11 March 2016 at 4.00pm | 40 Comments
'We've repositioned [the opera] to between 1830 and 1840 - a very important period for feminism with the Brontës and all those amazing women like Mary Anning who were early feminists, fossil-hunters and scientists.'
‘We became very excited by the idea that there are some big scenes missing for Lucia', said the director. 'I have a very strong feminist agenda. My focus for this opera is 100% on the female characters - Alisa and Lucia. I wanted to find a way of explaining why Lucia does a lot of the things that she does and particularly why she goes so-called ‘insane’. We discussed the idea that we might stage the [usually off-stage] murder of Arturo. Once we’d let that idea out it was like Pandora’s box - all these other things fluttered up and we realized that we could provide a lot of additional data about what Lucia does while the male characters are singing about her.’
To enable this augmented storytelling, Katie and Vicki have opted for a split-stage design, where the action unfurls in two separate, but linked rooms for each scene.
'In terms of tone, we're trying to work with the musical score to support the intensity', said Vicki. We wanted to create dual environments that gave a real weight to the characters involved and a substantial sense of who these people are - they're not only a gothic set of characters but that they're really inhabited with a sense of existential romanticism.'
For Katie, this approach allows the audience to see ‘the bits of Lucia that I would really love to see as well as doing what normally happens.'
The Insight also included talks from Dr. Flora Wilson of King’s College London, American tenor Charles Castronovo and French baritone Ludovic Tezier and a performance by Korean tenor and Jette Parker Young Artist David Kim Junghoon, The event was presented by the Royal Opera's Head Staff Director Amy Lane.
Watch the full Insight event on-demand:
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