Humour, love and tragedy at the opera

It can be daunting taking children to the Opera. Why are we going? Three hours of singing … it’s boring … it’s in Italian, German … I don’t get the story … what is it about?

At 11.00pm as we returned to school, 19 children were asking “when can we go again?” and “what’s the next one we will see?” They loved the whole experience.

On Wednesday 20th September the senior girls and two boys went to see, live streamed from the Royal Opera, The Magic Flute, the epic battle of good versus evil. The trials of Tamino and Pamina as they learn about life, love, trust and responsibility. The wisdom of Sarastro, the evil of the Queen of the Night, the horror of Monostatos and the humour of Papagena and Papageno. Light conquers darkness with magnificent evils, dramatic music … and what a fantastic production.

La Boheme depicts ordinary people struggling to survive in the Latin quarter of Paris. Incredible music accompanies humour, love and tragedy. The children were enthralled by Musetta, who appears bad and yet is revealed as having a good heart. The final death scene of Mimi is heart-breaking. Consumption, all too common in the 1890s is the tragic shadow constantly present from the moment she meets Rodolfo as he sings the famous aria ‘Your Tiny Hand is Frozen’.

The musical depiction of life’s great battles has certainly impressed the children. So what next? La Traviata, Nabucco, Tosca or Carmen? There are a number being live streamed to Stirling University and when the next appropriate date is available we will certainly be present. (Mr Davey)