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Not until last Saturday, Classical Opera and Natasha don't mix. If not for Sabby's chorus role in Giacomo Puccini's, 'Turandot'; I wouldn't even had considered watching the performance. Not really my idea of a weekend night out, considering Baybeats was also jamming away with free gigs at the Esplanade. I had formerly watched another Puccini Opera movie, 'Tosca'; by Benoît Jacquot. It was totally intense, leaving you breathless on the plot and the poetry.

Largely in support of Sabby and a 50% discount I got from Keppel Nights, there were no reasons not to give live opera a try. And again, in my disbelief; I actually really enjoyed myself. I now have a new appreciation and respect for the music. I attribute old age and an increase in maturity for this new found taste.

Kim Young-Ae on the Turandot Programme
We raised our brows when the motherly looking lead actress walked on stage. Had to even peek through the 10x zoom of the Bushnell to be sure! I wasn't sure princes from around the world would sacrifice their heads for her kind of 'beauty'

Based on eighteenth century playwright Carlo Gozzi’s Turandotte, the fantastical tale blends elements from exotic fairy-tales, ancient fables and traditional mask comedies.

Accompanying the astounding music is an equally riveting plot. Set in China in legendary times, the story revolves around icy Princess Turandot who resists the advances of her many suitors by challenging them to answer three riddles, failing which they must be executed. Despite her seemingly cruel demeanour, the enigmatic Prince Calaf falls deeply and passionately in love with her and rises to her test regardless of the cries of those desperate to stop him.

What results is a battle of wits that climaxes in a powerful conflict of love and hate, ultimately resolved but not without sacrifice.

Us at the 1st intermission after Act One

Curtains close... take a bow...

The opera 'Turandot' was unfinished by the time of Puccini's death in 1924, and was later completed by Franco Alfano. It is regarded by many to be his best masterpiece with the well loved operatic piece 'Nessun Dorma'.

Directed by Lo King-Man
The Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Tsung Yeh
Chorus comprises Singapore Lyrical Opera’s own Children’s Choir, the Singapore Lyrical Opera’s Chorus and the Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts Choir.

The international cast and crew for our night includes Young-ae Kim (South Korea) in the role of Princess Turandot, Wei-Tao Long (China) in the role of Prince Calaf, and Rachelle Gerodias (Philippines) as the faithful girl-servant Liu.

More 'Turandot': Night At The Opera Pictures

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