Eclectic new opera ‘Hagoromo’ premieres in New York

New York City, a perpetual spawning ground for new fusions of theatrical genres, offered up an intriguing mandeacutelange of opera, dance, puppetry, Japanese Noh-style theatre, and contemporary music all rolled up into one 90-minute production, and”Hagoromo,and” which premiered at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) on Nov. 3.
As part of BAMand’s and”Next Wave Festivaland” which continues to mix it up throughout November with eight genre-bending creations in their three theatres in downtown Brooklyn, and”Hagoromoand” puts together former New York City Ballet star-duo Wendy Whelan and Jock Soto, the International Contemporary Ensembleand’s (ICE) instrumentalists, opera singers Katalin Karolyi and Peter Tantsits, the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, and a creative team of composer Nathan Davis, puppeteer Chris M. Green, choreographer David Neumann, director David Michalek, set designer Sara Brown and fashion designer Dries van Noten.
Co-produced by American Opera Projects (producer and commissioner of new operas since 1988) and BAM, and co-developed with ICS (whose artistic director is multi-award-winning flutist Claire Chase), this version of the Noh play and”Hagoromoand” is Michalekand’s inspired response to reading a translation of it by American poet Ezra Pound.
The story is of an angel who drops her hagoromo (a magical, shiny mantel) to the earth, and the cloth is found by a poor fisherman. He reckons he can earn money with the valuable fabric. When she finds him, she tries to explain that she cannot fly without it and in fact, she will die without it. After some haggling, he agrees to give it back if she will perform a celestial dance for him. The storyline is actually a moral tale of choosing between selfless integrity and selfish personal gain.
The results of this unusual collaboration were visually arresting, musically aenturous, dramatically taut, and choreographically appealing. One of the most stunningly artistic components on the stage was Greenand’s life-sized puppets (two of which resembled Whelan), which were subtly blended into the choreography. A team of silent actors dressed in black operated the puppets, their own bodies becoming part of the creatures.
Michalekand’s clever use of stylistic features borrowed from the Noh theatre tradition matched up with Davisand’ imaginative and programmatic palette of live sounds, both accompanimental and soloistic, generated the tricky energy flow needed to animate an essentially slow-motion visual life. Whelanand’s ephemeral talents — her diminutive, featherweight presence was ideal for her role as an airborne angel — were clearly a consistent focal point of the piece. She was the cynosure of all eyes as she employed sinuously calibrated movements to reflect the Noh esthetic, while Soto, as her counterweight, used more angular and quicker actions, but still retained the essential eastern flavor.
The two singerand’s roles were tough challenges in terms of range and style. Tantsits and Karolyi employed their freakishly wide vocal ranges with both power and supreme subtlety throughout. The 20 girls of the youth chorus were astounding in their execution of a difficult score, which they had memorized. ICEand’s five instrumentalists, especially Chaseand’s use of several different types of flutes, poured out a continually fascinating soundscape that combined Japanese influences to the most avant-garde approaches. Chaseand’s use of audible breaths and ecstatic vocalizations alongside flute sounds in the scene where the angel finds her mantel in the hands of the greedy fisherman, wrought a wondrously expressive aria to accompany Whelanand’s desperation.
Van Notenand’s pastel vision: his soft coral-flavored fashions — used both on-stage and for the singers perched on a parapet a who killed thousands of people — on women who showed no resistance [to police officers] during the detention process although they didnand’t even know the charges being brought against them. andhellip No matter male or female, no citizen should be handcuffed arbitrarily just because he or she is a detainee. Those who gave the instructions for this, along with those who carried out the order, have committed a hate crime,and” andOztandurk said in the statement.
The Journalists and Writers Foundation (GYV) also issued a written press statement on Wednesday, saying that itand’s impossible to explain police operations targeting philanthropist women for political purposes neither by the law or the democratic rights and freedoms. and”Itand’s important to note that careless tyranny [of the government] targeting the women who serve their country and humanity only increases their courage and determination,and” the statement read.
Erdogan and his political associates have for some time accused the Gandulen movement of being a terrorist organization, despite the absence of any concrete evidence. Gandulen is a critic of the government, accusing it of being corrupt, engaging in favoritism and abusing religion for political and personal gain. Erdogan has relentlessly targeted Gandulen following a graft scandal that erupted in December 2013 and implicated members of his family and senior government officials.
An amendment passed in December 2014 makes it possible for the authorities to detain anyone on and”reasonable suspicionand” without any need for firm evidence. With the law, the threshold for the burden of proof required for obtaining a search warrant was reduced from strong and credible evidence to mere reasonable suspicion. The police are not only able to easily search any individual, home or vehicle, but can also easily seize the property of all suspects on the grounds of having committed a crime against the government.
h2Manisa police chief suspendedh2 Meanwhile, the Interior Ministry announced on Wednesday that Manisa Police Chief Tayfur Erdal Ceren was suspended as part of an investigation launched into the handcuffing of the detainees during the operation.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoilu also ordered an investigation into the incident. The Handurriyet daily quoted Prime Ministry sources as saying that Davutoilu ordered the investigation of police officers who took part in the operation for acting against laws and procedures during the detention of suspects in the operation.
The prime minister reportedly said everyone should be treated in accordance with procedures designed by the laws and their fundamental rights should be protected.

SOURCE: TODAY’S ZAMAN

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