Y IS A QUESTION I KEEP ASKING is a 50-minute opera installation, a 'micro-opera' in five acts with prelude and coda, performed by string sextet, two sopranos, a mezzo-soprano, a tenor, a bass and six male actors.
The piece is assembled from some of the 'canary-fancying' opera fanatic's most beloved songs, all hits, stripped from their safe space of tradition and ballast.
Y IS A QUESTION I KEEP ASKING accumulates situations: an antiquariat, a sauna, a bomb shelter, a dive bar, a temple. The songs are addressed to us: pleas, prayers, promises, seductions, laments. They are beautiful, melodic, aching.
Into these worlds we are the invader, the infidel, the barbarian - the songs refer regularly to a kind of other, to be cast off. We look deeper into the room, start to make out our reflection in it, perhaps something deeper, into ourselves - what is our fantasy? What are our desires? In a place where we don’t necessarily know the rules, the customs. We observe but are also there, inside. Furtive glances, hot bodies, obfuscation. The performers themselves are very still. The musicians are gatekeepers, occupying a world afraid of disturbing itself. Their retreat into a fantasy of the past recreated risks calamity. The dust settles, the lights come up…
Y IS A QUESTION I KEEP ASKING probes Western culture as a composed world, composed largely by men who dream of women and outsiders as other, both titillating and terrifying, a culture whose material is fine but finite and fundamentally elusive, corrupt. The homogenous and homonormative are exposed as destructive othering impulses that neuter a capacity for radical rethinking.
Ultimately, it’s an event of short duration full of beautiful music performed live by a string sextet with voices, with handsome men in towels.
Marie-Gabrielle Arco, Mezzo-soprano
Soriane Renaud, Soprano
Lona Mohr Villadsen, Soprano
Gastón Efficace, Tenor
Max van Wyck, Baritone
Glen Sheppard, Director / Designer
Lars Straehler-Pohl, Conductor
Music from Handel, Bellini, Saint-Saens, Dvorak, Strauss, Monteverdi
*All text surtitled in EN / DE
3 May 2019 20.45-21.45
4 May 2019 20.45-21.45
Tickets €12 at the door