Y Tŵr – The Finishing Touches
We have now reached the last lap – taking the production to completion, on stage at the Sherman Theatre, with ensemble, lighting, full costume and make-up. As all these elements begin to come to life and combine I can finally see the piece as I had imagined it many months ago, but more importantly, I have the opportunity to take it further. This is such an exciting stage in the process, and though things don’t always go as one might have planned, in this case, the results are starting to go beyond my early aspirations.
The final week is also an amazing exercise in teamwork and collaboration, including all aspects of design and production, musical realization, direction of the singers, and intense conversations with the composer and writer. It is also wonderful to have the objective eye of Arwel Gruffydd the Artistic Director of Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru working with us, keeping a careful ear on the delivery of the text but also giving me valuable feedback. At Music Theatre Wales we are incredibly proud of the way our team works, and it is wonderful when I receive feedback from new members of the Creative Team commenting on how nice and how positive and effective it is to work with such a good team. All I can say is Thank You Team and lets keep the flag flying for MTW, for new opera and for contemporary performance in and from Wales – and this is what Y Tŵr truly represents:
This is a powerful and deeply moving new opera that is about life and living. It is utterly universal and has the capacity to touch audiences anywhere. The dramatic idea is completely suited to operatic treatment and I think Guto Puw and Gwyneth Glyn have managed to create a brand new work that functions in a completely different way to the original play but which honours and respects the original. The language is working incredibly well, and not only is this a significant cultural development within Wales, it is also a way of letting the world know that Welsh is a dynamic, living language and that Wales has a vibrant and important artistic life of its own that cries out to be seen far and wide.
My ambition was to commission a new opera in Welsh that would sit as a natural part of our international repertoire. I think we are about to see this aim fulfilled and I wish Y Tŵr a long international future. I also want to thank everyone who has participated in the creation of this new opera for their willingness to share this vision and help bring it about.
At the Final Dress Rehearsal tonight we will still make a few tweaks and try out a few new ideas, in the continual search for ways to improve the delivery and communication of this new opera for the benefit of audiences. The feedback from last night when we had a few observers in, seems to suggest that audiences brave enough to buy a ticket and give it a try are in for a treat. I really hope so! them later in the process to observe some stage and orchestra rehearsals at the Sherman Theatre and urge anyone and everyone interested to catch the production at some point during its tour!