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MTL Opera - Hansel and Gretel

Now on its tenth annual production, the Atelier lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal turned to some creative collaborating with both the Nation...


Now on its tenth annual production, the Atelier lyrique de l’Opéra de Montréal turned to some creative collaborating with both the National Theater School of Canada, and the National Circus School for its fantastical production of Engelbert Humperdinck’s Hänsel and Gretel.

  

Based on the well-known Grimm fairy tale of two children losing their way in the forest, and coming across such colourful characters as the Dew Fairy, the Sandman, and a mouth-watering gingerbread house with a flesh-eating witch inside, this fresh and enchanting retelling is one of the few, if not only, operas we’ve covered that appeals to kids. 


And why not, with its light, refreshing melodies, and tried and true denouement of transporting children to a magically strange land inhabited by creatures doing all manner of Cirque du Soleil contortions…remind anyone of a particular Russian ballet?


Of note were the opera’s two strongest performances, that of the brother and sister themselves played by Emma Char, and Frédérique Drolet respectively, and while the pacing was swift at just over two hours with a twenty minute intermission, the narrative plodded through, and lacked any heightened moments of dramatic tension, including even the climax where the witch gets her due.  In sum, not enough going on but nice to look at. The End.

D.G.




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