Mozart for all in New Richmond

(New Richmond) A hundred people have been mobilizing for 16 months in order to offer to the Gaspesian public and also six performances of a show paying tribute to the genius of Mozart, through the 15 pieces of the rock opera already mounted in Europe, and five original works by the famous Austrian composer.

Three of the short versions will be presented on Thursday and Friday to a school audience, while the general public will also benefit from three performances, Friday night and Saturday, a version comprising the 20 works rehearsed since January 2016.

This project was born of the will of the choir conductor Guylaine Fournier, which is not her first “folly” of the genre, a term she has adopted since the presentation of Les Misérables in 2012, also at the theater The Baie-des-Chaleurs in New Richmond. It was a project of equal size.

“It’s cyclical, and it’s very exciting for a group to be on an adventure of this magnitude. After five years, we were ripe. This is not something that can be repeated every year. It takes a community capacity to do it, and a full commitment. Both are needed, “explains me Fournier.

It ignites speaking of “school component, extraordinary, with a notebook built for that young people understand what happened on the planet at the time of Mozart, the XVIII th century.”

Considerable Challenge

The logistical and technical challenge is considerable. Of the 65 chorus singers, 55 come from Baie des Chaleurs, but five others live in Gaspé, 250 kilometers further east, while five French singers join the group for the last rehearsals.

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That’s not all. There are five dancers and seven soloists, all Gaspésiens, but the five musicians of the opera rock are French, under the direction of Florian Martinet, who realized the adaptation of the pieces during the European tour a few years ago .

“The musicians agreed to come, for a plane ticket, accommodation and food, including the maple taffy! It was simpler than taking musicians from here. And Florian Martinet is a friend, “says Guylaine Fournier, who visits France ten times a year to conduct choirs in Grenoble, Lyon and Cannes.

To this cocktail are added teams to the sets, advertising promotion and communications, production, technique, costumes and makeup.

“Putting it all together, it’s also that the challenge, as for Miserables in 2012. It must be able to rely on hyper talented colleagues and trained” says M me Fournier.

Versatility also helps quite a bit. Annie Arsenault, of New Richmond, assists Guylaine Fournier in her duties. She also handles communications, a bit of finance, a necessity for a $ 85,000 production, including $ 25,000 in sponsorship, and she sits on the board of the Tourelou Ensemble, the basic choir In this adventure. Ah yes, she also sings.

“Tourelou is a very tight chorus, even if we come from very different professional sectors. It’s a cliché, but it’s the passion of singing that unites us, “says Annie Arsenault.

Nervousness becomes a driver of performance when everyone has done their homework. “From January 2016 to January 2017, it was not yet effervescent. When the intensive weekends of rehearsals begin, one becomes febrile. Now it’s time to do it, “she said.