What do *you* wear to the opera?

The Dallas Opera did a free live simulcast of Mozart’s last opera, The Magic Flute, last Saturday at the Cowboys Stadium. This was a non-threatening way to introduce The P to opera.

The Magic Flute is sung in German. The P is reading a little now but not really on a “subtitle” level. So we spent part of Saturday at the library trying to find a children’s book adaptation…to no avail. There was only one, and it was already checked out. We got a Star Wars book instead.

Online, at home, we found an e-book that seemed to be what we were looking for. We read the story together and looked at some illustrations at another website that seemed to tell more of the story. We took The Princess to Mimi’s house, and then we were off to the opera.

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I didn’t notice the sock issue until seconds after I took this photo.

The P loved it!  Most of the subtitles stayed on the screen longer than movie subtitles would, so he was able to read most of the lines as long as they had small words.  And it certainly helped that we had read a couple of synopsis beforehand and were somewhat familiar with the plot.  This was especially helpful for the few times that the captions blinked out and we had no clue what the characters were saying.

As it turns out, there is a reason there are not many adaptations of The Magic Flute for children.  The first act is simple, but the second act is something like a commercial for Freemasonry.  Also, it seems that in Mozart’s last days, he was a little misogynistic, or at least he created characters that were and then made them the heroes of his opera.  Nonetheless, The Magic Flute works for children because the costumes are colorful, the music is pretty, the basic plot is very straightforward: boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl.

This is the view from our seats.  The picture looked a lot better in person.

The P wanted to stay until the end, but at 10:15 there was no end in sight and he was leaning into BabyDaddy and me pretty hard.  We went home.  But The P wants to go back.  I hope that the Dallas Opera holds another event like this.  It was so great.

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Bringing up a Diva

I do not remember the age that the P started to pickup on rhyming.

I do remember thinking that he was so into it that I should really encourage his inner poet, so I pulled out the best of the best modern poet, Bob Dylan.

I remember thinking that I had successfully passed on good music genes when the P asked, “Can we listen to that song about I’m sleepy and there is no place I’m going to?”

I almost cried. I’m serious.

I don’t know if Bob Dylan’s influence has made my son a better poet. I do know that it didn’t hurt, now we can both sing along to Tambourine Man, and it’s very special for both of us.

Now there is the subject of the Princess. This girl can’t rhyme yet, but she loves to sing- all the time. She’s always humming to herself and has already written a song.

It goes, “oh, dada.” But there are alternative versions out there on video. If she likes you well enough, she’ll sub your name for “dada,” too.

What’s the best thing to listen to when you are a budding soprano?

Opera, of course.

We’ve been listening to opera on Pandora. Opera is nap time magic.

On opera days, she is asleep in about 2 minutes, not to mention more cultured.

I love my little diva.

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Look at her. Doesn’t it look like she’s about to throw a plate of strawberries and cheese across the room?

Not to worry. Aretha, Carole King and Adele are on our top ten list, too. But they are more for dancing in the kitchen. Not so much for nap time.

And here is a little preview of the Princess’ birthday gift:

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More coming soon!