By Nathan Kleine Deters
Another season of opera begins as Pacific Opera Victoria kicked off its 2017/2018 season with the unique opera, Jenůfa, by Czech composer Leoš Janáček. Jenůfa follows the story of a young woman in love with the wrong man, and how the darkest events of life can somehow show where love truly lies.
The haunting music of Jenůfa encapsulates this dramatic story in a beautiful way, mixing in folk melodies, daring arias, and rhythmic, speech-like recitative. Each cast member performed admirably, with Lara Ciekiewicz, as title character Jenůfa, embracing the role and truly shining. Artistic Director, Timothy Vernon, beamed onstage during the curtain bows, showing how proud he was of the musical accomplishments that were achieved by his talented orchestra and cast on opening night.
Pacific Opera Victoria has proven itself once again to be a company that isn’t afraid of a challenge. With Jenůfa, that meant blending a twisted and horrific story into something to be enjoyed by all through timeless music. Soaring soprano arias, powerful tenor voices, and a flawless orchestral performance gave viewers something beautiful to take with them as they walked out of the theatre and back into the dark, cold night.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5