Thursday, December 09, 2004

What is The Brazilian?

A one act opéra-bouffe in the style of the chamber works performed in the 1860s at Jacques Offenbach’s theatre, the Bouffes Parisiens, Hilliard and Boresi’s The Brazilian infuses the tuneful, playful tone of French operetta with contemporary melody and humor to create a satire of the modern opera world that moves at the break-neck farcical pace of Feydeau.

The Brazilian is an Opéra Bouffe in every sense of the term. From the delicately filigreed accompaniment to the Couplets, Triolets, Rondeaus and Scénes that are the hallmarks of the form; from the hilarious stock characters and situations of French farce to the irreverent spoofing of more serious operatic conventions, Hilliard and Boresi’s sixth opera marries the verve and excitement of Offenbach with the most sophisticated modern compositional techniques. Extremely challenging on many levels, the piece is a musical roller coaster ride through wild coloratura, languid Habanera, potent Bossa-nova and Samba, ravishing fin-de-siècle French harmony, and infectious ensemble. It is a musical confection that will reward performer and audience alike.