Buwalsky, A Road Opera (NL)

Mel Marvin/Jonathan Levi (based on a screenplay by Irma Achten)

I'm Nobody! Who are you? Are you—Nobody—too?
Then there's a pair of us! Don't tell! they'd advertise—you know!

(Emily Dickinson)

If there's no love and you still get mauled, that's called abuse. Buwalsky, a Road Opera illustrates this in a derisive way. It is a morality tale, a soap opera about the body and its influence. The opera consists of two acts, each of which is subdivided into five scenes and five interludes, the transition from one to the next provided by the use of film techniques.

The opera is through-composed, but only the scenes are sung, accompanied by a small colorful ensemble. The interludes appear on film and are accompanied by an orchestra recorded on tape.

This production could also be seen in New York and New Haven (Yale University)



Buwalsky Peter Michailov
Lada Klara Uleman
Franco Charles Alves da Cruz
Inspector Wil van der Meer
Every Woman Jasmin Besig
musical director Jan van Maanen
director Corina van Eijk
art direction Jolanda Lanslots
costume design Pieter van Rooij
make-up artist Saskia Ellemeet
d.o.p. Tinus Holthuis
gaffer Henk Post, Nelleke Simons
assistant to the director Maaike Verdonk
editor Synco Scholvinck
sfx Dennis & Wouter
soundproducer Soundpalette
sound design and engineer Patricia Boogaard
business advisor Bert Schreurs
financial advisor Alieke Bonte
producer Saskia van Roekel
orchestra Spanga Festival Orkest and Aukso Stringorchestra (Poland)


´.. a truly Brechtian "soapera" for our time, in which there was not only good singing but also convincing acting by the five characters: besides Michailov especially Klara Uleman (Lada) and the Inspector (Wil van der Meer). (...) Van Eijk on collision course. I am returning to Spanga next year.´

Trouw, July 2004

´Perhaps Buwalsky is not the strongest van Eijk production in her 15 years at Spanga, but it is certainly one of the most original and ambitious.´

Algemeen Dagblad, July 2004

'Buwalsky, A Road Opera is an innovative, well-crafted and provocative work. Convincing performances carry the broad range of moods and characters, helping the opera achieve its deft balance of the humorous and the tragic in the opposing realities of the stage and the screen.'

New Haven Register, 26 september 2004

'The chamber work, Buwalsky, A Road Opera, a production of Netherland's OPERA SPANGA succeeds in mixing media and form seamlessly in a way that doesn't just smack of flavor of the month. Composer Mel Marvin, librettist Jonathan Levi and director Corina van Eijk of OPERA SPANGA, have collaborated closely to produce a clever, multimedia-laden work that while not overly busy is incredibly ambitious. They've created a narrative structure in which the dramatic interludes – consisting of well-produced films – intersect the opera, all in homage to Berg's Wozzeck.'

Opera News, September 2004

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