Reviews: Bliss - Michigan Opera Theatre

Reviews: Bliss

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Rachel Hoh

This was my first time experiencing opera live and it was nothing short of life changing. When I first entered the performance space, I cried! The majesty of the Michigan Theater combined with the sheer willpower of the performers was unlike anything I've ever seen. To sit for hours and meditate on forgiveness was a gift.

Lynne

It's 9:42 pm on Tuesday, September 28, and I still am under the spell of Bliss. I am so grateful for the imagination, artistry, and dedication that combined to produce this haunting and uplifting experience. Thank you, MOT. Twilight, gods; Cavalleria Rusticana; Blue; and now this. This would be a stunning achievement under any circumstances, but to be able to do it in the midst of a world wide pandemic is even more amazing. Bravo!

Carole LaMantia

It was magnificent! The combination of that strange, awe-inspiring space and the beautiful opera performance was so moving and unforgettable. I was high for the rest of the day.
 
I hope there will be more like this. The acoustics were amazing and the setting is so perfect for an opera performance.

Prudence Cole

I am sorry for the people who did not know of the performance or make the effort to attend. It was magical.

Ann

One of the coolest events, EVER.

Mary Ann

By far one of the most special events I’ve experienced in Detroit. The former Michigan Theater is one of my favorite hidden gems and completely underutilized. The fact that it’s normally used as a parking garage and that BLISS was the first live performance for the public in the space in 50 years makes me feel even more grateful for having had the opportunity to experience it. I hope that this space is used as an event space for the public to enjoy regularly as it is a stunningly beautiful space. The entire event filled me with joy, front he loves opera, the lighting, the ambiance and the fact that it was donation based made it accessible to everyone (which should always be the case in the city). I hope the Michigan Opera, the DSO and other organizations will start to offer regular events at this space. Thank you for the memorable and truly breathtaking experience!

Robert DuBert

The other comments say it all--incandescent, ethereal, exciting, awe-inspiring, surreal. The lighting was superb and a key element of the production design. The acoustics of the garage are fabulous and gave the music a power and grandeur it might not otherwise have in a conventional venue. Better than Detroit Orchestra Hall or Hill Auditorium, in my opinion!

Mike

“Bliss” was absolutely fantastic! We lingered for about an hour, moving around the performance area from time to time. We heard approximately 20 segments of the piece, with no two being alike. The music and setting were breathtaking.

Richard

Beautiful music in an awe-inspiring setting. It was a very emotional experience for me as I contemplated the power of music. The melodies were running through my head for hours afterward.

Sandra

Could never have ever imagined it! A beautiful, surreal experience. So proud of the MOT!

Ian

I am so glad I was able to experience Bliss. It will stick with me for a long time to come.

Bill

Terrific. I loved the building where I spent many Saturdays in my youth. But the way the 3 and a half minutes was staged was wonderful, the many ways the count delivers his apology and the countess accepts it are how some of the possible moods invoked. And Mozart. Wow

Eileen

It was one of the most exciting experiences I had had in Detroit in a while, and we had seen Blue two weeks before! I loved how haunting the sound was as you entered the garage and when you arrived at the performance space the music and setting were magical. It was like listening to opera at the Baths of Caracalla!

Chris

Just an otherworldly experience. An immersive atmosphere highlighted by the beautiful music and elegant stage production. Perhaps the most unique and enjoyable live performance I’ve ever seen.

Rose

An incandescent evening and one that made me so very proud of Detroit and the Michigan Opera Theater. What a joy to see all kinds of people being exposed to art on so many levels. WOW. Thank you!!!! This third performance has to be THE BEST because of the incredible setting that was PERFECT. Beautiful in it's exotic decay. KUDOS to the musicians who stayed in that glorious moment for 12 hours. AMAZING. Stunning in all it's intimate moments and interactions. Thank you all!

Karen

If you like architecture, music and drama, there is no better place today than Detroit. The #DetroitBLISS performance inside the 1926 Michigan Theatre movie palace turned parking garage was beautiful, emotional and unforgettable.

Harrell Scarcello

The ethereal beauty of the final scene of the Marriage of Figaro. The otherworldly elegance of the Michigan Theatre ruins. Bliss by the Michigan Opera Theatre was awe inspiring.

Sara

A beautiful setting to listen to a bit of opera.

Christina

The most profound, dizzying arts experience I’ve had in years.

Seth

Wow! Detroiters: Drop what you’re doing and go see this before it closes at midnight. The best way to describe the incredibleness here is to say that the constantly repeating format lets you savor the music, the performances and the oddly repurposed architecture at your own speed as you walk around it all. To say that it’s immersive is an understatement. Do not pass this up!

Elena

Absolutely breathtaking.

Andy

Speaking as a religion major, Bliss is so aptly named. It was a kind of ecstatic experience, all-enveloping. First, the space was overwhelming. So Detroit and yet universal; cavernous, gorgeous-decayed, the remains of grand artistic visions of an earlier time. The lighting added to the feeling of spacious intimacy. The stage being in the middle with performers wandering to its edges, often within a few feet of audience members was crucial. As was the freedom of patrons to sit still, stand around, or even circumambulate the stage as with a Buddhist stupa. Then there was the hypnotic and ethereal music, which featured so few words sung over and over, each performance lasting 2:05 to 2:25 by my count. That’s actually a huge variation (fully 15%), and it speaks to how the singers, actors and orchestra changed it each time, sort of an operatic jazz improvisation of who was doing exactly what. And yet, it was the same thing over and over. The effect was so whole-body and mesmerizing that Mary and I lost all sense of time. At one point, we realized we had been there over an hour and had no desire to leave whatsoever. If we didn’t have a teen age daughter waiting on us at home, we would have stayed until the end. Someone, please let me know what that was like! The stamina showed by the performers made it feel dramatic and even suspenseful. Their free expressions of their exhaustion, such as lying about and singing prone, was a delicious part of the mix. So what did they do when they “made it” to twelve hours? All in all, this was an experience I will never forget and yet another indication of MOT’s arrival as a globally significant node of artistic life.

 

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