Magazine article Opera Canada

Regina

Magazine article Opera Canada

Regina

Article excerpt

Aptly described by Pacific Opera Victoria Artistic Director Timothy Vernon as a "Broadway opera", the category-defying Regina is well worth seeing in spite of its flaws. This was the Canadian premiere of Marc Blitzstein's 1949 opus, and a compelling production it was: by the night of Apr. 24, performance values were almost beyond reproach.

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Perhaps because Blitzstein's intentions are so transparently noble, one is inclined to accept a piece that is not always pleasant. The characters are a nasty and vituperative lot in Lillian Hellman's 1939 play, The Little Foxes (upon which Blitzstein's work is based), and are no less obnoxious in the 1941 Bette Davis film from which Pam Johnson took her cue for her outstanding POV set design. A classic Southern mansion, but in shades of black, white, cream and grey, took on a faint sepia tint under Alan Brodie's ever-responsive lighting. Erin Macklem's costume design had everyone except Regina--she had splashes of color in her attire--clad in various shades of black, white and grey as well. It all made a handsome backdrop to Glynis Leyshon's deft and sensitive direction.

Only occasionally could the aptness of POV's production be niggled at. …

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