Stage Director: Tomer Zvulun
Conductor: Mark Gibson
Set Designer: C. David Higgins
Costume Designer: C. David Higgins
Lighting Designer: Marie Barrett
Tamino: Mark von Arsdale/ James O'hanlon
Pamina: Jacqueline Brecheen/ Suna Avci
Papageno: Mark Davies/ Christiaan Smith-Kotlarek
Sarastro: Joseph Beutel/ Max Wier
Queen of the Night: Katelyn Lee/Shannon Love
Speaker: Hirotaka Kato/ Jesse Malgieri
Papagena: Jenny Kim/ Meredith Taylor
Monostatos: James Bennet/ Ben Werley
1st Lady: Alyssa Cox/ Amanda Woodbury
2nd Lady: Shareese Johnson/ Keriann Otano
3rd Lady: Melissa Block/ Kelly Glyptis
"The Magic Flute" charming and whimsical"
By Pierre Ruhe
For the Atlanta Journal Constitution
April 25, 2010
Mozart himself, in a dapper red coat and white powered wig, makes an appearance at the start of the Atlanta Opera's "The Magic Flute," one of many charming conceits in this convincing new production shared with Indiana University's professional-quality Jacobs School of Music.
In Tomer Zvulun's stage direction, the singers react naturally to each other and communicate directly with the audience. The almost-capacity crowd Saturday night laughed merrily at the jokes and cheered mightily when the music turned athletic and epic
It helps, too, that they had a good dragon. Puppets are in vogue in theater and opera these days, and this "Magic Flute," which premiered in Indiana in November, is wonderfully whimsical without being hollow -- a difficult balance.
The IU Opera theatre's production of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute,” Die Zauberflote is a wonderfully colorful evening of cleverness, wit and whimsy that doesn’t sacrifice a note of the music, the weighty messages that the Masonic Mozart include, or the humanity of his characters.
The new sets and costumes from David Higgins vary from the spectacular to the simple with lots of clever little variations. His costumes use a variety of color palettes, styles and textures to separate the characters and the groups clearly just as Mozart varied music does.
Throughout “The Magic Flute” stage director Tomer Zvulun has worked to see that the characters aren’t just stick figures who sing. There were nice little personal touches. The prince feels challenged and has his doubts. The bird catcher is a comic, but one with all too human concerns. The Queen of the Night is perhaps a misguided villainess, but she’s also a caring mother. There was plenty of action throughout. At the same time, Zvulun didn’t hesitate to stage a quintet with all five of the singers lined right up across the stage in a formal array.
Set, costumes are stars of "Magic Flute"
BY PETER JACOBI
HERALD TIMES REVIEWER
David Higgins who conceived and designed the sets and costumes, provided an eye-catching environment that envelops the action for Mozart’s timeless entertainment. Even the composer makes an appearance amid the clever happenings that animate the Musical Arts Center stage. Panels open, slide, lift, and fold to shape seemingly effortless scene changes. Canopies and backdrops lower and rise. Gardens, grottos and assorted props glide in and out.
And to help satisfy the fairy tale elements of the story, there’s a huge and squiggly dragon. There are birds that nibble and peck. There are full-sized, huggable animals. All, of course, are make-believe and brought to life by puppeteers
Higgins’ imagination has made everything possible. His cohort in this endeavor is stage director Tomer Zvulun, a young Israeli visiting from the Metropolitan Opera and elsewhere who sought ways to imbue this Mozart classic with the right blend of fantasy, magic, majestic ceremony and mirth. The team has managed to do so, with excellent help from Marie Barrett’s evocative lighting.