An opera  “La Traviata” by Giuseppe Verdi.
Organizer: Estonian National Opera.
Conductors: Vello Pähn, Eri Klas, Arvo Volmer, Jüri Alperten, Risto Joost.
Director: Neeme Kuningas.Designer: Anna Kontek (Finland).
Lighting Designer: Esko Suhonen (Finland).

How to approach a piece composed in 1853 and played time and again? You can free your mind and absorb the piece as it comes. You might also acquaint yourself with the story beforehand and focus more on the details – production choices, interpretation, etc.
Let us place ourselves in the first balcony with a view of the orchestra pit. One can see and feel the heartbeats of the composition; fifty-some odd musicians fuss over the pace of emotions: first the violins, then the winds, all punctuated by percussive elements. Curtains open. Violetta, a popular courtesan in a beautiful white dress, floats through the party, managing the little society with a master’s hand.
Surely, Kristel Partna is a success as Violetta. This role requires a perfect mastery of voice and gesture to communicate the large palette of emotions. Partna puts forth an admirable effort in this vein and ultimately helps the music and content seamlessly achieve their goals. When Alfredo first reveals his love, violin bows get excited and the notes themselves seem to have fallen madly in love. Anyone who has never heard Verdi’s music has probably never been to the cinema either; his much-loved themes have permeated epic films as well: “The Godfather”, “La Luna”, “Pretty Woman”, “Match Point”, etc. The melding of music and stage performance here, the realism, is enough to transport you to the right place.
“Oh love, the divine essence of the universe.” Violetta discovers what loves means in the first act. She will have to choose between her glamorous life and her new born love for Alfredo. We swim in complete romanticism for our own pleasure. But happiness never comes alone. Feelings – excitement, passion, melancholia – are the great components of Verdi’s most famous opera. When Violetta arrives at Flora’s wearing a black dress, you understand that you are now in the dark side, the drama. One can see in the matador dance a surrealist picture: quasi-minotaurs dancing arm in arm with the rich women of the bourgeoisie in a very slow, hypnotic movement. Verdi’s range and that of this production are indeed wide.
I did my research, read about the author and the piece, informed myself about what the opera form is all about. I tried to get elements to compare. Still I had time to get chills during the play. I feel happy that I had the chance to dig into an unknown subject. The purpose of it all – visiting cultural events – is also to broaden your horizon and make your eyes look where they are not used to focus.