Inside the Kaleidoscope
Location + schedule
Ritz Theater Proscenium
345 13th Av NE
About the show
For ages 12+
Musical theater, Drama, Queer/GLBT, Political
Created by Carolyn Elerding
One-of-a-kind opera variety show spectacular! Arresting, experimental, and contemporary. A colorful blend of intense drama and engaging humor by Minnesota artists and talent from across the nation. In English.
At the 2010 Fringe, Opera Buffet presents INSIDE THE KALEIDOSCOPE, a smart, intriguing, colorful, and progressive opera variety show including electronic music and video projection. Each short segment tells a different story in a contrasting soundscape and visual style. Colorado poet Nicole Coonradt's "Bertram and Ferdinando" is a GLBT-friendly tale of love that will appeal to all. "Eugene Shoemaker's Thank You Note" is a unique science fiction confection by local playwright Marit Peterson."Living Stone" by Carolyn Elerding addresses an issue close to everyone's heart: the aging of loved ones and memory loss.
Also by Elerding, "Eponymous: Theremin Remembers" tells the amazing life story of Leon Theremin--one of the first inventors to create television, music synthesizers, and radio surveillance--in a few short minutes!
And finally, Elerding's "Frendz 4-Evah" is the story of an intermittent lifelong friendship that achieves a new level of stability. All music and video in the show is provided by Carolyn Elerding. House music is by Minneapolis composer Dixie Treichel
Highlights from a previous production: Medicine Show, The Opera!
Medicine Show, The Opera!
Great Singing - Performance Art
by Tim McClernon Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
The pieces to this kaleidoscope were mostly interesting, creative and, at times, moving. I'm not sure the pieces make up a whole, nor are intended to. Shahzore Shah sings beautifully for the beginning kaleidoscope and remains on stage for the whole show with his head on a desk until he wakes up at the end: maybe his dreams as he sleeps at his desk are meant to hold it together? Pretty bizarre dreams if that's the case!
The photography and videos shown on the screen at the back of the stage are artfully done: and the interaction of art, recorded music (which often worked well) with the singers makes for some excellent performance art.
The part with the Leon Tlieremin was very intriguing with it's mix of video, music and story line: perhaps my favorite.
Great Singing and Fascinating Subject
by Aaron Humble Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
It was good to see new and experimental music at the Fringe Festival. For the first show, the technical aspects of the show went as well as could be expected. Balance between singers and accompaniment was sometimes off, but that has probably been fixed by now. Although some of the reviewers did not enjoy the prerecorded material, I found it effective in distinguishing the difference between fantasy and reality, and demonstrating how disconnected relationships can become over time. The scene with the elderly woman and the phone (including a lot of prerecorded music) was very powerful and effective in showing the static that many elderly people have to sort through as they encounter dementia.
Is it rude to leave
by Diana Johnson Follow this reviewer
Rating 0 kitties
I couldn't believe how horrible this was. My group I was with, was just bored, and just found that the talent's voices were wasted on such CRAP! The best part of the whole show, was seeing the Friends 4 ever piece when they leave this one store, they were just shopping in, having a sign that said CLOSED!
Worth a shot!
by Tara Laberge Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
This operatic vareity show is an interesting and unique combination of visual arts and opera. Kudos goes to Carolyn Elerding for undertaking the daunting task of composing new opera. The singers are all excellent with an especially fine performance by Kristin Kenning as an aging woman coping with alzheimers. This show deosn't quite know what is wants to achieve yet, but I think the seeds of several fascinating projects are germinating here.
by Kelly Elliott Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
I thought the performers had beautiful voices and the acting was pretty good. I thought the scene about memory loss was beautiful. I was disappointed with all the recorded singing though and I wish there had been more staging and more of a story.
New music! At the Fringe!
by Florence Brammer Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
What a treat to hear brand-new music hot off the music stand at the Fringe, performed by a wonderful and fully prepared cast of singers. The visual elements -- including artwork and video that enhanced the on-stage narratives -- were beautiful and effectve. I especially enjoyed the gorgeous Hubble images of the universe. Eldering painstakingly researched and incorporated a wide variety of scientific, literary and historical resources for this work. One review commented on the piece's "disjointedness," but -- as reflected by the term "buffet" in the company title, it appears intended to be a sampling of several tastes. I love a show that dares to be different, especially when it succeeds as this one does.
A fragmented 'Kaleidoscope'
by Scott Jackson Follow this reviewer
Rating 2 kitties
This opera was fragmented, static to the point of lifelessness, and often difficult to comprehend. Much of the singing was pre-recorded, including a pre-recorded voice singing from a phone - three times! - as the phone's owner held it without responding. Talk about phoning it in! Stay outside.
This rating is for the singing only
by Scott Pakudaitis Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
At the end of this performance, I heard a nearby audience member say "What was that?!" That was my thought exactly. I wish that more of the singing was live instead of recorded. The duet with the two women would have been so much more interesting if they would have performed their flashbacks instead of watching them on video. Aesthetically I couldn't figure out why titles were displayed as if they were spray-painted onto a wall; they made no sense given the context of the entire show. The integration of video with live singing provided some lovely backgrounds for the soloists; the live pieces were delightful. Taken together, the show had no arc and felt disjointed.