June 21, 2014

MICHAEL WALSH EMAILS:

Hi Glenn — the campaign against the “Klinghoffer” opera is disgraceful. I know all the principals involved and covered the world premiere in Brussels in 1991 for Time magazine. There is nothing anti-Semitic about it.

Here’s an excerpt from his review:

Klinghoffer is no docudrama but rather a stylized, subtle, Rashomon-like retelling of the tragedy. It takes no prisoners, and takes no sides either. On Sellars’ voyage, confusion is captain, and perspectives shift like ocean waves. Along with Leon Klinghoffer, truth becomes a casualty. The director has clad the entire cast in anonymous street clothes, and many roles are doubled — now friend, now foe — and who can tell the difference?

“On the ‘politically correct’ scale, we don’t even register,” comments Sellars gleefully. “People come expecting machine-gun fire and bodies being thrown overboard, and what they get is a bunch of art.” Complementing Sellars’ vision is Morris’ integrated choreography: a silent shadow subtext that swells emotionally as the opera progresses until it hijacks the action, transforming and finally transfiguring it.

That’s consistent with what a reader commented yesterday, and Walsh is a trustworthy source.