The Ministry of Operatic Affairs
BELGIUMS TRAVELING OPERA COMPANY
A small and passionate team of theatre-makers and musicians worked for a whole year on a new dramaturgy for Mozart's Don Giovanni. This opera has been staged thousands (!) of times. This could have forced the team into humility, but luckily it had no such effect... In spite of everything that is known about the main character, Don Giovanni (the macho, the rebel, the rapist, philosopher or glutton ...) and his seven opponents, director Korneel Hamers sculpted rich characters and outlined an intriguing journey for them. Fortunately, Mozart and his librettist Da Ponte left us with a heap of scintillating material...
The Ministry and Le Concert d'Anvers, with its conductor Bart Van Reyn, chose for opera in its purest form: with attention to musical quality, and with well-cast singers who could stay close to themselves, as the border between actor and character vanished. The wings of the theatre also disappeared: everything was visible to the public, owing to a transparent scenography that was both grand and intimate at the same time. A design serving as a projection screen for our imaginations, so to speak.
With this first production, The Minsitry of Operatic Affairs opened the door to a new and forward-looking way of producing opera. Don Giovanni was very well-received by the specialised press and a seasoned public.