Stage Director

Monteverdi’s Return of Ulysses – Wolf Trap Opera Company (2009) – Baltimore Sun

Wolf Trap Opera’s dynamic blast from past: Monteverdi’s ‘Return of Ulysses’

If you harbor any doubts about the ability of early opera to engage your senses, you could get an easy attitude adjustment from a trip to Wolf Trap. There, Monteverdi’s The Return of Ulysses is receiving a dynamic production from the Wolf Trap Opera Company.

Visually hip (but not overbearingly so), the staging, directed with abundant imagination and momentum by James Marvel, provides an engaging vehicle for a cast that treats the opera as if it were written last week, not in 1640. No one held back. No one settled for history lesson primness. Eric Allgeier’s sleek set design was complemented by S. Katy Tucker’s video projections, which introduced often striking imagery without ever getting gimmicky. The total package of engaging musicality and theatricality underlined how much power remains in this absorbing work from the dawn of opera.

– Tim Smith, Baltimore Sun

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