Opera Australia presents a rare and exciting opportunity to experience a chamber opera in an intimate setting this October when it performs the Melbourne premiere of a new production of Brian Howard’s Metamorphosis in an all new location, The Coopers Malthouse. this October.
Based on Franz Kafka’s engrossing tragedy of a man-turned-insect, Howard’s score, coupled with a libretto by Steven Berkoff, transforms the novella into an opera that is riveting, shattering and morbidly fascinating theatre.
In a new partnership with Opera Australia, The Coopers Malthouse Merlyn Theatre will provide an intimate setting, adding an edgy intensity this production. Led by conductor Paul Fitzsimon, the twelve musicians will be centre stage and the six singers will perform literally just metres from the audience.
Director Tama Matheson and designer Mark Thompson’s creative talents will combine to tell the story of social alienation in a modem, inhumane world. “Metamorphosis is an incredibly dynamic tale – one that can’t be buried. It is the ultimate in strange, alienating, dreamlike, and horrifying musings in modern life,” says Matheson.
The Melbourne premiere of this new production presents not only a chance to hear a rarely performed Australian opera by one of one of Australia’s leading composers, but also to marvel at the extraordinary talent of some of the country’s most exceptional singers, and the pure wonder of the operatic voice up close and personal.
Baritone Simon Lobelson will make both his Opera Australia and role debut in this production, performing the part of Gregor; a young man who, exhausted by the relentless demands of his work and family, awakes one morning to find himself unexpectedly transformed into a grotesque insect-like creature.
Mr Lobelson will star alongside a celebrated line up of Opera Australia principals including Julie Lea Goodwin, Christopher Hillier, Taryn Fiebig, Adrian Tamburini and Benjamin Rasheed.
Director: Tama Matheson Conductor: Paul Fitzsimon Featuring: Simon Lobelson, Julie Lea Goodwin, Christopher Hillier, Taryn Fiebig, Adrian Tamburini, Benjamin Rasheed, Orchestra Victoria Soloists Set & Costume Designer: Mark Thompson Lighting Designer: John Rayment
Merlyn Theatre – The Coopers Malthouse, Sturt Street, Southbank
Season: 25 – 27 October 2018
Information and Bookings: www.opera.org.au
Image: Simon Lobelson in Opera Australia’s 2018 production of Metamorphosis – photo by Prudence Upton