Vinsamlegast notið þetta auðkenni þegar þið vitnið til verksins eða tengið í það: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/36373
In this thesis I sought to identify the essence of Canadian opera and to explore how the opera Filumena exemplifies that essence. My goal was to first establish what is unique about Canadian opera. To do this, I started by looking into the history of opera composition and performance in Canada. By tracing these two interlocking histories, I was able to gather a sense of the major bodies of work within the Canadian opera repertoire. I was, as well, able to deeper understand the evolution, and at some points, stagnation of Canadian opera by examining major contributing factors within this history.
My next steps were to identify trends that arose within the history of opera composition in Canada. A closer look at many of the major works allowed me to see the similarities in terms of things such as subject matter. An important trend that I intend to explain further is the use of Canadian subject matter as the basis of the operas’ narratives. This telling of Canadian stories is one aspect unique to Canadian opera. It began even with the early operas of Canada, flourished with operas commissioned during the centennial celebrations of 1967, and has continued on to the present day, including the subject of this thesis, Filumena.
To discover if the opera Filumena represented what it means to be a Canadian opera, and more importantly, the Canadian identity, I had the amazing opportunity to interview the opera’s composer John Estacio. We spoke about many things, from the importance of telling Canadian stories on the opera stage, to the use of themes such as mixed heritage and the immigrant experience within the opera. In the pages below, through both mine and Mr. Estacio’s words, I intend to illustrate the importance and the difficulties of telling Canadian stories in the opera world. I will also explore the use of the above mentioned themes, mixed heritage and the immigrant experience, and the way in which they lend themselves to the opera’s Canadian identity.
With the research above, I discovered common elements, trends, and themes that led themselves to what can be called, the essence of Canadian opera. Through my interview with Mr. Estacio, I was able to understand important themes within and surrounding the opera. Together, these two streams of research have allowed me to better understand Canadian opera, and to examine Filumena’s place, as, what I will argue, the quintessential Canadian opera.
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