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By Citizen Reporter


Faust opens at The State Theatre

Opera lovers are in for a devil of a time.

The State Theatre, with the Pretoria Symphony Orchestra, is hosting grand opera Faust from Friday, September 28th.

Directed by Pierre du Toit and conducted by Gerben Grooten, the story gives audiences a unique opportunity to experience the opulence, elegance and refinement of French Grand Opera.

Faust tells the story of a man who sells his soul for earthly pleasures. The story has gripped composers and writers for centuries because of its rich thematic content.

The opera, in five acts, was composed by Charles Gounod in 1856 and features the aging and disillusioned scholar Faust, a tragic figure originally created by the famous German playwright Johann Wolfgang von Goethe.

The opera sees Faust, played by Canadian tenor Boris Derow for the South African production, call upon evil and dark forces to assist him in regaining his youth and finding love. Méphistophélès (Otto Maidi), an iniquitous villain dressed as a dashing nobleman, appears and presents Faust with a deal that he finds impossible to resist when Méphistophélès entices him with a vision of the beautiful Marguerite (Leah Gunter) at her spinning wheel.

Faust’s sinister pact with Méphistophélès sets a series of events in motion which sees good and evil manifesting in the dark desperation of Faust, the unblemished innocence of Marguerite, the youthful infatuation of Siebel (Linette van der Merwe) and Valentin’s (Aubrey Lodewyk) cruel condemnation of his sister, Marguerite.

“Faust has all the elements which epitomise opera as the finest art form through which real life drama in all its facets finds universal expression.

“The exquisite and delightful vocal writing includes many well-known arias such as Marguerite’s Jewelsong and Valentin’s famous aria, Avant de quitter ces lieux, which was immortalised by Russian baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky,” says Pretoria Symphony Orchestra manager Lizette Vosloo.

Audiences can brace themselves for an audio-visual spectacle – including a line-up of dazzling operatic soloists – directed by Samantha Seyffert and Rudolf Geldenhuis.

  • The show is at 8pm on weekdays, Fridays and Saturdays and 3pm on Sundays.
  • Tickets start from R100 to R300, obtainable at Computicket outlets nationwide. 

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