Dr. Atomic

I saw the Met Opera's HD broadcast of Dr. Atomic by composer John Adams and librettist Peter Sellars, and while I am already partial to modern opera, it was one of my favourite opera experiences to date. This is the story of JR Oppenheimer and his emotional response to his involvment with the Trinity test of the first atomic bomb in 1945. The music is out of this world and the libretto is so moving--from documentary sources as well as poetry, such as John Donne's. What might strike one as a potentially dry subject was incredibly poignant and hard-hitting simultaneously. Everything about the production was excellent, too: costumes, casting (esp Gerald Findley as the protagonist) and particularly the sets. The Met seems to do a lot of tiering in their opera sets, which I find appealing and flexible in interpretation. This was the encore presentation of the simulcast, but try and catch it in the future--exactly what modern opera should be!


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