Our 3-week rehearsal period for Madama Butterfly is fairly short, though by industry standards it's about normal. So what exactly is happening at this point, half-way through those precious 3 weeks? Well, in a nutshell, the singers, dancers, and chorus members are finishing up their staging rehearsals with director Leslie Swackhamer, and starting tomorrow they'll be running different sections. Tonight is also the first time the orchestra meets with Maestro Vordoni for a reading. This Saturday is the sitzprobe, which is a fancy German way of saying "let's all sit down and sing with the orchestra." It's the first rehearsal where the singers and orchestra get to work together, and it's a crucial period for pinpointing timing issues and making interpretive decisions.
That's the rehearsal report for now, but on another note, don't forget that this Sunday is OPERA UP CLOSE: The Madama Butterfly Preview, 4-6 p.m. in the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. Don't miss Allan Naplan's engaging, multimdeia presentation on the opera with special guests Leslie Swackhamer and Leonardo Vordoni. Tickets are $20; call the office at 238-8085 for reservations.