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A psychological melodrama by Gian Carlo Menotti.  In true Opera Factory style, and in keeping with the spirit of a winter presentation this fringe production is innovative, if not a little dark.  Directed by Raymond Hawthorne and starring Helen Medlyn.

From the Promo:

‘The Medium’ is a highly theatrical chamber opera guaranteed to excite with its dramatic sensibilities of a suburban gothic short story.   The melodramatic tale of Madame Flora (Helen Medlyn), a charlatan spiritualist who conducts phoney seances in her parlor, assisted by her daughter Monica (Emma Sloman) and a mute orphan boy Toby (Callum Blackmore).  She cons parents (Catherine Reaburn, Mark Covich, Helene Holman) into believing that they are communication with the spirits of their dead children.  Madame Flora’s game turns on her and becoming scared she descends into a world of paranoia and guilt. 

The music and libretto of this music theatre piece is by renowned theatrical American composer Gian Carlo Menotti. Opera Factory’s production team includes director Raymond Hawthorne, music director Rosie Barnes, lighting design by Andrew Potvin and pianist Grace Francis.

Menotti’s tuneful score abounds in influences from the American vernacular and jazz music, making for the kind of dramatic piece likely to be more at home in a Broadway theatre than an opera house.

Franciska's Review:

Never having been to an opera before, this gem served as a perfect introduction.  The music was haunting, the costumes and set exquisite, talented performers, great story, and being in English, we were able to understand it all!

Prior to this I didn't even know the Opera Factory existed ~ it was thanks to a facebook post from Helen Medlyn that I even discovered this opportunity to broaden my horizons.  The theatre itself, tucked away in a quiet street in Newmarket, is dated but delightfully intimate.  During interval we were served cheese and crackers by a lovely lady (theatre mum/nana perhaps?).  Got to love community theatre!

A thoroughly enjoyable evening and I can't wait to see my first full-scale professional opera.