Carmen

Westacre Summer Theatre

Westacre Summer Theatre

This was the first time opera had come to Westacre Summer Theatre and it was a good start for the-all weather summer tent music and theatre venue.

To those not introduced to the summer theatre it offers something a little bit different to the theatre, or now opera, experience in a circular tent with the audience around the full circumference of the stage.

Space being limited, “technological advances” were used in place of the standard orchestra and, although this started off sounding a little like a fairground organ, the strength of Suffolk Opera's unusually large chorus for such a small production overcame it.

They chirped and bickered like the quarrelsome cigarette factory workers they were and danced and sung raucously when the scene called for it.

Louisa Petais, as the ill-fated flirtatious Carmen, slouched and mooched and seduced whilst Julian Ochwat, as Jose, gets slowly driven to distraction by her, belting his lines out perhaps a little too strongly at times. At times it was a little hard to see some of the action because of the size of the chorus and having a circular stage, but Nick Gee as Carmen's latest love the toreador Escamillo shone through with smooth and solid vocals.

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All in all it was a very enjoyable evening in a wonderful setting.

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