Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Eine Kleine Afternoon Music

Mozart’s Magnificent Voyage by Classical Kids Live!, photo by Anne PrestamoClassical Kids Live! production of Mozart’s Magnificent Voyage
Actors Chris Petschler and Blane Hogan
Photo by Dr. Anne Prestamo
Copyright Classical Kids and Classical Kids Music Education
Eine Kleine Afternoon Music
Mozart’s Magnificent Voyage at Roy Thomson Hall, Toronto
By Will Dapple

On January 14, 2012, my wife and I took our niece to discover the Classical Kids Live! production of Mozart’s Magnificent Voyage, as the second instalment of the 2011-2012 Young People’s Concerts Series.

It was the only opportunity to attend a couple of CK performances (at 1:30 and 3:30 pm) in our city this season ($26.50 per the most expensive seat). CK is based in Chicago, Illinois. They are currently on tour showcasing other productions — Beethoven Lives Upstairs, Tchaikovsky Discovers America and Vivaldi’s Ring of Mystery — across North America. If you are not familiar with this company (as was the case with us until the concert), I would highly recommend you to visit their website for more information: Overview: The Classical Kids LIVE! Theatrical Symphony Concert Series.

Our audience of all ages was treated to a splendid two-actor performance (directed and produced by Paul Pement), accompanied by the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Joshua Weilerstein with Patricia Krueger soloing on the piano.

Chris Petschler (as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) and Natalie Berg (as maestro’s son Karl Thomas Mozart), dressed in the 18th century era costumes, told the father-and-son relationship story through dialogue, dance and song under the multicoloured stage light palette.

Karl “hates” his boarding school and longs to be living at home, pleading with his great father to agree to it, fantasizing about their exciting touring life together. Wolfgang shares a few childhood memories with his son. Karl begins to realize how uneasy his great father’s life really is, involving both the pleasures and pressures of fame. He relives young Wolfgang’s concert visits to London, Rome and Paris. Then, father and son unite in playing roles of The Magic Flute characters. Eventually, Mozart Sr. agrees to Mozart Jr.’s wish in exchange for Karl’s promise to be a hardworking student rather than a mischievous loafer.

Indeed, the story is a wonderful lesson of compromise and mutual understanding to all fathers, sons and everyone concerned. It was quite heart-warming to hear the thunderous applause as the final chords sounded. Bravo to all who attended for dedicating their precious Saturday afternoon off work to something that makes us all, children and adults alike, better people.

P.S. Most certainly, the highlight of the show was the choral performance of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star by both the actors and the audience.

2012 © Will Dapple
Please read other articles by Will Dapple:
Happy Old New Year!
Russian Rock — "Not in Vain"
+ The first-ever repoeting blog The Goal Frame

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