Overflowing emotions. Blame Fidelio

22 May, '10

It’s taken me exactly 9 days to fall in love with Berlin. And when you consider that I was only there for 10 days, that was cutting it pretty fine.

The reason?

This was the reason:

These are two scenes of the excellently executed Beethoven’s Fidelio opera. As you can probably tell, it has been produced with a completely modern twist to it; unlike “traditional” operas where the performers wear period pieces and the whole ambiance is of a bygone age, the Komische Oper Berlin Fidelio’s production has had some modern elements inserted in it from props to method to I suspect the way its treated.

It was doubly more pleasurable for both my friend Tolkun Umaraliev and I as our seats were front and middle. On the first row. I swear that sometimes we could both feel the music and the voices reverberating in our chests, especially when the stage filled with over 100 singers some of whom came down from the stage and performed right in front of us, about a foot or so away!

And although the opera is in German, we could follow the dialogue quite well, no, not because we suddenly became fluent in German, but the opera seats had small LED screens built into them where the subtitles are displayed in synch with the voices! What a brilliant invention! I must confess that although I peeked at the translation once in a while, it wasn’t really necessary as you can follow the excellently expressive performances and get the gist of the story quite readily.

It was a very emotional experience for both of us. It was fantastic, easily one of the most memorable moments of my life and one that I would love to share with my wife. Gives me an excuse for another lightening quick trip out of Bahrain, and soon!

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