-Tan Dun Video Clips
-The Map Show Reel
The conceptual and multi-faceted composer-conductor Tan Dun, who is a winner of the Grammy and Academy Award, has made an indelible mark on the world´s music scene with a creative repertoire that spans over the boundaries of classical and multi-media, east and west.
The DVD video Tea is based on a production by Suntory Hall Tokyo, in co-production with the Netherlands Opera Het Muziektheatre Amsterdam and Shanghai Grand Theatre.
Tan Dun's newest opera connects the best of the composer's musical innovations (including his film scores and concert work) into a compact three-act, 100-minute work. The score is an amalgam of Chinese and Western music.
Tea is a fascinating masterpiece, performed by a strong cast (Nancy Allen Lundy, Hijing Fu, Stephen Richardson, Ning Liang) and premiered in the ideal space of Suntory Hall. With the composer conducting, the opera maintained rhythmic and dramatic momentum, constantly moving forward, yet allowing imaginative space and time on stage.
Partly inspired by Lu Yu´s eight-century Book of Tea, the opera is centred on the Chinese princess Lan and Japanese prince Seikyo, and the challenging of Seikyo by Lan´s jealous brother. The libretto, written by Tan Dun´s orchestration and Xu Ying (the resident Playwright of Beijing´s China National Opera and Dance Drama Theatre) was a minimalist canvas of mystic reference.
The vocal lines for the soloists and the chorus of nine bass-baritones are impressively simple and focused, and Tan Dun´s orchestration is a mastery of imagination with the 40-strong NHK Symphony Orchestra on stage and three percussionists creating sounds from water, paper and ceramic pots.
Angelo´s costumes were sculptural and colorful, and Pierre Audi´s clear direction accentuated the psychological and dramaric profiles of each character. It is splendid to see that Audi was able to give the different scenes emotional and dramatic weight with very little movement.