Magazine article Opera Canada

Winnipeg

Magazine article Opera Canada

Winnipeg

Article excerpt

In an age when the demise of the TV daytime drama seems imminent, leave it to The Little Opera Company to give one last kick at the soapbox.

Billed as a "soap opera parody," American composer Douglas Moore s Gallantry, with libretto by Arnold Sundgaard, pokes fun at the wacky, time-honored genre itself. The comic chamber opera, directed by Leith Clark, was staged at historic Old St. James Anglican Church Aug. 3. The company last performed the 35-minute work at the 2001 Winnipeg Fringe Festival. It's one of Moore's more enduring stage works after The Ballad of Baby Doe, and received its first professional production in Detroit in 1962.

Scheming Dr. Gregg (Scott Hraun) has fallen in love with anesthetist Lola Markham (Margot I larding). In turn, she is engaged to appendicitis patient Donald Hopewell (Mark Patson). who unexpectedly turns up on the operating room gurney. Dr. Gregg must grapple with his own conflicting feelings as he ominously asks for the scalpel. As with any good daytime serial. Announcer (Donnalynn Grills) periodically cuts in with bluesy, sung commercials extolling the virtues of Lochinvar Soap and Billy Boy Wax, "the waxy wax that spells relax. …

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