Dorset - Talk by Adrian Thorpe - How Opera Works
Thursday 4 March 2021, 7.30pm to 9.00pm GMT
Save the Date: The Cambridge Society of Dorset welcomes alumni and guests to join them for an online talk by Adrian Thorpe on How Opera Works
Adrian Thorpe (Christ’s, m. 1961) has been an opera-lover ever since, as a child, he was taken to an amateur performance of Hänsel und Gretel at the Cambridge Corn Exchange. He is especially interested in the historical, economic, political, and social context which influenced the writing of individual works ever since opera was invented by a group of amateurs in Florence in 1597 – and also the practical considerations of how theatres functioned, how performers worked and were paid, and how audiences behaved. In retirement, he supports Dorset Opera by giving illustrated lectures on operatic themes at their “Bluffers’ Lunches”. Or he did until such social events became impossible! He now writes a monthly illustrated piece for Dorset Opera’s website under the heading “Try This One”.
In this lecture he hopes to show how operas work as dramatic presentations: how musical passages acquire special meanings reinforcing and enriching the drama in a way that a spoken play on its own cannot. “Opera is the only dramatic form (he says) which can show you at the same time not only what the characters are saying and doing, but also what they are thinking and feeling – even if they haven’t yet fully understood that they are thinking and feeling it.” The talk will be illustrated with subtitled video excerpts from live performances. He hopes it will intrigue those who know little of opera while entertaining those who already know all about it.
Please email the Cambridge Society of Dorset using the link below for the Zoom login details
This event has been cancelled.