Friday, February 23, 2024

There’s a fusion of flamenco and classical music coming to Victoria this February

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Theatre goers and opera lovers, this is for you!

The Pacific Opera Victoria is thrilled to present their next show, Osvaldo Golijov’s Ainadamar for four performances at the end of the month.

Opening at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, February 21st at the Royal Theatre and showcasing on the 23rd, 25th, and 27th, Ainadamar is “a nuanced and spicy tapa-sized delight” set during the civil war, filled with the passion and allure of flamenco.

Ainadamar dives into the true story of queer poet and playwright Federico García Lorca, where Golijov’s Ainadamar explores his life and assassination through the eyes and voice of his muse, Catalan actress Margarita Xirgu.

“For the first time in its history Pacific Opera brings you an opera set in Spain and South America sung in Spanish. Golijov’s music is an amalgam of musical styles incorporating traditional Western music with that of Flamenco, Sephardic chant, electro-acoustic, and Middle Eastern influences,” said Pacific Opera’s Principal Conductor, Giuseppe (Joey) Pietraroia.

“All of this gives us a work that is, rhythmic, raw, and fiery as well as intimate, introspective, and utterly beautiful. I am excited to be bringing this premiere to Pacific Opera audiences. I know they will be moved both body and soul.”

Featured in this new production, which was originally performed at Opéra de Montréal in 2023, the twice Juno-nominated artist, soprano Miriam Khalil will be returning to Pacific Opera to take on the role of Margarita Xirgu.

She has been celebrated by Pacific Opera audiences for many years and has been in works such as Ayre, Marzelline in Fidelio, Susanna in Le Nozze di Figaro, and many more.

Other cast members include Mezzo-soprano Hanna Hipp, who will be making her Pacific Opera debut as Federico García Lorca—a role she recently performed with Welsh National Opera. 

As described, Hipp has played a variety of trouser roles throughout her career, including Hansel in Hansel and Gretel, the title role in Fantasion and The Composer in Ariadne auf Naxos, which scored a high-praise review from Bachtrack.

Also performing is Neil Craighead, a bass-baritone that Victoria audiences will recognize from his recent Pacific Opera performance in the 2022 production of Bizet’s Carmen as Zuniga, where he makes his role debut as José Tripaldi. 

Come down to the Royal Theatre and listen to some enthralling music, watch local dancers from the Alma de Espaňa Flamenco Dance Company—choreographed by company founder Veronica Maguire, and revel in the awe-inspiring talent from the flamenco guitarists, and the seventeen all-female choir with six girls from the Victoria Children’s Choir.

Tickets start at $30 and will vary depending on seat selection. You can purchase them via the Royal Theatre or on the Pacific Opera website

Golijov’s Ainadamar at The Royal Theatre

  • Where: The Royal Theatre, 805 Broughton Street
  • When: 
    • February 21st, 23rd, and 27th at 7:30 p.m.
    • February 25th at 2:30 p.m.

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