In a one-session presentation, artistic designers will share their behind-the-scenes preparation for the Cedar Rapids Opera Theatre production of Puccini's grand final opera "Turnandot."
In the story, the cold-hearted Princess Turandot has many suitors, but they must solve three riddles correctly to win her hand - and failure leads to death. Finally, a handsome prince solves the questions, but Turandot is still reluctant to marry him. The prince himself gives a challenge to Turandot - if she cannot learn his name by morning, they must be married, but if she discovers it, he will face his mortal end.
The making of this opera involves a myriad of elements that allow the singers and the conductor to tell this great love story. Director William Ferrara provides the artistic vision for the designers - a focus on the dark intensity of the Princess Turandot, and elements of fantasy as associated with Chinese imagery.
Several months in advance the designers, including those in charge of costumes, make-up, wigs, scenic design and creation, lighting, projections and properties, begin building set pieces, searching for props and furniture, planning and sewing costumes, sketching looks for make-up and hair, creating projections and choosing lighting equipment. All of this artistic work is done with the goal of giving the audience a complete and coherent experience while honoring the physical constraints of the theater.
Learn more at the Thursday Forum about the designers' artistic interpretations, the challenges of working with a large cast of approximately 100 people, the hard-to-research mythical setting, time and budget restraints, and performer needs.