When we gather in the theater, we enact a ritual, we share stories, and we build community. The Glimmerglass production of The Magic Flute, which offers a Native perspective on a classic tale of enlightenment, offers a rich platform for us to consider our own journeys through life, as individuals and as members of a larger human community. The Cooperstown Ecumenical Council has put together a series of presentations on spiritual themes in the production. Plan now to attend one or more of these FREE EVENTS, which are open to all.
June 9: The Magic Flute Overview, Templeton Hall, 63 Pioneer Street
“When will the light find my eyes?” Just before the midpoint of The Magic Flute, Tamino is utterly confused. At the beginning of our story, he leaves an urban landscape to seek answers in the woods, but everyone he meets seems to have a different view of reality. How should he move forward in a world that seems to be constantly shifting? Director Madeline Sayet and dramaturg Kelley Rourke will discuss their new adaptation of The Magic Flute for The Glimmerglass Festival; conductor Carolyn Kuan will introduce key musical ideas in Mozart’s classic enlightenment tale.
June 18: Braiding Sweetgrass: Connecting Communities, First Presbyterian Church, 25 Church Street
Join us for a panel presentation and community discussion on the connection between human beings and the rest of the beings with whom we share the planet, and on the connections between Western conservation and ecology and indigenous ecological knowledge.
June 25: Journey into Light: Biblical Themes and The Magic Flute, Christ Episcopal Church (69 Fair Street)
Father Mark Michael will provide an overview and lead a discussion of some significant Biblical themes emphasized in this classic opera, which traces the journey into deeper knowledge and spiritual insight.
July 2: The Wisdom Tree: An Installation, The Glimmerglass Festival, 7300 State Highway 80
Troy Hourie, set designer for The Magic Flute, is creating a media-based landscape installation on the Glimmerglass campus designed to reflect on local Native American traditions of storytelling. Troy will meet with us around his installation, titled “The Wisdom Tree,” and describe the process of conceiving, designing, and building it. Participants will have time to experience the installation and the voices of four Native storytellers from multiple angles; those brave enough to crawl inside the trunk will have a special opportunity for reflection, removed from everyday life. Pastor Elsie Rhodes will moderate a discussion after everyone has had a chance to explore The Wisdom Tree.
July 9: Freemasonry, Christianity and The Magic Flute, location TBA
July 16: The Magic Flute and the Perspective of Native Peoples, First United Methodist Church, 66 Chestnut Street
Although The Magic Flute is an opera by a Western European composer, its central themes resonate in many ways with the perspective and worldview of Native peoples. This panel discussion, featuring director Madeline Sayet, Mohawk Storyteller Kay Olan, and SUNY Professor Jack Manno, will consider some of those themes as presented in the Glimmerglass Opera production of The Magic Flute.
Complete the journey by planning to attend the July 23 performance of The Magic Flute! Interested ticket-holders are invited to bring (or purchase) a picnic and join us at 5:30 p.m. for a shared meal, presentation, and facilitated discussion, before the 7:30 performance.