Bare Opera to Stream 3 Additional Performances of ‘Ever-Fascinating’ ‘The Presence of Odradek’

By David Salazar

Bare Opera is set to present three new performances of “Exercises on The Presence of Odradek” this Sunday, May 24.

The three showcases will kick off at 8 a.m., 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. EDT with a red carpet segment hosted by 360 of Opera’s Eugenia Forteza on the 360 of Opera Instagram account prior to the final performance.

The work, which had its world premiere on Sunday, May 10, 2020 features music by David Rosenmeyer with direction by Malena Dayen and choreography by Troy Ogilvie. There is also imagery by Guadalupe Marin and Donghwi Han with video and technical design by Sangmin Chae. Performers include Chanan Ben Simon, Malena Dayen, Ariadne Greif, and Georgia Usborne.

While this article is not intended as a formal review, it is worth bringing up a few unique aspects of the performance. The experience is designed with the intention of having viewers interact with their screens and shift them around to explore all the unique visual perspectives offered up throughout the performance. In one moment, you might see a singer performing with a second popping up just above him or her; to access that view, audience members can touch on their devices or remotes to shift the vantage point in either direction.

The work, which is based on Franz Kafka’s “The Cares of a Family Man,” is experimental in nature with the music shifting in styles and even musical effects throughout. At one point, one vocal line gets repeated over and over, the sound effect decaying and fading the initial recording more and more to express the passage of time and the loss of memory of that initial performance. It’s this kind of constant musical experimentation that keeps “The Presence of Odradek” ever-fascinating.

The performance lasts roughly 45-50 minutes, but the constant shift and momentum of the production makes them fly by, making you wish you could stay in that world a little longer.