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AKHNATEN at London Coliseum

April 9, 2016

The ENO production of the Philip Glass opera AKHNATEN at the London Coliseum was spellbinding in its magnificence. This production is the High temple of theatre.

“According to the composer, this work is the culmination of his two other biographical operas, Einstein on the Beach (about Albert Einstein) and Satyagraha (about Mohandas Gandhi). These three people — Akhenaten, Einstein and Gandhi — were all driven by an inner vision which altered the age in which they lived, in particular Akhenaten in religion, Einstein in science, and Gandhi in politics.”

I have always been drawn to Ancient Egypt since I was a child and I found this performance revelatory. The meditative Philip Glass score enables the mind to draw together and contemplate existing experiences and knowledge, and this combined with imagery from this production creates a platform to develop true wisdom. Phelim McDermott of “Improbable” elevates the role of the chorus by integrating the skills of acrobats and jugglers adding to the epic nature of this production.

However there is nothing I have ever experienced which could quite compare to the voice of Countertenor Anthony Roth Costanzo. He brings an ethereal quality to Akhnaten which seems to transcend time and place. Spiritual.



From → Theatre

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