Elaine Forrestal

And then there’s the opera.

Continuing to focus on the many different

ways a story can be delivered to its intended audience, I took a five year old and a two and a half year old with me to see the children’s opera, Rather Beastly at the State Library of Western Australia. What a great show!

The five musicians from The Lark Chamber Orchestra engaged and involved their young and not-so-young audience in the stories of Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel and an original tale involving a monkey trying to escape from the stealthy panther, the wide-jawed crocodile and a very unusual hairy beast of some indeterminate species. In the best pantomime tradition the audience was persuaded to warn the monkey whenever one of these creatures came too close. Of course these stories were all told in song and the audience was invited to echo some of the note-patterns that were an integral part of the telling. Finally the soprano, who had been keeping her trills within a manageable range, could not resist letting loose an amazing sequence of notes ending with a high that any diva would be proud of. Since there was no way the audience could repeat it everyone collapsed with laughter.

After such a funny, entertaining and intriguing show how could anyone not be hooked on opera?

A different story being presented as opera - Black Jack Anderson