Macaulay Seminar One at Brooklyn College
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The Tempest

Like many of my other classmates, it was my first experience at an Opera. And I have to say it was a really fun experience.

I read the Tempest a few years ago and remember hearing that it was Shakespeare’s last play. To be honest, it was the only Shakespeare play I enjoyed reading. And I enjoyed the opera version we watched a few days ago. I thought the way they reenacted the play was excellent and all the characters played their roles well. I also thought the characters had exceptional voices, especially Ariel – the coloratura soprano. I thought it was really incredible how she was signing with such a high pitch.

The one thing I didn’t like about the opera was the ending. While reading the play, I felt like there was a large focus on Prospero. Even though it seemed like it was the beginning of Miranda’s new life with Ferdinand and the end of Prospero’s story, Prospero was still left with a sense of authority. They way he addressed the audience in the reading was very powerful. In fact, I have heard that this represented Shakespeare saying goodbye to his readers. However, during the actual opera, Caliban was left as the main focus at the end. He was given the sense of power because he had his island returned to him. Prospero didn’t receive any importance and left with a feeling of weakness and despair, which I didn’t really like.

Aside from the ending, I found the opera very enjoyable.


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