Culture Magazine

@GOpera’s ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

By Galegirl

Operatoonity.com review: The Cunning Little Vixen presented by Glimmerglass Festival
Live performance: Saturday, July 21, 1:30 p.m.
The Alice Busch Opera Theater, Cooperstown, NY
Music: Leoš Janáček
Libretto: Kelly Rourke
4.0 out of 5.0 stars

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

photo from Glimmerglass Cunning Little Vixen

" data-orig-size="5290,3527" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?fit=5290%2C3527" class="size-large wp-image-9170" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-stageorch-9583/" alt="Vixen star Joanna Latini" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530558824","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"110","iso":"2000","shutter_speed":"0.002","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9583.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

Joanna Latini as the Vixen in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

What a season to be a Young Artist at Glimmerglass Festival! With three new productions and one new co-production, this summer’s shows abound with opportunities for junior performers to parlay their multiple talents into critical mentions and accolades.

In a new production of the seldom-seen The Cunning Little Vixen, 14 out of 19 roles were performed by young artists. Leos Janáček’s exploration of forest life at the intersection of human interaction provided all the artistic license young talent needs to become an array of creatures: a cricket, grasshopper, mosquito, screech owl, frog, dog, rooster, dragonflies, and a brood of show-stealing hens.

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

The hens from Cunning Little Vixen

" data-orig-size="5477,3651" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?fit=5477%2C3651" class="size-large wp-image-9173" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-stageorch-9738/" alt="A brood of hens" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530559508","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"150","iso":"2000","shutter_speed":"0.0015625","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9738.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

L to R: Michelle Arotsky, Anju Cloud, Alyssa Martin, Rachel Kay, Olivia Barbieri, Gretchen Krupp as Hens in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

While more than a sweet conceit about the inner life of animals, The Cunning Little Vixen seemed more of an artistic exploration than a definitive statement. For the composer, how to score the sounds a mosquito or a brood of chickens make. For choreographer Eric Sean Fogel, how to make humans move like insects and wild animals, and for all the artists, how to make those intricate movements and convey animal sensibilities.

On those levels, Vixen was an unbridled success. Fogel’s choreography was inspired and artful. The young cast’s animal impersonations made for the most entertaining and memorable parts of the show.

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

Forest scene from Cunning Little Vixen

" data-orig-size="5668,3779" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?fit=5668%2C3779" class="size-large wp-image-9175" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-gendress-1547/" alt="forest animals in @GOpera's Vixen" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530904732","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"88","iso":"3200","shutter_speed":"0.004","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-1547.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

L to R: Olivia Barbieri as a Dragonfly, Amber R. Monroe as the Jay, Michelle Arotsky as the Cricket, Kayla Siembieda as the Screech Owl, Gretchen Krupp as the Woodpeck and Rachel Kay as the Grasshopper in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

Few will remember the shards of melody Janáček infused with folk tunes. Or the storyline about a shrewd fox who evades the shotgun long enough to repopulate the forest with kits.

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

Photo of the title role in Cunning Little Vixen with her brood of kits.

" data-orig-size="5249,3499" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?fit=5249%2C3499" class="size-large wp-image-9177" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-stageorch-0168/" alt="The vixen and her kits" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530561797","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"105","iso":"1600","shutter_speed":"0.00125","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-0168.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

Clockwise from left: Lilly Grady and Catie LeCours as kits, Joanna Latini as the Vixen, Alyssa Martin as the Fox, and Maggie Stephens as a kit in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

But operagoers to this production will remember the facility and ingenuity displayed by the orchestra under the baton of Joseph Colaneri. Also, the sheet metal forest created by Ryan McGettigan, the dramatic lighting effects by Mark McCullough, and the clever costumes by Erik Teague. And numerous outstanding performances.

Young artist Joanna Latini delivers a star turn as the Vixen “Sharp-Ears.” She sang with strength and beauty. Her physical through-line of action as a forest creature was inspired.

Two stars of Cunning Little Vixen

Joanna Latini as the Vixen and Katherine Maysek as Lapak, the Dog, in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

Another talented young artist Alyssa Martin fully exploited a delightful trouser role as the Fox. She darted and swaggered and within minutes, the audience fully invested in the forestial family the Fox wants to make with Sharp-Ears.

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

The Fox character with his vixen

" data-orig-size="4615,3077" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?fit=4615%2C3077" class="size-large wp-image-9192" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-gendress-2149/" alt="The Fox" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530907253","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"140","iso":"3200","shutter_speed":"0.003125","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2149.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

Joanna Latini as the Vixen and Alyssa Martin as the Fox in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Connor Lange/The Glimmerglass Festival

From the synchronized flutterings of young artists Anju Cloud and Olivia Barbieri as dragonflies…

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

performers as dragonflies

" data-orig-size="4565,3043" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572" data-orig-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?fit=4565%2C3043" class="size-large wp-image-9187" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-stageorch-9572/" alt="dragonflies" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530558720","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"95","iso":"3200","shutter_speed":"0.002","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i1.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-StageOrch-9572.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

Anju Cloud and Olivia Barbieri as Dragonflies in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

To the menacings of Zachary Owens’ greedy badger…

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

Zachary Owens as the Badger in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

To the stellar cameo by Dylan Morrongiello as a determined mosquito…

comic mosquito

Dylan Morrongiello as the Mosquito in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival

…the Young Artist Program at Glimmerglass Festival made this show work.

Lastly, Artist-in-Residence Eric Owens turned in another solid performance @GOpera as the kind-hearted forester who captures the vixen to turn her into pet. Lest you are tempted to pigeonhole bass-baritones as operatic baddies (animal metaphor entirely intended), Owens range will defy those constraints as he did with this role sung with warmth and depth.

@GOpera’s  ‘Vixen’ a Menagerie of Movement, Sound & Talent

Eric Owens, 2018

" data-orig-size="4344,2896" sizes="(max-width: 500px) 100vw, 500px" data-image-title="KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691" data-orig-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?fit=4344%2C2896" class="size-large wp-image-9190" height="333" width="500" data-medium-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?fit=300%2C200" data-permalink="http://operatoonity.com/2018/07/22/goperas-vixen-a-menagerie-of-movement-sound-talent/karlicadel-ggf18-vixen-gendress-2691/" alt="Eric Owens as the Forester" data-recalc-dims="1" srcset="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?resize=1024%2C683 1024w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?resize=300%2C200 300w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?resize=768%2C512 768w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?resize=50%2C33 50w, https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?w=1500 1500w" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"2.8","credit":"Karli Cadel","camera":"Canon EOS 5D Mark III","caption":"","created_timestamp":"1530911537","copyright":"\u00a9 2018 Karli Cadel","focal_length":"95","iso":"3200","shutter_speed":"0.003125","title":"","orientation":"0"}" data-large-file="https://i2.wp.com/operatoonity.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/KarliCadel-GGF18-Vixen-GenDress-2691.jpg?fit=500%2C333" />

Emma Novak as the Frog and Eric Owens as the Forester in The Glimmerglass Festival’s 2018 production of Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen.” Photo: Karli Cadel/The Glimmerglass Festival


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