Hot with Excess: A Season of Contemporary Artists’ Opera

Things to do, Performances
Hot with Excess: A Season of Contemporary Artists’ Opera
Photograph: Richard Kennedy

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Opera has a hard time shaking off its elitist image. It’s no longer the preserve of those with triple-barrelled surnames – you can get a ticket to a Royal Opera House performance for £11 – but it can often still feel formal.

Taking these conflicting feelings into account, London gallery Zabludowicz Collection is launching Hot with Excess, a new series hoping to challenge what it means to stage an opera. There’ll be no overtures and arias. Instead, you’ll see work by artists like Trulee Hall who’ll deliver a psychosexual opera that responds to the gallery’s building, a former Methodist chapel, and Benjamin Orlow, who has compressed his year in the Finnish army into a 24-hour film. Artist Marijke de Roover will mock the three-act structure of a romcom: ‘set-up, crisis, resolution’, in an opera that deals with her experience of unrequited crushes.

Going to an extreme, operatic performance-art piece that defies all easy definitions might, to some, feel even more intimidating than sitting in the Opera House stalls. But we’re keeping an open mind. From now on, a night at the opera could mean a bit of ‘La Traviata’, or a multisensory ‘orgy’ in a gallery that has a pop-up mezcal bar. The choice is yours.



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