Musical vs. Opera

I recently watched the musical We Will Rock You, and the opera Elektra. I know I won't be getting any Brownie points for excellent taste when I tell you I loved the first and didn't care much for the second. To be fair, I knew every song used in the Queen musical, right down to the little sample from the Flash Gordon soundtrack they used as a sound effect.

Richard Strauss' Elektra was first performed in Dresden in 1909. I am not a big fan of modern music. The music was aggressive and unpleasant to these unsophisticated ears. The heroine's hysteria was unpleasant too. I am so tired of women in art who go insane instead of doing something rational. The costumes were unpleasant. Of course, the original story from Sophocles is unpleasant. It's the kind of high drama and suffering that should be perfect material for opera.

That said, I wasn't engaged. When a show is good, the seats can be hard and too close together. You can have a sore back or sore feet or feel sad and it doesn't matter. Once the show starts, if it draws you in you don't notice the pain. You are there.

During Elektra, in the perfect acoustics of the new Opera House, I kept hearing the lady sitting next to me, chewing a candy. She must have been wearing dentures too because her mouth kept making a clicking sound, as if she were knitting. Click, click, chew, chew, knit one, purl two. I'm just glad she didn't ruin a great show for me...