Ankara State Opera Ballet to stage COVID -19 process
The Ankara State Opera and Ballet (ADOB) will stage a ballet performance based on people’s experience depicting the moments of life, the sufferance endured, and the impact of the ongoing pandemic that has stricken us markedly restricting both art and life.
Some of the well-known and distinguished works that include opera and ballet performance will feature in the event by ADOB following the coronavirus measures.
Speaking to the state-run Anadolu Agency, the first female director of Turkey’s first opera, ADOB, soprano Feryal Türkoğlu, noted the season’s work and measures that they took while conducting the performances.
Stating that they opened the season with a concert series on Sept. 9, Türkoğlu said that they spent the first part of the process in minimizing the anxiety of the art lovers in Ankara and planning safety measures in order to protect the health of the audience and artists. For this, she said that they arranged seats to be “two empty, one full” for two months and that they have been selling tickets to the audience as “one empty, one full” as of November with the instruction of the Culture and Tourism Ministry.
Türkoğlu stated that in October, they performed the Mozart Requiem concert with two pianos, during which the choir wearing masks sat distant from each other, and that the soloists worked distantly on the stage and during the rehearsals as well.
She also noted that they gave the first orchestral concert of the season with the Oct. 29 Republic Day Concert.
“We will continue to organize our orchestral concerts, but we also made the orchestras smaller. There are plexiglasses among our wind instruments. “
Noting that they took the most intense COVID-19 measures possible, she said, “We do not increase the number of members in the orchestra to more than 25 in concerts.”
“It is our priority to protect the health of our artists and audiences without sacrificing art,” she said, adding that the institution is disinfected every other day, and the stage is disinfected after each rehearsal.
Türkoğlu informed that in November they will stage the first opera performance of the season, “Abduction from the Seraglio,” and added, “We do it with a shortened version of our work with the orchestra on and behind the stage and with the artists at the front. We cut some stages. We did not want to keep our audience in the hall for two hours. We are looking forward to see our audience with enthusiasm.”
Informing that in November they would be staging the first opera performance of the season named “Abduction from the Seraglio,” Türkoğlu said, “We do it with a shortened version of our work with the orchestra on and behind the stage and with the artists at the front.”
“We cut some stages as we do not want to keep our audience in the hall for two hours. We are looking forward to seeing our audience with great zeal,” she added.
Noting that they wanted to open the season with ballet performances, Türkoğlu said that they canceled the previously planned performances due to the increase of the spread of the COVID-19 and that the State Opera and Ballet (DOB) general manager, tenor Murat Karahan, helped them in overcoming the issue.
“During this period, there is nothing more than health. Disinfectants, foot mats, frequent cleaning of the institution, taking the temperature of employees and viewers, and not letting anyone without HES (life fits into home) code into the building are among the measures,” she said.
Pointing out that they are getting ready to stage a special ballet for the pandemic at the end of December, Türkoğlu said, “We will perform the ballet with the choreography of Uğur Seyrek. The name of the work ‘19!’ is inspired by COVID-19.
Stating that to hold such performances is an idea of Karahan and that he asked their other ballet directorates to hold such events, she said, “The pandemic has reminded us of many things. In Seyrek’s libretto, sensitive feelings such as people getting away from each other during the pandemic process, distancing themselves physically from their loved ones, and getting closer by heart would be reflected on the stage.
“Watching the pandemic in ballet will look different to the audience. The work is about to start,” she added.
Stating that they organized the programs weekly and daily due to the outbreak to protect the health of the employees, she said: “I know the administrative and artistic balances within the institution since I have been working in the same institution for 32 years. I am also the art director of the institution. This is how I combine administration and art. It’s hard to be a manager during the pandemic.”
In November, “Bir Tenor Aranıyor” (Tenor Wanted), which has been staged for 11 years, as well as “Tango Night,” which combines dance and music, will meet with the audience along with “Mozart Requiem.” For audiences over 65, at least two performances will be staged at 3 p.m. every month.