Review: The Magic Flute – Skilfully performed, clever and amusing

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Opera Soc’s contemporary adaptation of the 1791 Mozartian opera, The Magic Flute, which ran last week in Stage@Leeds, is at once skilfully performed, clever and amusing. Set in a post-apocalyptic future, The Magic Flute tells of the adventures of Prince Tamino and Papageno on their quest to rescue Princess Pamina. Along the way, the characters find love and alter the balance of power in the realm.

Traditionally known as a serious classical piece, Opera Soc has managed to transform The Magic Flute into a winning show suitable for students and young adults alike. Clever scriptwriting allowed for a variety of student humour – from cheeky jibes about student loans, to LUU’s rugby socials at Fruity – and even some puns relating to Lord of the Rings. Comic relief was also created by actors deliberately breaking character. Well-timed and well-distributed wit provided consistent entertainment without being overindulgent.

Most impressive were the superb performances; the entire cast displayed amazing vocal talent. A particular highlight was the Queen of the Night, who perfectly hit all the notes, and the unaffected performance of Papageno, who kept the audience drawn in from beginning to end. As an ensemble, the performers created beautiful harmonies and their highly stylised costumes and makeup formed an eye-catching aesthetic.

Opera Soc should be commended for their hard work which clearly paid off in The Magic Flute. It was a thoroughly engaging production, cementing Opera Soc as ones to watch on campus for future productions.

Mariana Avelino

Image courtesy of operasoc.co.uk

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