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Opera comes to Vail

Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera
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We love opera. It makes our lives seem no uneventful.

For the second season, the CineBistro in Vail’s Solaris is screening live opera from New York City’s Metropolitan Theater.

Because it’s live Saturday, it starts early – 10 a.m., seating at 9 a.m.



But because it’s in Vail’s CineBistro you can eat and drink wine and generally have lots of fun. If you travel to New York City to the Met, they won’t let you take popcorn or hotdogs into the theater – or even wine.

And in New York you have to deal with New Yorkers who’ll ask you if you live in a log cabin, then say something New Yorkish when you tell them, no, you do not live in a log cabin because that’s where you park your private jet.



“Opera can be a little intimidating. To sit in your local theater in familiar surroundings with friends will help make it a more comfortable experience,” says Jeremy Welman with Cobb Theaters.

And then there’s the broadcast itself.

When you’re sitting in an audience at the Met, it’s a great performance. But you’re getting one point of view, the one from your chair.



“During these live feed broadcasts you get six or seven points of view, Welman said.

Lots of people think they don’t like opera, but they’ve never seen it done like this, Welman said.

“This brings it to the people, instead of people having to go to it,” Welman said. “Bring in a full Metropolitan Opera performance is one of those things that are out of reach for many communities.”

Ann Loper was among those who caught the season opener, Donizetti’s “Anna Bolena.”

“It’s incredible to be able to have such great quality presentations in our community,” Loper said. “‘Anna Bolena’ was beautifully done.”

An encore performance of Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” is scheduled for 6:30 p.m., Nov. 16.

The Metropolitan Opera’s series, The Met: Live in HD, is in its sixth season and has won both Emmy and Peabody awards. It’s in 163 markets across the country in more than 630 theaters.

This is the second season for the Vail’s CineBistro and the second for live opera from the Met. It was popular during its rookie season, so they’ll keep doing it.

“It’s a way for the company to offer something you cannot get anywhere else,” said David Kempner, Vail CineBistro general manager.

The word is spreading about it, and they have people from surrounding areas rolling in, Kempner said.

Cobb Theaters has several CineBistros around the country and most of them are doing these live Metropolitan Opera broadcasts.

Vail’s CineBistro is the furthest west, but it’s hardly a pioneer outpost. The owner of Cobb theaters has a place up here somewhere and wanted to go to the movies – preferably his own.

Because the CineBistro is completely digital, they can screen all sorts of things, ranging from feature films, to Monday Night Football, to small independent films, to the Metropolitan Opera.

“We play as many films as we can, and we’re always looking for ways to broaden the entertainment we provide,” Kempner said. “The film industry is evolving just like the CineBistro menu is evolving, and we’re more than just films.”

This Saturday morning it’s the live broadcast of a new production of Wagner’s “Siegfried.”

“Siegfried” is part three of the Ring cycle. It focuses on his hero’s early conquests, while director Robert Lepage’s revolutionary stage machine transforms itself from bewitched forest to mountaintop love nest. Gary Lehman sings the title role and Deborah Voigt’s Brünnhilde is his prize. Bryn Terfel is the Wanderer. James Levine conducts.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or rwyrick@vaildaily.com.


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