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Saturday

I had a lovely time at owlmoose's Moose Day tea. owlmoose and her friends originally started Moose Day as the Friday after Thanksgiving and you always have a tea. I think it's a fine tradition. We celebrated a week early because anzubird and luvmoose were in town.

I also enjoyed hanging out at solomita's afterwards. Then we all went to Supenkuche and met C and my dad and ate hearty German food.

Afterward C, my dad and I saw Fidelio. I've heard Fidelio can be wonderful, but neither the singing nor the music of this performance moved me. C said "I can see why Beethoven only wrote one opera." That seems rather harsh to me, because this was just one performance.

Christine Brewer the heroine Leonore/Fidelio sang with neither the range nor the depth to make me believe she would die for her husband. She stood like a man throughout the entire show even after she had revealed she was a woman. In fact when she pulled off her cap to reveal short hair, I think it took the audience a little bit to realise "Oh, that's right she's a woman." I think the role calls for a bit more vulnerability that she portrayed. And certainly better acting. The best singer Thomas Moser as Florestan the prisoner convinced me how horrible prison life that even though his portly frame indicated that he was clearly well-fed. Unfortunately the singing of Juha Uusitalo who played Don Pizarro the villain of the opera lacked the power to creep me out and at times was drowned out by the orchestra. In fact at times it was rather pathetic, because portly Florestan was singing over Don Pizarro.

The staging did a great job of portraying a grim prison setting, but was otherwise awful. Fidelio and Florestan are supposed to drive off Don Pizarro, except the way it was staged, the two singers were left singing in the dungeon and the door was closed behind them. So instead of reveling in the moment that they're free, you're worrying that they're trapped in the dungeon. Then finally the stage changes and they're out in the sunlight. Phew! What a sigh of relief. The opera's almost over. Though the denouement was gorgeous and made me wish that the rest of the opera had been as good. Though I also had to admit it was also the most symphonic part of the entire opera.

We've seen all the operas for the fall season so we won't be going to the opera again until June.