THE BLOG

Stig Pettersson Takes on Strindberg in Hermosa Beach

06/23/2010 03:32 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Saturday, June 19, 8 pm
Live at the Lounge, Hermosa Beach

Saturday night was the West Coast premiere of Stig Pettersson's new chamber opera based on Strindberg's The Dream Play. It's about the daughter of a Vedic ruler, who comes to earth to see what humans are like, and finds herself intrigued with their options for procreation.

2010-06-23-SJPlarge2.jpg

The music that accompanies the daughter's journey is mostly ethereal, using the voices of young women, accordion, bells, xylophone, and even a little toy bugle. You can find the CD here.

Earlier in the evening, Yana Reznik on a Boston grand and Bolivian soprano Gian-Carla Tisera had charmed the audience with Cacinni and dazzled them with Rossini. First clarinetist of the Pacific Symphony Ben Lulich played a Mozart fantasy with lots of notes by Mozart's friend Franz Danzi.

Maxim Velitchkin took over for the rest of the first half, improvising in a larger-than-life Russian manner on themes from European operas and films that none of us could name. Supposedly there was a quote from Shostakovich. The experience was wild and untamed.

I was on the bill, too, impersonating a classical music critic with a late-night sense of humor.