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TWILITE ORCHESTRA: A Night at the Opera

I was having dinner with Isna before the performance of Twilite Orchestra commenced at 8pm. It was in some obscure new fast food in the basement of Plangi that offered some cheaper packages, New York something, the name of the joint. I ordered pizza and soft drink. It was a huge slice of pizza with nothing on top of it but four small thin slices of salami. Isna and I laughed at the ridicule portion of meat topping the pizza. Isna joked that it was good for my diet. Oh, please, can anybody stop telling me to diet and instead giving me the best-cheap doctor who can perform a miraculous liposuction?

Then, my cell vibrated. It was from Toto, a friend of Pram and Iwan whom I already met during the last Hajj Day.

I read the sms, “Roy, kamu jadi nonton? Udah ada di mana?”

Roy? Arundhati Roy? Sigmund Roy? Roy Marten? Who the hell was Roy? I forwarded the sms to the two people who know him, Pram and Iwan, and I sent my reply to the dyslexic guy.

“Kalo Roy nggak tahu deh, tapi Rio sih nontonJ,” my charming reply.

Isna laughed after I read the sms. I got a reply, quick, of apology. Ok, no problemo, what is in a name for a rose is still a rose, right Bill? (I refer to William ‘the Bart’ Shakespeare, ya).

So we met Toto at the front door and got inside. I was here a few days ago and, boy how different it was. No screaming little women and no lines to get in. Candles everywhere and they smelled like aromatherapy. Not so good an idea, I don’t like the smell, it smelled like a cemetery. Creepy, eh?!

Anyway, upon sitting in a rather empty hall, I found the first disappointment: there was no program book for virtuoso class—meaning the lowest-cheapest-pariah class in the show. But this pariah paid 100 thousand rups deh! So irritating! I took the 200 something program book laid on an empty chair. Ten minutes before eight and it was still rather empty, especially compared to Indonesian Idol I previously saw. So a missing program book wouldn’t be such a scandal, would it?

Second disappointment took place right after Addie MS began flaunting the baton. The photographers who were standing behind us felt like they needed to take part in the prelude of the showcase. They created another section to bring fresh nuance to the song. The camera section. It sounded “click, click, click,” without any sense of rhythm and ignoring the flaunting hand of the conductor.

The break after the first song was frantic as people scrambled to find their seat after being held back outside in the first song. We stole an opportunity during the hectic situation when people tried to find their seat in the free seating arrangement. The three of us seek comfort in the second best class of the show.

Now, the highlight of the show. Mbak Aning Katamsi was always sweet and melancholy and that night she was not at her best, nevertheless she could still soar. She still beat the higher notes in ‘Casta Diva’ smoothly although at times, she seemed a bit out of breath. Err… shall we jog together around Senayan, mbak? You, to improve your breathing, as for I, well, you know, to trim my tummy.

Christopher Abimanyu was my third disappointment. He was simply awful. Little power, uninspiring interpretation, unfit condition (he coughed several times), in short, he simply failed to entertain me. But boy, I love Rosario La Spina. His voice was powerful and impressive. And he was also a good actor, he didn’t just stand as most tenors would, but moved around with his huge body on the stage. A true entertainer. Anyway, what is all that about with tenors? Why are there so many of them fat? Luciano, Placido, and now, Rosario. (Yeah, I’m sure Mas Wisa would comment, they were also Javanese).

As for the orchestra and choir of Twilite, they were good but not so good lah. Not their best performance. I remembered once I was truly entertained when they performed in the concert called Musicademia. That night, playing mostly opera songs, TO was not in their peak performance, but I had a good time, though. I enjoyed the probably mediocre performance because perhaps, I haven’t seen a classical performance for quite some time, I long for any performance. All in all, it was good to go to an affordable classical concert once in a while.

Such a treat to the soul.

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