The Young Vic in association with The Gallery at Sea Containers London hosted a Private Event on March 5 2020 to launch their new House Music Opera ORFEUS which is based on the legend of Orpheus and Eurydice.
The musical is set in two zones, the Underness and Overness. Pluto, the father of Orfeus, is the fascist ruler of Underness, a dystopian empire. Orfeus is lured into the Overness by Euridice and the attractions of the good life. Pluto devises a plan to lure Orfeus back to the Underness by kidnapping Euridice. Orfeus goes back to Underness to rescue Euridice but as we all either know, or suspect, things do not go to plan.
We were wined and dined before the presentation by members of the forthcoming Young Vic cast which will include Gianni Arancio, Bernadette Bangura, Franc D’Ambrosio, Grace Farrell, Fionabury, Nmon Ford, Nathan Kiley, Fabiane Leame and Shaq Taylor.
They sang five songs, including: OVERNESS (Mayor), I’VE ALWAYS BEEN ALONE (Orfeus and Euridice), COME TOGETHER (Pluto), SLOW BURN (Orfeus) and NO WAY (Orfeus and the Girls). The songs certainly entice one to learn more of the remaining score.
What is surprising is that from the five songs, it seems like this House Music Opera is really more Opera than anything else.
Nmon Ford has a very striking high Baritone voice, verging on the operatic and amongst the other artists who sang the songs is soprano Fiona Finsbury who is currently singing Tosca and Musetta at the Opera Undone production of Puccini’s double bill TOSCA/LA BOHEME at the Trafalgar Studios.
The Lyrics, Music and Libretto are written by Nmon Ford, who also plays Orfeus in the forthcoming production at The Young Vic.
It opens on April 14 2020 and will be directed by Charles Randolph-Wright, with Choreography by Shay Barclay, Costumes Designs by Ozwald Boateng, Set Designs by Leslie Travers and Musical Direction by Denjamin Kawsi.