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GoDirect AM - The shrewd squirrel

The shrewd squirrel

The shrewd squirrel

 

This staging is made to be appealing  to both children and adults. The space  has been designed and conceived as for a usual opera performance, full of attracting and stimulating elements for the young audiences. 
 
The action is developed in three different spaces: the Forest, the palace’s kitchen, and the palace’s living room. 
 
On the forest’s scene, the evocative element is a great tree built up with branches made out of hundreds of butterflies and a lighted cyclorama in the background. The king enters the scene on a kind of shell-shaped golden chariot, as if he were a huge and fat Venus. 
 
In contrast to the forest’s freedom, the kitchen gives an oppressive and dark feeling. To make this atmosphere, the cyclorama is closed with a black cap, and a small iron barred window comes down to the scene, showing as if the kitchen would be on the palace’s basement. In the middle of the stage there is a stove and an oven, while all the other elements, as cooking utensils and ingredients are hanging on them. 
 
 
The palace scenes are represented through two different halls, one where the new calendar is presented, and another one for the banquet, with a cake shaped table where the Glutton King sits down on the top, seeming a top cherry on a big cake. 
 
The cyclorama is used again on these scenes, as well as a number of vase shaped columns full of food, fruits and sweet that give opulence to the atmosphere. 
 
 
For the calendar’s presentation, the extras enter the scene in order dressing human sized cutouts that represent the days of the week. Each cutout has a hole where you can see the extra’s face. This is a scene full of movement and dynamism. 
 
All scene changes are in full view, scenic elements are moved by the six extras and the choir. At the end of the opera, the squirrell scapes from the palace by the stalls, hiding between the public. 
 
As for the clothing, has a colorful tale aesthetic. The squirrel does not dress like a wild animal, but rather as a review of the idea we have of squirrel. For example, the tail is bundled to a backpack, and she has the appearance of a modern young traveler. 
 
The King and all his guests wear inflatable costumes, giving them a comical look 
of huge but agile fat people. 

Artistic Team

Stage director: Alfonso Romero Mora

Set designer: Corina Krisztian

Costume designer: El Gran Turbinax

Lighting designers: Alfonso Romero Mora

 

 

Cast

  • Squirrel: soprano
  • King: bass
  • Chamberlain: baritone
  • Minister / Chauffeur: tenor 4
  • Extras: 2 women and 4 men

 

This musical fable in one act and four scenes, tells the story of a squirrel who  laments her lack of luck, not only because of her parent’s loss, but also for her  teeth loss. -Nothing more ridiculous than a toothless squirrel! 
 
When the Greedy King hears her, he proposes that he will give her some wonderful  golden teeth, but, not for free: the squirrel will have to give something in  exchange. After The King has rejected all her proposals, the shrewd squirrel  comes across the idea of the so called Glutton King. As she thinks that this has  to be because of some reason, she decides to propose him to make a delicious  feast for him and his guests! 
 
Later on, at the palace’s kitchen, the Squirrel realizes that even though she is  clever, she does not know how to cook, finally deciding to invent dishes which  become awesome! 
 
 
Tired of all these emotions, she decides to rest and leave the food for the  following day. In the meanwhile, the King’s guests arrive from all parts of the  world to celebrate a new calendar which means that nobody has to work, be- cause every day is a holiday to celebrate, or a resting day after a celebration  – at last, too many celebrations are exhausting for everyone! After waiting for thirty days, the King and his guests get really tired and desperate, 
deciding, even thought the banquet is not ready, to sit at the table. Enough  of waiting for the food, the King tries to threaten the Squirrel telling her that if  she does not finish preparing the dishes in one hour, she would die!  At last, the banquet is ready and the Squirrel is satisfied with the results, but  also very tired. Watching at her reflection on a pot, she suddenly notices that,  miraculously, her teeth have grown up again during her stay in the kingdom, so 
she does not need the golden teeth anymore! Happy and hungry, she starts to  eat all the dishes she has prepared, eating them all! When the butler arrives,  the Squirrel has already escaped through the woods, leaving the King and the  fat guests desperate around the table! 

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS

• Minimum stage dimensions: 8m width x 10 m depth

• The stage area must always be free of any element in fly space and on stage.

• The plan of the stage rigs must be available.

• The set design requires fastening and hanging.

 

TRANSPORT

• Set design and costumes are transported in a 13 metres trailer.

• Set design and costumes cover approximately 50 m3 Technical staff needed from the theater

 

. Staff to load and upload (5)

. Stagehands (5 for assembling and dismantling and 4 for rehearsals and performance)

. Props (1 for assembling and dismantling and for rehearsals and performance)

. Electrical staff (4 for assembling and dismantling and 2 for rehearsal and performance)

. 2 o 4Tailoring (2 to unpack and pack, 4 for the dress rehearsal, performance and costume arrangements)

. Hairdressing (2 for dress rehearsal and performance)

. Make-up (2 for dress rehearsal and performance)

Gara

(…) “Bravo Alfonso Romero, who was able to stage all this fable with a visual joy and impudence and a fantastic cheek. The singers embody their roles with grace, especially the King of César San Martín, who along with the fat choir staged a couple of hilarious scenes. The Gasteiz Chamber Orchestra managed fine with the succession of simple dances that used Rota, with Iker commanding the function
safely and effectively.
 

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