Superb! Opera Orlando and Thompson Street Opera Company Present Death of Ivan Ilych at the Orlando Museum of Art (Through February 21, 2021)

Ivan Ilych is dead. His family is grieving at the funeral wondering what caused his death. Jump back in time and the family is eating dinner together. From there the relationships are explored and Ivan grapples with his impending end.

John Young composed the music as a response to his own near fatal battle with cancer. It’s a very timely piece now as we all are thinking about life and death during a pandemic.

Opera is a powerful medium, especially in the intimate setting of the Grand Gallery Hall at the Orlando Museum of Art. The forceful singing is much more emotional up close than from afar at the Lyric Opera.

The wearing of masks was varied in this production. The actors were allowed to remove their masks if they felt comfortable doing so. It definitely made it easier to hear them if they did so. Interestingly, the oboe player wore a face shield.

The cast is excellent. Sean Christopher Stork is moving as Ivan Ilych. Adriana V. Nieves is a powerful force as Praskovya, his wife. Jurrien Mejeur is very good as their child. Brent Doucette is solid as the friend and servant. Stephen Mumbert is an impressive presence as the doctor. Lastly, Jose-Manuel Lopez shines as the priest.

Catch Death of Ivan Ilych in Chicago, currently scheduled for September 2021.

Get tickets now for Opera Orlando’s Carmen on April 1st and 3rd.

Quinn Delaney

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