“There on the fountain’s edge, the shadow appeared to me. I could see her lips moving as if speaking and with her lifeless hand she seemed to call me. For a moment she stood there motionless, then she vanished all at once, and the water, earlier so limpid, had grown red, as if with blood.” – Lucia in Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor
With these words, Lucia shows the world her thin grip of reality, showcasing her slip into madness later on in Donizetti’s tragic Lucia di Lammermoor. Opera is filled with such haunting moments and characters, some that are so powerful, they are difficult to forget like the above Lucia scene, or others that are truly terrifying, such as the characters in Howard Shore’s The Fly (2008).
To celebrate Halloween during our 30th Anniversary Season, we have selected 30 haunting LA Opera images. Below are images from three productions that horror junkies should know about. Other images in this series have been uploaded to our #LAO30Images: Halloween Edition Pinterest Gallery.
“The time had come for me to attach myself to a new form.” – Composer Howard Shore on his score for The Fly
LA Opera presented the U.S. premiere of The Fly in 2008. Based on David Cronenberg’s 1986 cult horror classic, The Fly follows the story of an eccentric scientist, who while working on a teleportation device, accidentally fuses his DNA with that of a fly’s. As a result, he slowly turns into a fly, terrifying those he loves.
“Our monster is not an innocent of dumb brute. He is an artist and a thinker trapped in the body of beast.” – Director Julie Taymor on the character of Grendel
LA Opera presented the world premiere of Grendel in 2006. Based on the novel of the same name by John Gardner, the opera follows the story of the titular monster and his war against the humans that shunned him. He gobbles up his enemies throughout the show, in attempt to reconcile his idealized view of humanity with the realities of “modern man.” The opera is a fable with very real world connections.
The Damnation of Faust
“Faust embodies man in our modern industrial society; he is a self-sufficient, intellectual egocentric who has romantic ideas and longings. He strives for the independent loneliness, for power and control over the world (performances and science), and for conquest and possession (love). It is a vicious cycle that ultimately leads to the destruction of man and world.” – The Damnation of Faust Director Achim Freyer
The 2003/2004 season opened with an emotional journey into the mind of Faust. Hector Berlioz’s The Damnation of Faust, directed by Achim Freyer, created a stir in the way it connected modern audiences with the tragic tale. Faust is led down a sinful path by the diabolical Méphistophélès, losing his love Marguerite in the process.
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