By Nicola Boys
Madam Butterfly is a powerful story of unrequited love, human pain and suffering which is magnificently intensified by Puccini’s glorious music, promising a night of drama and emotion. Inspired by Puccini’s fantasy landscape of exotic pleasures, Lindy Hume’s new production interprets it through a dystopian prism.
This week, New Theatre Oxford is hosting the Welsh National Opera for 'Madame Butterfly' and the 'Barber of Seville'. That Oxford Girl were lucky enough to be given two tickets to both press nights and so, full of anticipation, I walked from my college to the gorgeous theatre. We enjoyed a glass of wine, and then took our seats, only five rows from the front! The heavy red curtain rose and the show began.
Madame Butterfly was first written as an opera in 1904, but even in 2021 it grasped a full audience's attention. The set was modernised, a white house turning on the stage to show every angle of the performance, and the costumes almost futuristic. 'Butterfly' herself gave a spectacular performance, receiving rounds of applause. The lighting was used to incredible effect, with dawn clearly creeping as Mr Pinkerton climbs the hill after three years of departure, and butterflies being cast with light on the stage as they marry. The orchestra complemented each scene with enchanting music, and themselves received a standing ovation.
When the opera comes to Oxford, it is certainly a performance to behold!
With Madam Butterfly until the 11th November and The Barber of Seville on 12th & 13th November, the New Theatre Oxford is bursting with beautiful operas: https://www.atgtickets.com/shows/welsh-national-opera-madam-butterfly/new-theatre-oxford/