Los Angeles Film and Music Preview: LA BELLE ET LA BÊTE (LA Opera at Theatre at the Ace Hotel)

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by Tony Frankel on October 18, 2017

in Film,Music,Theater-Los Angeles


A familiar fairy tale takes on a broader and deeper subject—the transformative power of love and art. Jean Cocteau’s stunningly beautiful 1946 cinematic masterpiece is recast with an enchanting new soundtrack by Philip Glass. Not only is it one of Glass’s most accessible works, it may well be the composer’s career masterwork. The modern maestro works his own magic around the shimmering spectacle by replacing the film’s original music and dialogue with nothing less than a classical opera, performed by live singers synchronized with the actors in the film. Three special presentations, October 28, 29 and 31, will take place at the spectacularly restored Theatre at Ace Hotel. This unique experience features four vocalists (Gregory Purnhagen, Hai-Ting Chinn, Marie Mascari and Peter Stewart) performing along with the Philip Glass Ensemble, conducted by Michael Riesman.

Your ticket on Saturday October 28 includes admission to The Theatre at ACE Hotel’s Beastly Ball (21+). This popular party features special cocktails, dark arts provided by Super Deluxe, and DJ sets by special guests Thee Mike B, DJ Franc, and the Restless Nites DJs—dweller-of-the-night attire encouraged.

On Halloween night, LA Opera and The Theatre at ACE Hotel invite you to be their guest immediately following La Belle et la Bête for a Halloween party with costume contest, music and cash bar (included with ticket). Also on October 31, a drink token will be given to the first 40 people who register for the costume contest (special prize for best costume).

The motivation for this opera (according to the Philip Glass autobiography) was to complete a second trilogy to match his earlier works, the brilliant and innovative operas Einstein on the BeachSatyagraha, and Akhnaten (Einstein and Akhnaten are two of favorite operas of all time). He felt a great affinity in the 1990s for Cocteau, particularly his later work that reflected his own sense of passing fashion and mortality. The trilogy, which began with Orphée and Les Enfants Terribles, ends with this re-invigoration of the classic fantasy that tells of a beautiful young woman who takes her father’s place as the prisoner of a mysterious beast, one who wishes to marry her.

photos courtesy of LA Opera

La Belle et la Bête
presented by LA Opera Off Grand
(sung in French with English subtitles)
Theatre at the Ace Hotel, 933 S. Broadway in DTLA
Saturday October 28, 2017 at 8
(includes admission to The Theatre at ACE Hotel’s Beastly Ball)
Sunday October 29, 2017 at 2pm
Tuesday October 31, 2017 at 8pm

(includes admission to Halloween party with costume contest)
for tickets, call 213.972.8001 or visit LA Opera

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