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3/14/2024

Operas at the border

Opere na meji

The two opera events in Nova Gorica and Gorizia, scheduled for March, are organized by the Piccolo Opera Festival as part of the project GO! Borderless Opera Lab, which is a component of the official program of GO! 2025. Three chamber operas, two of which have been commissioned by the Festival, will premiere on the same evening at the end of the month.

On Sunday, March 24, 2024, the Slovene Chamber Music Theatre will present the opera "When I Was Still" on the small stage of the Slovene National Theatre Nova Gorica. The opera, written by Bojana Šaljić Podešva in collaboration with Ingrid Mačus, is based on a libretto by Saška Rakef. The production explores the theme of dementia and its impact on individuals and their loved ones, highlighting the role of music in coping with the disease.

On Wednesday, March 27, 2024, at the Lojze Bratuž Cultural Centre in Gorizia, two operas will be staged by composers who created original works during their residency at GO! Borderless Opera Lab last year. Sara Caneva will present "Origin, Position, Distance" (Radice Posizione Distanza), while Juraj Marko Žerovnik's part of the diptych is entitled "At the Gate of Law".

The goal of the residency programme is for young composers to visit our region and create an original opera inspired by their experiences. For instance, the three-part opera by Italian composer, conductor, and pianist Caneva explores themes of borders, liminality, the Soča River, and the former asylum of Franco Basaglia. On the other hand, the opera by Croatian-Slovenian composer Žerovnik draws inspiration from Franz Kafka's novel "The Trial" and also incorporates the metaphor of a border.

The operas will be accompanied by the GO! Borderless Orchestra, which brings together Italian and Slovenian instrumentalists through collaboration among the Piccolo Opera Festival, the Lojze Bratuž Cultural Centre, the Emil Komel Slovenian Centre for Music Education, the NOVA Music Society, and the Nova Gorica Music School.

Photo: Piccolo Opera Festival.

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