Spent 3 days wandering around Rome, looking at the three settings that take place in Tosca. It was profoundly useful to be able to see the settings are they are today, and while they surroundings are very different, the bricks and mortar of those places feel as they did in the time of Puccini.
I’ll be stage directing this for Pacific Opera Victoria next season, and so I’ve become curious about the differences between our ideas of what should be, and what actually is. For example, some of what happens in the opera is physically impossible in the real world of these places. So how to adapt and create what Puccini was after, when he himself was adapting and not paying much attention to the reality of what was.
We can get caught up in the idea that Shakespeare or any of the other writers from way back when need to be done in an appropriate period fashion, but it’s easy to forget that the original creators themselves were messing with all kinds of things, just as we do today.
On another note, Rome seems like the kind of place that it would nice to bring a group of friends and hang out for a month.