Fountain Extends Its Brilliant Opus

By: Aug. 10, 2010
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Opus by Michael Hollinger/ directed by Simon Levy/ Fountain Theatre/ extended through August 29

Michael Hollinger's brilliant work Opus has been critically and popularly acclaimed since it opened on June 19 @ the Fountain Theatre. What more can be said that has not already been extoled? The story about the fictional Lazara String Quartet could be about any group of artists, not necessarily musical, as its universal message of artistic beauty is in fact the song of life. With an astounding cast and direction, this production is one more classic for the class-A Fountain Theatre.

The vital, pulsating element of this production is the vibrant acting ensemble, composed of Christian Lebano, Cooper Thornton, Gregory G. Giles, Daniel Blinkoff and Jia Doughman. They make the performance as fresh and alive as it must have been two months ago. A special observation about Doughman as Grace and Blinkoff as Dorian. Doughman brings across the insecurity and vulnerability of the newest member of the quartet so well. Moment to moment she is riveting. Blinkoff as the genius violinist denied the chance to show his true potential bursts with emotional fireworks. Sensational work from all five actors!

Levy's direction is impeccable, Frederica Nascimento's set is modern and colorful as it applies to the stringed instruments, and A. Jeffrey Schoenberg's D. C. concert costumes, elegant.

Good performance is ephemeral like life, and the greatest, at best unpredictable. The ideal for a string quartet is that all play in harmony as if "with one bow". But... "you can never be perfect, just closer." Well, this production is about as close as you can get.


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