Jackson Gallery at Town Hall Theater Hosts Opera Company Photo Retrospective, Now thru 9/1
Taking photos of a stage performance is similar to taking photos of a sporting event. Everyone is motion, the lighting is never ideal, and it takes a real feel for the flow of the game to get the perfect shot.
Local photographers Ernie Longey and Max Kraus have taken masterful photographs of every one of the Opera Company of Middlebury's productions, going back ten years. These artful photos will be in display in Town Hall Theater's Jackson Gallery from August 15 through September 1.
"Ernie was everyone's favorite photographer," says THT executive director Douglas Anderson. Until his death in 2007, Longey photographed events for dozens of local non-profits, generally donating his services. "Ernie was technically flawless and he had a great eye for drama." His photo of OCM's first production, Carmen, made the cover of the Vermont Arts Council annual report - "and put our little opera company on the map," says Anderson
Max Kraus has been the staff photographer at Town Hall Theater for the past five years. A transplant from thePhiladelphia area, he makes a point of coming to rehearsals to get a feel for the staging of the show. He's known for taking hundreds of shots of a production, confident that in the mix will be thirty or so real gems. "His photos always tell the story of a show beautifully," says Anderson. "He always captures the key moments."
The work of both photographers has been whittled to 33 of their very best images, handsomely framed for this exhibit. "We're so lucky to have this record of our work," says Anderson. "The performing arts are ephemeral, and without witnesses like Max and Ernie it would be easy to forget the exceptional work that we've done here."
The Jackson Gallery at Town Hall Theater is open daily except Sunday from Noon to 5 pm.
PHOTO CAPTION: Ernie Longey's photo of the 2004 Opera Company of Middlebury production of Carmen, part of the exhibit OCM 10 at the Town Hall Theater Jackson Gallery, featuring the photographs of Longey and Max Kraus. From today, August 15.