Much like human history, opera is epic in scale, full of murders and romantic intrigue, and frequently interrupted by deformed men in half-masks and capes. Get in on the grandeur with today's Groupon: for $22, you get one ticket to a performance of Akhnaten (up to a $90 value), produced by the Long Beach Opera at the 3,051-seat Terrace Theater on East Ocean Boulevard. Seating, available in sections B or D, is done on a first-come, first-served basis. Choose between two performance dates:
- Saturday, March 19, at 7:30 p.m.
- Sunday, March 27, at 2 p.m.
Under the tutelage of melodious maestro Andreas Mitisek, the Long Beach Opera's toughened tunesmiths bang out praiseworthy performances of works by an international array of composers. The opera's stage-bound songbirds tackle questions of morality, power, and faith during their performance of Philip Glass's Akhnaten, the third in the composer's Portrait Trilogy. Making its West Coast debut, Akhnaten follows the rise and fall of the titular pharaoh, a leader known for bringing monotheism to Egypt and owning an expansive collection of ceramic kittens. True to Glass's reputation as an avant-garde artist, Akhnaten features vocal performances in historically accurate languages—including Egyptian, Akkadian, Hebrew, and Klingon—translated into eye-catching English supertitles projected for instant understanding. The cast is led by a covey of Long Beach Opera rookies, including international songsters such as Jochen Kowalski, Oxana Senina, and Ralph Cato.
Aria aficionados absorb three hours of sonic sustenance from the comfort of the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center's Terrace Theater. Intermission excursionists spy city sights out of the Terrace Lobby's expansive glass windows, catching glimpses of lost wishes in the terrace fountain or using opera glasses to spot incoming Viking marauders from the east side's ocean view.
- Philip Glass' "Akhnaten," which follows the rise and fall of the Egyptian pharaoh, will be performed March 19 and 27 at the Terrace Theatre in Long Beach in what the company says is the West Coast premiere of the 26-year-old opera in its original form. – Karen Wada, Los Angeles Times