Stage Director

Bizet’s The Pearl Fishers – Opera Boston (2007) –

Visually, the audience at Friday night’s opening performance wasn’t disappointed. Opera Boston bathed the Cutler Majestic stage in magnificent colors and imaginative set design, bringing this story to life with great success.

Before getting to the performances, which were uniformly hypnotic, a word about the staging. Kudos to the stage directing of James Marvel, for making it all seem so natural, especially the opening scene where a lone figure suspended from wire descended gracefully from the rafters, as if swimming to the bottom of the sea to fetch one of the large pearls sitting on the ocean’s floor. The moment was truly mesmerizing and carried out with perfection, giving the impression that the entire scene was seen from outside a large glass-enclosed aquarium. These kinds of moments kept occurring throughout the show and added to the expectation and excitement of the performance as a whole and accounted for so much of its success.

For opera fans this is the ideal opera: colorful, melodic, and resonant with pleasing vocal melody and rich orchestration. This one is a winner, another feather in the cap for Opera Boston!

– Paul Joseph Walkowski,

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