The artists: Brash [the poet], Tyson Baker, Jon Larimore, Joe
Constantine, Aion Olson, Art and Ruppert and Claudia Olivos.
A performance by Guillermo Silveira and "The Skies of Washington"
Dupont Circle - Dupont Circle Fountain
Washington, D.C. North West
Friday September 7th, 2001 at 8PM
Celebrating the 25th Anniversary of D.C. Metro
The "bel canto" arrives to Dupont Circle like part of a
project to revaluate the beauty of the city through the art.
By Guido Bolanos
>Walkers are surprised when they find diverse personages
>singing opera arias at the one concurred circle of the
>District of Columbia. It is Friday September 7th, 2001, 8PM
>at night, and the magic of the unusual takes Dupont Circle.
>The actors - twelve beings of diverse origins: the Mexican,
>the Russian-Jew, the Lebanese-Armenian, the American, and the
>Argentine, among others - have taken the circle to perform
>MetrOpera, an initiative with which the art goes to the conquest
>of the public space.
>There, the opera tells people histories, common personages
>of daily life that they appear with a specific speech, to
>which they confront and they solve in their own way during
>the performance. With songs and theater, the opera leaves
>the Metro, more exactly from the metro exits that take them
>to the transport system, and that daily interlaces hundreds
>of thousands of lives with other hundreds of thousands of
>The metro of Washington DC turns 25 years old and its celebrated
>with MetrOpera, a piece that follows the current of labyrinths
>works written by its author, the Argentine composer Guillermo
>Silveira, in this city for 17 years.
>MetrOpera cannot be perceived in its totality because it is
>impossible. It is written, planned and thought in its totality,
>but it is done so that people perceive different parts of the
>work. "MetrOpera cannot be appreciated totally", explains
>Silveira in an interview.
>For example, the performers have their objective, their impulse,
>their Aria, their text, their libretto, their mission to fulfill
>dramatically and they change from the beginning until the end
>of the work, like in all dramatic pieces. But it is impossible
>to perceive what happens to to all the participants of MetrOpera,
>As an analogy lets imagine that somebody writes a work that
>happens in a building: one can see only what happens in that
>building through its own eyes and taking a walk by it.
>Obviously none can perceive everything that happens, Silveira
>"This work is written and conceived this way because for me
>MetrOpera is a reflection of reality. What I want is that
>people go to the Circle, take a walk around, goe to the Metro,
>ramble by the city, and begin to perceive that the art
>is in the source and they are part of the work, so people
>appreciate and incorporate them selves to the beauty of
>Dupont Circle", according to Silveira the last circle of
>Dante's Divina Comedia, the circle of hell.
>Dupont Circle, one of the most traditional circles of the
>city is being remodeled, although the project had to be
>done before the beginning of the summer.
>In order to also celebrate its opening Silveira thinks now
>on costums that will dress the actors of the opera, the dancers
>moving around, the sculptures that, through the performers, will
>emerge from the source, the fountain cup where they begin
>to walk between the people.
>I see it like a beautiful and awesome place in the city that
>we are all going to share that night to celebrate something
>that is important, that somehow it is communication, the
>quality of persona, the power to speak to each other, to
>understand each other, to know each other, to mix".
>To Silveira, author and director of the project, the handling
>of the space and time is very important.
>"Actors will have to come up and show and not only to solve
>the conflict of their personage, but since they will be mixed
>with people, they face the challenge of being seen by the
>public. That is to say, although nobody appreciates the work
>in its single totality but parts, the work in fact can be
>appreciated in its totality and that is part of the scenic
>task, so that the work does not get to happen unnoticed".
>Myths, muses that appear renewed, techno elements, new sounds,
>electronic instruments and sounds that were not heard
>before, meet thus in an atmosphere that is not the typical one
>where one is going to listen to an opera, but a public place.
>"At this time there is a revaluation of the art, because people
>do not hope to listen to a singer, people hope to listen to a
>musician of the street and when they listen to the texture of the
>music realizes that it is not a song one heres every day,
>is not a thing that can be improvised by themselves, what they're
>listening to is art. That is a human and beautiful product,
>as it happens in a place which people are not used to, causes
>the audience revalue the place. I believe that that is
>extremely important", Silveira says.
>MetrOpera will be sung in the four European languages of the
>Americas - Spanish, English, Portuguese and French, and the
>theme treats urban conflicts, following the line of the
>Urban Arias¨, another work by Silveira.
>It's also interesting that, suddenly one expects that in a
>public place they'll have a rock recital, or a political
>manifestation, or some typical folk event, but not an opera¨,
>"Washington is a very pretty city but there is not as much
>art as in other cities of the world. For that reason the
>"City Arts Program" of the D.C. Commission on the Arts and
>Humanities that supports art in public places proposes that:
>to embellish the city in a more humanist way, not only should
>it be commercially or comfortably and practical to ramble, but
>that at the same time people find time to think, time to ponder¨.
A Da Capo Aria that changes lyrics according to the time and
temperature and barometric pressure of the day. D.C. Aria is
perform at the time a train is about to arrive to the station.
"Invitation of Voyage"
Lyrics by Baudelaire, in Portuguese, French, English and Spanish.
"The Good News"
A Recitativo and Aria di bravura that includes the good news of the
A Blues Aria Duo with Lyrics by Tennessee Williams, from the book of
poems "Winter of Cities".
A quartet singing "O bay don'ya weep..." by poet Clyde A. Wray,
from his book Cause Everybody Ain't A Hero.
An Aria on Jorge Luis Borges "Refutation of Time". In English, French,
Portuguese and Spanish.
A nice historical aria representing D.C. residents clamming for their
own representatives at The House.
A song about celebration and vibration at the D.C. metro station,
optionally to be shared with children and audience.