Monday, April 21, 2014

Barihunk Feast in Fort Worth: Pearl Fishers and Silent Night

Photos by Rachel Parker
The Fort Worth Opera Festival, one of our favorite stops on the opera circuit, kicked off the season with a stunning production of Bizet's Pearl Fishers featuring barihunks Lee Poulis as Zurga and Justin Hopkins as Nourabad. We should also mention that hunkentenor Sean Panikkar, of Forte fame, adds to the beefcake fest AND sings Nadir's beautiful aria "Je crois entendre encore."

Any opera directed by John de los Santos promises to be entertaining and an oft-static work like Pearl Fishers needs the touch of someone who can direct AND choreograph. De los Santos' non-stop action in the Mikado at the Festival in 2011 had audiences rolling in the aisles. We've heard that his dance scenes are magnificent. Throw in a shirtless Lee Poulis with his pants hanging low on his torso and you have an operatic feast for the eyes and the ears.

Justin Hopkins and the dancers from Fort Worth Opera's Pearl Fishers
The opera is the story of two men who fight over the same woman, make up and then fight over her again when she reappears. In between there is one of the most famous duets in all of opera and a beautiful aria for the girl Leïla. One of the men gives up his life to save Leïla and his friend. This was reality TV before reality TV.

There are additional performances on April 27 and May 2 and tickets are available online.

Dan Kempson, Lt. Gordon in Fort Worth's Silent Night
If two barihunks isn't enough for you, then you'll enjoy the next opera at the Fort Worth Opera Festival, which has four bariunks.  Kevin Puts' Silent Night will be performed on May 4 and 10 with barihunks Dan Kempson as Lt. Gordon, Aaron Sørensen as the French General, Craig Irvin as Lt. Horstmayer and Morgan Smith as Lt. Audebert.

Aaron Sørensen, the French General in Silent Night: "Il est mignon!"
The opera is based on the screenplay Joyeux Noël by Christian Carion and recounts a miraculous moment of peace during one of the bloodiest wars in human history. On WWI’s western front, Scottish, French and German officers defy their superiors and negotiate a Christmas Eve truce. Enemies become brothers as they share Christmas and bury their dead.
You can listen to the entire opera online at composer Kevin Puts' website. 

1 comment:

  1. Silent Night was an AMAZING show. I saw "Silent Night" when it was at the Academy of Music in Philadelphia and it was a touching show. It tugged on your heartstrings and the eye candy was nice too. Even if the eye candy was not there I'd still go back to see it again.