Friday, 3 August 2018

#echochamber

Cast of Michael Betteridge & Ingunn Lára Kristjánsdóttir's #echochamber (Image courtesy of Gay Iceland)
Cast of Michael Betteridge & Ingunn Lára Kristjánsdóttir's #echochamber (Image courtesy of Gay Iceland)
During August 2018 there is the chance to hear a new Anglo-Icelandic opera in London, as part of the Tête à Tête: The Opera Festival, and in Hull and Manchester. With music by Michael Betteridge and lyrics by Ingunn Lára Kristjánsdóttir who is also the director, #echochamber was premiered in Iceland in May 2018 by Alþýðuóperan (Folk Opera Iceland), and is a collaboration between Icelandic and British artists, The Aequitas Collective. #echochamber will be performed at Middleton Hall, Hull University (10 August 2018), 53Two, 8 Albion Street, Manchester (14 & 15 August), and The Place, 17 Duke's Rd, Kings Cross (17 August).

It was in fact the first Icelandic opera to have queer protagonists, and it examines to tricky topic of public shaming on social media. To start, the team behind the opera looked at disgusting tweets and improvised around them. One of the performers Ísabella Leifsdóttir explains. “It’s a brand new opera and very contemporary as it deals with public shaming in social media, especially regarding women. Sexual orientation is not an issue, per se, and it is not a main theme in the piece, except for the fact that the woman who is bisexual has a hard time coming out with the fact that she is in a relationship with a woman.

Further information about the opera from the Gay Iceland website, and performance details from the Tête à Tête website, and from The Aequitas Collective Facebook page.

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