BALLAM SCORES WITH TRIO OF PUCCINI ONE-ACT OPERAS
By Charlie Schill,
The Herald Journal
Published: Thursday, July 14, 2016
As the opening pitch of a Utah Festival Opera & Musical Theatre season filled with the promise of on-stage magic, Logan impresario Michael Ballam tossed local audiences a curveball by presenting an operatic oddity. That throw was nevertheless right over the plate for a strike.
In its seldom-seen entirety, “Puccini’s Trilogy” of one-act operas explores that art form’s traditional three R’s: revenge, redemption and retribution. In “Il Tabarro,” a love triangle comes to a shocking conclusion alongside a Paris wharf. “Suor Angelica” is a heartbreaking Roman Catholic version of Madame Butterfly. “Gianni Schicchi” is an uproarious comedy of thwarted greed refreshingly sung in English.
Despite their disparate themes, these one-act operas are united by the legendary music of composer Giacomo Puccini, expertly performed by the UFOMT orchestra, brilliantly conducted by Karen Keltner.