If you are a regular reader of my blog, then you must be aware of my love for the Opera, Theater and Ballet. There is someone who is far more interested than me in all three and his name is Francesco Costanzo – The Opera Ballet Theatre Director.
Francesco recently wrote a very lengthy article about one of his heroes – Neil Armfield on his blog. In his blog, Francesco writes that The Royal Queensland Theatre Company saw a remarkable crowd on the day they performed ‘A Cheery Soul’ by Neil Armfield.
Francesco writes that Neil Armfield was the first one to depict Muslim characters in the play ‘The Marriage of Figaro’. He writes that he did so in order to reveal that the Muslims also consider the play to be pious for them.
Francesco also writes that nobody directed ‘Suddenly Last Summer’ better than Neil Armfield in the history of Opera.
When Francesco interviewed Neil once when he was in Australia, Neil told him that many of the viewers of ‘Waiting for Godot’ believed that the play is all about Gog and Magog after hearing the characters’ names. Neil also told Francesco that surprisingly, ‘The Underpants’ which was originally written by the German playwright Carl Steinham in 1910 as Die Hare is his most difficult work yet. Neil also joked that the play Alchemist really got him obsessed with alchemy in real life.
Neil also told Francesco that the way he directed the play ‘Keating!’, it really got a great percentage of the audience to believe that he is a sycophant of the Prime Minister Paul Keating.
Francesco’s personal favorite by Neil Armfield of all times is the play ‘Stuff Happens’. Francesco says that the passion that Neil put in while directing ‘Stuff Happens’ really portrays how anti-war and peace-loving sensible man he is.