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Night at the Opera
September 4, 2008 |
I attended Aida at the Seattle Opera this past week and once again during the grand procession I could hear your voice in my head singing, "No we cannot stop, stop at the Burger King. We will have some lunch at a nice restaurant that we know..." Everyone around me wonders why I am laughing during this very solemn part of the opera.
Do you sing along when you hear Aida? "Please stop kicking her or I will stop this car. I will stop this car and we'll turn right around and go home..."
I finally got to see "Aida" at the Met last season and no, Laura, I did not think of the Car Trip version that I did long ago on PHC, there was just so much going on on stage—a platoon of Egyptian soldiers marching in, a bunch of manacled slaves cringing and limping, and three horses—all of which we the audience were terribly grateful for, since it is not actually a great opera. Grand, but not great. My wife has commented on this phenomenon at opera performances, that the moment an animal or a small child walks onstage, the audience immediately perks up, you can feel the thrum of excitement in the crowd. Opera is show business and show business is a primitive art. I wrote the Car Trip song because that melody is so easy to sing and easy to put words to. You could do this yourself. You could do it while driving, simply invent new lyrics. I hope the Seattle production had a horse or two in it.