music theatre/opera

Sweat, the opera

An a cappella opera about the fast fashion industry with nine singers

Composed by Juliet Palmer with a libretto by Anna Chatterton

Produced by Bicycle Opera

For more information take a look at the Bicycle Opera website

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Boots

BOOTS is a site-specific opera installation produced by Urbanvessel at Opera Peep Show. Presented by the amazingly monikered LIEDERWÖLFE (SongWolves) at the Campbell House, April 28-30, 2016

 

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Fruits of the Earth

Devised and directed by Banuta Rubess.

Music by Nic Gotham

 

Part of an evening including GIFT PACKAGE  by composer Ģirts Bišs.

Performed by the Latvian Radio Choir and the Riga Saxophone Quartet Conducted by Kaspars Putniņš at the Latvian National Opera, New Hall.

 

Inspired by the fantastic cooking of Latvia's best chef Mārtinš Rītiņš.

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The Birds' Opera

Directed by Baņuta Rubess

The Birds’ Opera is an opera for children which has been sell-out hit at the Latvian National Opera since it opened on December 22, 2000. The production has been revived many times, and is still running today,in 2016.

 

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Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat

Music by Andrew Loyd Webber

Lyrics by Tim Rice

Directed by Baņuta Rubess

Latvian translation by Inese Zandere

 

Originally written as a pop cantata in 1968, Joseph is an iconoclastic version of the Biblical story which delights both children and their parents. The Rubess version was a hit at the Daile theatre in Riga through two whole seasons.

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Oh Pilot

A chamber opera for four singers

Libretto and direction by Baņuta Rubess

Music by Nic Gotham

Oh Pilot is a cosmic love story.  A jilted Pilot meets a heartbroken Tourist as they wait for a midnight flight with Coconut Tours.  Two angels, masquerading as a Flight Attendant and a drunken Businessman, torment the lovers with anxious premonitions.  Love prevails, and the Pilot and the Tourist fly away into their dream world.

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The Snow Queen

By Hans Christian Andersen

Adapted and scored by Canadian composer Patrick Cardy

Translated into Latvian by the ensemble together with Anita Bajāre

Patrick Cardy's The Snow Queen is an extraordinary work: intended for children, it combines a solo actor with a string quartet.

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Escape from Troy

Devised and directed by Banuta Rubess.

With music by Nic Gotham.

With texts from Euripides, Seneca, Ingrida Vīksna, and the oral history of Latvian refugees in World War II.

 

As Latvia became a battle-ground at the end of World War Ii, civilians were urged to evacuate. However, where to?  Many families decided to escape the war by climbing into boats and fleeing to Sweden, risking their lives.  This production weds the story of the Latvian boat people with the story of the Trojan Women - while Troy burns, and the Greek ships wait to take them away as slaves,  the women search for a way out.. a way to escape...

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Orfeo ed Euridice

By Christoph Willibald Gluck

Direction by Baņuta Rubess


The baroque opera Orfeo ed Euridice was Rubess' first foray into classic opera on a large stage. The tragic story of Orfeo searching for his Eurydice in the underworld was inspired by a Duane Michals photograph of a man, stricken with grief and loneliness, sitting on the edge of his bed.  The journey to the underworld took Orfeo to the edge of a satellite, probing the vast and unresponsive universe.

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Nigredo hotel

A chamber opera for two singers

Direction by Baņuta Rubess

Music by Nic Gotham

Libretto by Ann-Marie MacDonald

 

A Hitchcock style thriller for baritone and soprana, Nigredo Hotel is a journey into the subconscious. A stressed-out neurosurgeon is tormented by the owner of a sleazy hotel.  In Room 7, Raymond is forced to confront the dark recesses of his mind.  He is rewarded by the arrival of glorious Wisdom.

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OPERA TO GO – 1 and 2

15 minute chamber operas for two singers

Direction by Baņuta Rubess

Music by 9 composers

Libretti by 7 authors

 

Produced by Tapestry Opera Works, Opera to Go was a heady introduction to new opera. The first Opera to Go explored themes ranging from incest to haiku, while second moved from the story of a tormented Goya to the first woman to climb Mt. Everest. Together with conductor Wayne Strongman, Rubess worked with all authors and composers as a dramaturge as well as director. When the operas were staged at the Distillery, she mounted each opera on a different stage, inviting the audience to move from one experience to the other.

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The Gypsy Wife

Song and dance theatre

"Where, where, where is my gypsy wife tonight?
I've heard all the wild reports, they can't be right."

From 'The Gypsy's Wife' by Leonard Cohen

The Gypsy Wife is a theatrical affair about the bonds of love and the weights of sex. As the Gypsy Wife, singer Patricia O'Callaghan picks through the landscape of sexual betrayal and adventure, and finds herself in rumpled beds, in the belly of a Mexican bus, in a tired cafe, at the bottom of the sea... Working with choreographer Julia Aplin, dancer Robert Glumbek plays her husband, questioning, desirous, hating, loving. The extraordinary Gypsy Wife band plays a variety of roles, including, of course, her lovers. Camie Koo's set is a witty and surreal venue for sex and fury, where the 'silver knives are flashing in that tired old cafe.'

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