and is eerie and beautiful. The full company singing Masquerade in elaborate, glittering outfits is a fitting backdrop to the Phantom’s dominate red, skull-faced pirate attire. There are so many moments to mention, the chandelier floating up to the ceiling of the opera house, far above the stage was brilliant. Even thought I watched it happen, it is still hard to believe, how do they do that? (I realize the answer is a wire, however this is an unromantic, logical answer and I prefer to think of it as the magic of theatre!) The evening ended with a standing ovation for the leads, notably appropriate in my opinion. There is still time for you to get lost in the Phantom’s world. The show is here until September 27th.

The next event at the Detroit Opera House is Verdi’s Nabucco. This is an opera about religious epiphany, ascension to the throne, sibling rivalry and a love triangle (what’s opera without a love triangle or two?). With some planning and a little luck I am hoping to view a rehearsal, as we get closer to October. I’ll also have to start thinking about a costume for the Haunted in the House/Opening night of Pilobolus evening; it will have to be something whimsical!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Maybe the Opera House is haunted by a Phantom...

With the arrival of Phantom of the Opera, it's only natural to invite you to come and find out if the Phantom really does haunt the House. So come and discover a secret passageway and even a dungeon at Haunted in the House this Halloween!

On Halloween 2009, 10:00p - 1:00am, the Detroit Opera House with be transformed into a haunted palace, inside and out, where everyone will be able to mingle, dance, drink and be merry!

If you're a true Halloween Spirit, you can dress up to enter one of the House's costume contests and win some pretty awesome prizes.

Not only will this event be THE place to be on Halloween, but it is also a great way to support that local arts/entertainment community! “Launching Haunted in the House is a way to try and re-engage the young people that may attend one of our larger events like BravoBravo!,” says MOT Director of Development Mary Parkhill. “We want the next generation of arts supporters to begin to take ownership of the Detroit Opera House, too." All proceeds from Haunted in the House will go to support the dance and opera programming at the world-class Detroit Opera House. Tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster.

Tickets for Haunted in the House are $35 general admission and $75 VIP tickets that include access to a VIP lounge with an open bar and hors d’oeuvres for one hour, an Opera House Dungeon Tour and valet parking. Guests must be 21 or older, please.

Sounds like a GREAT time to me! See you there!


Thursday, September 10, 2009

And now for the other intern!

As stated previously, Wendy is one of the new interns here at the Opera House and I, Jonelle Pariseau, am the other. :D I graduated from MSU this past May with a Bachelor of Arts in communications and public relations. I also have an extensive dance background that has recently come to include being the Owner/Artistic Director of Studio 8 Dance Arts Center of Southeast Michigan LLC. The studio is a new venture that allows me to continue my passion for the dance arts, which is the main reason I was so excited to receive the position here at the Opera House.

I think it might go without saying, but I really enjoy going to the theatre. My favorite show that I've seen recently is Avenue Q. It is a great show for the twenty-year-old-crowd - VERY funny! I also LOVED RENT. I guess it rubbed off on how much I liked it since Rebekah, our supervisor, gifted me a RENT poster this morning :). (It's gonna look great in my room!)

The Detroit Opera House / Michigan Opera Theatre have a great Dance & Opera season ahead. With shows like Phantom, Nabucco, and The Nutcraker, everyone will be able to find som reason to come down to the Opera House!

Stay posted as Phantom has just opened (September 8-27)and there will be tons of 'insider happenings' you'll want to know about!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A Haunting Tale...

My first day as one of the new interns here at the Detroit Opera House was even better than I anticipated. My name is Wendy German. I am an English major as well as pursuing my Arts Management Certificate at the University of Windsor. I will be seeking a career in the theatre/entertainment industry upon completion of my degree. First up was a grand tour of the beautifully restored Opera House. There are so many amazing spaces, lounges, rehearsal halls, staircases and of course the spectacular stage. There was even a secret passage, slightly unnerving when the current show is about a Phantom haunting an Opera House!

Since I have only seen the movie, I am thrilled to be seeing Phantom of the Opera, the musical, for the fist time on stage. A real connection grows between the actors and audience during live theatre so I am expecting to be both mesmerized and enchanted! In anticipation I have been looking up lyrics, and listening to the music. I confess I even changed my screensaver to a picture of Christine and the Phantom. Here are some particulars that might interest you about the touring production that opened here last night. The chandelier is 1,000 pounds (it is massive, I went and peeked) and has 35,000 beads and 50-radio controlled lights. There are 165 wigs used to compliment the 230 costumes for the show. I’ll post again once I have seen the production and let you know what I think. I hope you get a chance to see for the first time, or indulge again in the haunting tale of seduction and despair.