Being part of LA Opera 90012 means finding the musician within each of us and experiencing opera. As participants in LA Opera 90012, we all learn to love opera – and that means we know about The Magic Flute. (How can we not?) This Mozart masterpiece is quintessential opera that has it all: beautiful music and a creative, fantasy plot. As audience members, we follow Tamino and Papageno on their quest to find Pamina. We’re left to wonder what Mozart was thinking when he composed such a fantastic opera.
Past iterations of the opera have been traditional, complete with elaborate costumes, spoken dialogue, and lots left up to the imagination of the audience.
This production is totally different – in a good way.
This Magic Flute has been reimagined and redesigned to provide attendees with a new perspective on the themes of the story. The opera is inspired by 1920s silent film. The elaborate set has been replaced with a white screen on which animations are projected, and the spoken dialogue is written out like silent film title cards.
Watching this production is quite interesting. It has a great sense of humor and the design gives the production the freedom to explore new ways to depict character emotions. There is an amazing scene when Tamino confesses his complete love for Pamina. Projections allowed the producers to take risks and showcase Tamino’s love through animated hearts and images of Pamina reflected in an animated mirror. The show is perfect for seasoned opera lovers, who would like something different or those curious about opera before seeing the traditional (but no less inspiring) productions of Puccini’s Madame Butterfly and La Bohème.
Kendrick Shen is part of LA Opera’s 90012 program. He is a junior at South Pasadena high school and a lover of all genres of music from rock to pop to opera.