$10.00
A tribute to Opera!
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Recommend
70 
 Thumb up
3.06
 tip
 Hide
I can't say that I grew up with a musical background. I listened to pretty much whatever my friends did or what was on the radio, and my musical tastes were mostly formed through that.

Like many people, I didn't really know what opera was, and figured all the jokes about it were true. Then I took a graduate level course on opera in the fall of 2005 and I've been hooked ever since.

I find opera compelling because it combines many of the things I love - great music, great singing, the full splendour of a theatrical stage performance, and wonderful stories.

So in the spirit of sharing, here's a geeklist devoted to one of the coolest performing arts - opera!

According to Opera America, the operas listed below are the most performed operas in North America.

The descriptions of the operas are lifted from All About Opera.
Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: opera [+] [View All]
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2  Next »   | 
1. Board Game: Butterflies and Flowers [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Madama Butterfly by Giacomo Puccini

This is an opera I haven't seen yet, but it's part of the 2009/10 season at the Vancouver Opera.
THE action takes place in Nagasaki, Japan, during the present time.

In Act 1 Lieutenant B. F. Pinkerton, a young American naval officer, is being shown round a pretty Japanese house, which has just been secured for him by Goro, the marriage broker, who has also made the arrangements for his "Japanese" marriage with Cho Cho San, a pretty little geisha maiden, known by her friends as " Butterfly," which ceremony is about to take place in accordance with the easy Japanese law - the husbands absence for even so short a time as a month constituting divorce. When Goro has departed Sharpless, the American Consul, appears, who, having learnt of the real love which Butterfly has for her American sweetheart, begs Pinkerton to do nothing rashly, and, above all, not to hurt such a sensitive and loving nature. Pinkerton, however, only laughs at this serious talk, for he thinks only of the pleasure of the moment; and when Butterfly presently appears with her girl companions he welcomes her with all the ardour of a young mans first love. For a moment, when the generous-hearted Butterfly tells him that she has cut herself off entirely from her past life by giving up the gods of her people and accepting the religion of her lover, he has some slight qualms of conscience; but these soon disappear on the arrival of the brides relations and the officials, who unite the happy pair in Japanese style. After the ceremony the guests are enjoying the feast provided by the rich young American, when they are interrupted by the sudden entrance of a Bonze, or Japanese Priest, who is Butterflys uncle, and who now denounces her for having forsaken her religion. On hearing this the other relations also hurl forth curses upon the now weeping bride; but Pinkerton promptly turns them all out of the house, and soon succeeds in comforting his pretty little wife by making love to her in the moonlight.

In Act 2 three years have elapsed, and we find Butterfly alone with her maid, Suzuki, Pinkerton having returned to America long ago; but as he has promised her to come back "when the robins nest," she still hopes constantly for his return, and refuses to listen to a word against his fidelity. A rich young Japanese noble, Yamadori, who has long loved her, entreats her to marry him, announcing that Pinkertons desertion of her constitutes divorce according to Japanese law; but Butterfly firmly refuses, proudly declaring that she considers herself bound by the laws of America to her husband, whom she still loves passionately. Even when Sharpless enters and endeavours to induce her to accept Yamadoris offer, knowing only too well that Pinkertons desertion is intended, he makes no impression on her; and when she shows him her bonnie fair-haired boy (Pinkertons child), his pity for the poor little deserted wife is increased. He bears with him a letter from Pinkerton, whose ship is now due, announcing his lawful marriage to an American girl, and begging him to break the news to Butterfly; but he has not the heart for such a cruel task. Just then a cannon shot announces the arrival of the vessel; and as Sharpless hurries away to meet his friend, Butterfly, full of excitement and joy at the probable return of her beloved husband, and trustfully expecting his speedy entrance, at once bids her maid decorate the house with flowers from the garden. Then, having decked herself and the child in bravest array, she sits down with him to await Pinkertons entrance, watching for him through holes which she makes in the " shosi," or blinds.

In Act 3 Butterfly, Suzuki and the child are found still in the same position, having watched vainly throughout the evening and night; and now in the early morning Suzuki begs her drooping but still hopeful mistress to retire to her chamber and take a little rest, adding that her lord must not find her weary-looking on his return. These last words alone induce Butterfly to take her maids advice, and she retires upstairs, taking the sleeping child with her. Soon after, Pinkerton and Sharpless enter and eagerly greet Suzuki, whose fears for her mistresss happiness are confirmed by observing a lady outside, who Sharpless informs her is Kate Pinkerton, his friends lawful American wife. Pinkerton himself is so upset and conscience-stricken on beholding all the signs of his little Japanese sweethearts constancy and undying love that he rushes away, leaving Sharpless to settle matters. Kate Pinkerton now comes forward and says she wishes to adopt her husbands little son; and whilst she is speaking Butterfly herself comes down into the room. At a glance she at last understands all; and as the dreadful truth dawns upon her she bears the blow with wonderful calmness, and listens quietly to the gentle request of Kate to adopt the boy. She has no jealousy of her rival, but sweetly wishes her joy; and then she adds that Pinkerton shall have his child if he will himself return to fetch him in half-an-hour. Kate, overcome with pity at the sight of such resigned suffering, retires weeping, with Sharpless, who is also greatly affected; and when they have gone Butterfly sends her child out to play in the garden with Suzuki, whilst she herself takes down from the wall a Japanese sword with which her father had committed " Harikiri "(compelled suicide). She kisses the blade, welcoming it as a kindly friend; for now, deprived of husband and child, she has no further desire for life. When, therefore, Pinkerton at last enters and calls for his "little Butterfly," he finds that she has slain herself with the " sword of honour," and that her loving, faithful heart has ceased to beat.
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
2. Board Game: Paris Paris [Average Rating:6.21 Overall Rank:2031]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
La Bohème by Giacomo Puccini

THE subject-matter of this opera is more a series of character sketches, giving a vivid picture of Paris student Bohemian life than a story containing any very definite plot.

In Act 1 the happy-go-lucky, but desperately poor students, Rudolphe the Poet and Marcel The Artist, are shown at work in their garret, cold and hungry. Rudolphe sacrifices his MSS. to keep the fire alight; but presently their comrade, Schaunard the Musician, appears, having had an unexpected windfall, which he proceeds to share with his friends in true Bohemian fashion. He brings with him quite an extravagant feast which they at once proceed to enjoy, being joined by another friend, Colline the Philosopher. When the landlord comes angrily to demand his long-overdue rent, they merrily force him to join them at supper, and soon make him jolly and forgetful of his rent by copious draughts of good wine. After supper three of them go off to join in the fun of a fair being held in the streets opposite the celebrated Café Momus; but Rudolphe remains behind to finish a MS., promising to join them later. When the hilarious students have gone, Rudolphe is interrupted by the entrance of pretty little Mimi, an embroiderer, who has come for a light, and who half-faints on her entrance, being very frail, and, in fact, consumptive. Rudolphe has before been struck with the ethereal beauty of this girl; and he now contrives to extinguish the light, and as they both search for a key which Mimi has dropped, their hands meet in the dark, and, being thrilled by the touch, they confess their love for one another. Rudolphe now takes Mimi out to the fair with him.

Here we find all the merry friends taking refreshment outside the Café Momus; and here also Marcel meets his sweetheart, the coquettish Musette, who is at the moment accepting the attentions of a rich but foolish old banker. She soon manages to hoodwink her aged admirer, however, by despatching him to buy her a new pair of shoes; and then she quickly makes friends with her beloved Marcel once more, and departs with him.

In Act 3 we have many little quarrels and reconciliations between the two pairs of lovers; and in this act, also, we see that Mimi s malady is gaining a fatal hold upon her.

In Act 4 Rudolphe and Marcel are shown in their garret once more, very wretched because their sweethearts seem to have deserted them altogether; but their commise-rations with each other are presently interrupted by the hurried entrance of Musette, full of anxiety and excitement, who aunounces that she has brought Mimi to bid them farewell, as she is now in a dying state. Very tenderly the two students carry in the exhausted girl, and Rudolphe lays her upon his bed and folds her in his arms, weeping. The other students enter, and one by one they go out to pawn their coats in order to buy wine and restoratives for the dying girl. But Mimi is beyond all human help; and after uttering a tender farewell to her beloved Rudolphe she expires happily in his arms, and the curtain descends upon the despairing collapse of the bereaved lover and the sympathising sorrow of his faithful companions.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
3. Board Game: Conquest of the Fallen Lands [Average Rating:6.86 Overall Rank:1322]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
La Traviata by Giuseppe Verdi

The story:
Atto I. Paris, in mid-18th century. There is a great party in the house of Violetta Valéry, a well-known prostitute: this is how she stifles the anguish that torments her, since she knows that her health is gravely undermined. A nobleman, Gastone, introduces to her his friend Alfredo, who sincerely admires her. The interest Violetta shows for the new acquaintance does not escape the attention of Duphol, her current lover. While Violetta and Alfredo dance, he declares his love for her and Violetta gives him a flower, a camellia: she will see Alfredo again when the flower has withered. The festivities concluded, Violetta has to admit that for the first time, she has truly fallen in love.

Act II. Alfredo and Violetta have abandoned the city and are living happily together in a villa in the country. But when he learns from the servant-girl Annina that Violetta is selling her jewels because they have no more money, he rushes off to Paris to find some. Violetta's friend Flora invites her to a party, but she does not want to go and, staying at home, unexpectedly receives a visit from Alfredo's father Giorgio Germont. He accuses her of dragging his son into misery, but Violetta denies this, showing him that it is she who is selling her precious jewels and affirms that she has never asked Alfredo for anything. Giorgio seems convinced, but remains firm in his intent to separate Alfredo and Violetta. Their relationship is considered scandalous and as long as it continues, the other daughter cannot be married. Violetta must choose, and does what she believes to be the best for her beloved.

She abandons him, but he becomes blinded by jealousy. Violetta goes to a party once more accompanied by Duphol, who wants to challenge Alfredo to a duel. Violetta implores Alfredo to leave the house; he will go only if she goes with him.

She reveals to him that she has sworn not to see him and lets him think this oath was made to Duphol, in order not to have to tell him of the encounter with his father about Alfredo's sister. Alfredo is indignant and treats her like a prostitute. Giorgio arrives and rebukes him for his behaviour, but does not tell him the whole truth.
Act III. The illness undermining Violetta's health has worsened considerably. The woman is confined to her bed, too weak to rise. A letter from Germont arrives: finally, he has decided to explain everything to his son.

Alfredo is touched with pity and is on his way. Violetta is incredibly happy, but, for her, there is no more time; she fears she will not last until his arrival. But at last, there he is, at her side. His father has also come, profoundly regretting his conduct.

Tuberculosis kills Violetta before their eyes, in an atmosphere of extreme sorrow, softened only by the delicacy and purity of their emotions.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
4. Board Game: No Peace Without Spain! [Average Rating:7.73 Overall Rank:2305]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Carmen by Georges Bizet

This is one of my favorites...

The scene is laid in Seville, where a number of soldiers are lounging in the public square, being under the command of Don José, their lieutenant. Whilst they are laughing and joking, Micaela, a peasant girl, appears, asking for Don José, for whom she has brought a message from his mother; but though the village maiden was his sweetheart when at home he pays her no attention now, all his interest being for Carmen, a beautiful and wayward gipsy-girl, who has recently joined a cigarette factory close by. As he speaks with Micaela, the factory girls enter the square, Carmen being with them; and the lovely gipsy, singling out Don José as her new sweetheart, throws him the rose from her breast, filling the young man with delight. He falls desperately in love with her; and when the bold girl is presently arrested on a charge of wounding one of her companions he arranges her escape, and promises to meet her at a certain lonely country inn she names.

In Act 2 Don José arrives at the inn, where he finds Carmen with a number of her gipsy friends, who are in reality a band of desperate smugglers. Before the arrival of Don José, Carmen has been flirting with Escamillo, the most popular toreador in Spain, who is also one of her admirers; and he and her gipsy followers persuade her to tempt the amorous lieutenant to desert his regiment and join the smugglers. They then depart, and when Don José arrives Carmen uses all her fascinating arts to coerce him from the path of duty; and the young man is so enthralled by the wiles of the handsome coquette that when his superior officer presently appears and orders him to fall into rank he joins in the ensuing scrimmage arranged by the clever Carmen, and finally escapes with her to the mountains.

Here Act 3 finds him in the haunt of the smugglers, still desperately enamoured of the wayward beauty, whose love for him, however, is rapidly cooling, her roving fancy having by this time settled upon the handsome toreador, Escamillo, who pres-ently appears on the scene. Escamillo soon reveals himself as a rival to Don José, who, full of jealousy, challenges him to fight; but the pair are quickly separated by the smugglers, and Escamillo departs, inviting them all to attend the coming bull-fight in Seville, where he expects to gain further laurels. Micaela, who follows her faithless lover as a guardian angel, now appears, and endeavours to wean him away from the careless Carmen, whose love she knows to be but evanescent; and on learning from the gentle maiden that his mother is well-nigh dying, he is filled with remorse for his neglect of her, and returns to his home for a short time.

Act 4 opens upon the ante-chamber of the circus arena, where Escamillo is making love to the willing Carmen, who has already ceased to think about her last lover; but, as the toreador is called to the arena to join in the bull fight which is now beginning, the faithless gipsy is confronted by the angry and desperate Don José, who reproaches her for her desertion, and endeavours to revive her dead love for him. Carmen, however, scornfully repulses him; and then Don José, mad with jealousy, and enraged at her reckless taunts, seizes his dagger, and stabs her to the heart, just at the moment when the triumphant toreador issues forth from the arena. Escamillo hastens forward to greet his beautiful sweetheart; but his triumph is quickly changed to grief and despair as he beholds the proud gypsy dead at his feet.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
5. Board Game: Dawson City Barbers [Average Rating:6.67 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
The Barber of Seville by Gioacchino Rossini

ACT I. Count Almaviva comes in disguise to the house of Dr. Bartolo to serenade Rosina (“Ecco ridente in ciel”). Dr. Bartolo keeps Rosina confined to the house. Almaviva pays the musicians and decides to wait until daylight in the hope of seeing her. Figaro the barber, who has access to the houses in Seville and knows the town’s secrets and scandals, arrives and describes his busy life (“Largo al factotum”). The Count sings another serenade to Rosina, calling himself Lindoro, a poor student. Figaro devises a plan: the Count will disguise himself as a drunken soldier quartered at Dr. Bartolo’s house to gain access to Rosina, whom Dr. Bartolo intends to marry. The Count is excited about this plan while Figaro looks forward to a nice cash pay-off from the grateful Count (Duet: “All’idea di quel metallo”).

Rosina reflects on the voice that has enchanted her heart and resolves to use her considerable wiles to meet Lindoro (“Una voce poco fa”). Dr. Bartolo appears with Rosina’s music master, Don Basilio, who warns him that Count Almaviva, Rosina’s admirer, has been seen in Seville. Dr. Bartolo decides to marry Rosina immediately. Basilio praises slander as the most effective means of getting rid of Almaviva (“La calunnia”). Figaro overhears the plot, warns Rosina, and promises to deliver a letter from her to Lindoro (Duet: “Dunque io son”). Suspicious of Rosina, Dr. Bartolo tries to prove that she has written a letter, but she outwits him at every turn. Dr. Bartolo is angry at her defiance and warns her not to trifle with him (“A un dottor della mia sorte”).

Disguised as a drunken soldier, Almaviva arrives and passes Rosina a note, which she manages to hide from Dr. Bartolo. The old man argues that he has exemption from billeting soldiers. Figaro announces that a crowd has gathered in the street, curious about all the noise coming from inside the house. The civil guard burst in to arrest the drunken soldier. The Count reveals his true identity to the captain and is instantly released. Everyone except Figaro is amazed by this turn of events, and all comment on the crazy events of the morning.

ACT II. Dr. Bartolo suspects that the “drunken soldier” was a spy planted by Almaviva. The Count returns, this time disguised as Don Alonso, a music teacher and student of Don Basilio (Duet: “Pace e gioia sia con voi”). He has come to give Rosina her music lesson in place of Basilio, who, he says, is ill at home. “Don Alonso” also tells Dr. Bartolo that he is staying at the same inn as Almaviva and has found the letter from Rosina. He offers to tell Rosina that it was given to him by another woman, proving that Lindoro is toying with her on Almaviva’s behalf. This convinces Dr. Bartolo that “Don Alonso” is a true student of Don Basilio, and he allows him to give Rosina her music lesson (“Contro un cor”).

Figaro arrives to give Dr. Bartolo his shave and manages to snatch the key that opens the balcony shutters. The shaving is about to begin when Basilio shows up looking perfectly healthy. Everyone convinces Basilio, with repeated assurances and a quick bribe, that he is sick with scarlet fever (Quintet: “Buona sera, mio signore”). Basilio leaves for home, confused but richer. The shaving begins, sufficiently distracting Dr. Bartolo from hearing Almaviva plotting with Rosina to elope that night. But Dr. Bartolo hears the phrase “my disguise” and furiously realizes he has been tricked again. Everyone leaves.

The maid Berta comments on the crazy household (“Il vecchiotto cerca moglie”).

Basilio is summoned and told to bring a notary so Dr. Bartolo can marry Rosina that very evening. Dr. Bartolo then shows Rosina her letter to Lindoro. Heartbroken and convinced that she has been deceived, she agrees to marry Dr. Bartolo and tells him of the plan to elope with Lindoro. A storm passes. Figaro and the Count climb over the wall. Rosina is furious until Almaviva reveals his true identity. Basilio arrives with the notary. Bribed with a valuable ring and threatened with a couple of bullets in the head, Basilio agrees to be a witness to the marriage of Rosina and Almaviva. Dr. Bartolo arrives with soldiers, but it is too late. Count Almaviva explains to Dr. Bartolo that it is useless to protest (“Cessa di più resistere”), and Dr. Bartolo accepts that he has been beaten. Figaro, Rosina, and the Count celebrate their good fortune.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
6. Board Game: Figaro [Average Rating:5.31 Overall Rank:10308]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
The Marriage of Figaro by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

THE story of this opera forms a continuation of the plot of " The Barber of Seville," and the same characters are met with. The scene is laid in Spain, the action taking place in Count Almavivas château and grounds. The Count is now married to the fair Rosina, whose hand he secured through the help of the merry Figaro, the quick-witted Barber of Seville; but in spite of his real affection for his wife the amorous Count cannot yet refrain from flirting with every pretty woman he meets. He is here seen paying attentions to Susanna, the Countesss dainty, coquettish maid, who is betrothed to Figaro, who has now entered the Counts service. The happy pair are only awaiting the latters consent to their marriage, their household arrangements being already completed; but the Count keeps putting them off from day to day whilst he enjoys his little flirtation with the bride-elect. In order to punish him, Susanna and the Countess arrange a plot. The latter pretends to encourage the attentions of her page, Cherubino, who adores her, so that the Count becomes jealous of the youth. In order to get the page out of the way the Count gives him a commission and commands him to join the army at once; but the Countess and Susanna come to the aid of the crestfallen young man by dressing him up in female garments so that he shall escape the notice of his master. Whilst they are engaged in this masquerading the Count, whose jealousy has been aroused afresh by a note which has been handed to him as being a love-letter from Cherubino to the Countess, comes to the door of the latters room and, finding it locked, angrily demands entrance. As soon as Cherubino has managed to jump out of the window the Count is admitted and is nonpiussed at finding his wife in the company of Susanna only. His suspicions return, however, on the entrance of the old gardener, who is aggrieved at the damage done to his window-plants and flower-beds by some one choosing to make his exit through the window; but Figaro now appears and declares mendaciously that he did the damage himself. Complications quickly follow; for old Doctor Bartolo and his housekeeper, the elderly Marcellina, are also bent on flirtation, and the latter now appears with a written promise of marriage from the lively Figaro, on whom she dotes, and who has signed the paper for a joke. The merry Barber is relieved from his quandary, however, by the discovery that Marcellina is his mother whilst his father is none other than Dr Bartolo. More shocks are in store for him, however; for the Countess and Susanna determine to punish both him and the Count for their roving fancies for the opposite sex by means of another plot. Susanna invites the delighted. Count to meet her in the grounds after dark, and then she changes gowns with the Countess, and the two plotters repair to the rendezvous. The Count presently appears and begins to make love to the Countess, whom he mistakes for Susanna; and upon Figaro presently appearing on the scene he is rendered furious at beholding his betrothed accepting these attentions willingly. Young Cherubino also appears, and on making a declaration of love to the person he imagines to be his beloved mistress, he promptly receives a smart box of the ears from the merry Susanna. Having played out their little farce with much enjoyment the Countess and Susanna finally reveal themselves in their true characters as lights are brought on the scene; and the now repentant Count sues for the pardon of his fair wife, who very readily grants it. Figaro and Susanna also make up their little differences, and the opera ends with their union.
10 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
7. Board Game: The Castle of the Devil [Average Rating:6.54 Overall Rank:1142]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Don Giovanni by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

THE scene is laid in Spain, in the city of Seville. Don Giovanni, an unscrupulous, reckless and licentious young nobleman, with the aid of his servant, Leporello, enters the chamber of Donna Anna, the beautiful daughter of an old Spanish Grandee, the Governor of the City, and attempts to carry her off as he has already captured many other fair ladies of Seville. The ladys father, however, hearing his daughters cries, comes out to defend her, together with her betrothed, Don Ottavio; and in the struggle which ensues the Governor is slain by Don Giovanni, who makes his escape with his servant. Donna Anna makes a vow to bring her fathers murderer to death, and her lover agrees to assist her in her search for the libertine, his reward to be the hand of the lady he loves, and who now refuses to wed him until her vow is consummated. Don Giovanni, however, is not the least disturbed by the pursuit of the lady who seeks revenge on him; and, ignoring also the fact that he is pursued by another distressed maiden, the Donna Elvira, a former victim of his fleeting passion, he proceeds to continue to amuse himself with wild festivals and orgies, in all of which he is aided and abetted by his equally gay and rascally servant Leporello. He endeavours to steal the honour of a pretty peasant maiden, Zerlina, who is about to be wedded to her humble lover, Masetto; but this vile plan is thwarted by the timely appearance of Donna Elvira, Donna Anna and Don Ottavio, who have joined their forces against the libertine, who is compelled at last to make a hasty retreat from their presence. As he wends his way through the streets of Seville at midnight in company with the rogue Leporello he passes a statue which has been erected to the memory of the late governor, whom he slew; and as he proceeds to mock this representation of his dead victim, the statue replies to his words of scorn, warning him that he will die before the morrow. The cowardly Leporello is filled with terror, and beseeches his excited master to hasten from the spot; but Don Giovanni has no fear, and recklessly invites the statue to join him at supper that night, passing on his way with laughing indifference. Later on Don Giovanni is seated at supper with his wild companions; and in the midst of the revels Donna Elvira appears, having come to give her callous betrayer another chance of forgiveness if he will agree to repent of his excesses, for she fears that some terrible fate is in store for him if he continues in his wild and careless folly and wickedness. But all her loving entreaties are in vain, and Don Giovanni only laughs at her fears and repudiates her advances. At this moment, however, the sound of a heavy and unaccustomed tread is heard without; and, to the terror of all except the reckless libertine himself, the animated statue of the dead governor enters the banquet-hall, declaring that he has come in answer to the hosts invitation. The statue endeavours to turn the wild young man from his evil ways; but finding that all his warnings and threats are in vain he bids him prepare to meet his just doom. Even now Don Giovanni refuses to repent; and as a result the statue suddenly vanishes and the ground opens, from whence issue fierce flames and a horde of demons, who seize the libertine and drag him down to their own dreadful regions.
8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
8. Board Game: Toscana [Average Rating:5.66 Overall Rank:6660]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Tosca by Giacomo Puccini

THE scene is laid in Rome in 1800, at the time of the battle of Marengo. Cesar Angelotti, a politica prisoner, has escaped and takes refuge in the Church of Saint Andrea Alla Valle, where he surprises the painter, Cavaradossi, at work. Cavaradossi, recog nising in him the Consul of the late Roman Republic and an old friend of his, arranges to convey him through a secret passage in an adjoining chapel which leads out to his own villa garden, where he can hide in a dry well. Whilst making these arrangements he is interrupted by his sweetheart, Tosca, a singer, who demands admission; and thrusting Angelotti into the chapel, Cavaradossi admits the beautiful singer, who is of a jealous disposition, and whose suspicions have been aroused by the closed door. He soothes her ruffled feelings, however, and at length sends her away happy. Then, as he enters the chapel, a cannon shot announces that the prisoners escape has become known, and, knowing that every moments delay means danger, the painter decides to accompany the refugee himself. Angelotti by this time has arrayed himself in some feminine garments left in the chapel by his sister for his disguise, and the pair escape through the secret passage just as a crowd of citizens pour into the church, headed by the wicked Scarpia, Chief of Police, by whose malice Angelotti had been unjustly imprisoned, and who has now tracked him to this spot. The crowd are rejoicing in a rumour that Napoleon has been defeated at Marengo; and with them comes Tosca, whose jealous suspicions of her lover are stirred afresh by Scarpia showing her a ladys fan he has discovered in the chapel. Scarpia has conceived a violent passion for Tosca, and determines to make her his mistress; and as he suspects Cavaradossi of aiding the escaped Angelotti, he thinks to rid himself of his rival by bringing him to execution for his present shielding of a State prisoner. He therefore bids his chief spy and attendant, Spoletta, follow Tosca, believing that she will seek her lover. This ruse is successful, and Cavaradossi is found and brought to a chamber in the Palace Farnese, where Scarpia is expecting Tosca, who is to sing at the Queens festival that evening in honour of the supposed victory.

When Cavaradossi is brought in he refuses to reveal his friends hiding-place, and manages to whisper to Tosca to keep the secret also; but the cruel Scarpia orders him to be tortured in the chamber beyond, whilst he himself makes his infamous proposals to Tosca. The singer scornfully refuses to listen to his advances; but her anger is soon changed to grief and despair on hearing the groans of her tortured lover in the room beyond. The vile Scarpia now offers to release her lover from the torture if she will reveal the hiding-place of Angelotti, and at last Tosca, unable to bear more, gasps out that the refugee is in the well in Cavaradossis garden. The tortured man is then brought forth, but is full of grief on learning of Toscas forced betrayal of his friend; but the news is now brought that Angelotti had, before her confession, been taken, and has killed himself, and that the news of Napoleons defeat is false, and that he has gained a victory instead. The furious Scarpia therefore gives orders for Cavaradossi to be instantly shot, but as he is led away Tosca, on being left alone with the tyrant, passionately pleads for his life. Scarpia now offers to save her lover if she will grant his evil desires and become his; and at last the despairing Tosca consents. Scarpia declares that a mock execution will have to take place, but that blank cartridges shall be fired; and Tosca also persuades him to write a passport for herself and her lover to leave the city. Whilst Scarpia is writing this, Tosca snatches up a knife from the table, and when he flings down the pen and prepares to embrace her she plunges it into his heart.

In Act 3 Tosca appears at the place of execution and tells her lover of the mock death he is to feign; for Scarpia had pretended to give the promised instructions to his attendants before signing her passport, but-alas for poor Tosca ! - he has bidden them make the execution a real one after all. Cavaradossi therefore parts calmly from his sweetheart when the soldiers come to lead him forth, and Tosca remains to see him fall, as arranged, intending to escape with him afterwards when the soldiers have gone. Cavaradossi is put in place and, as the volley rings out, he falls to the ground and remains motionless, as though dead; and after awhile the soldiers cover him with a cloth and depart. Then Tosca hastens to her fallen lovers side and eagerly pulls aside the cloth, awaiting his expected caress; but to her horror she finds that real shot has been used and that he is dead. As she utters a cry of grief and despair, Spoletta and a crowd of officials enter the courtyard, full of excitement, having discovered that Scarpia has been killed, and suspecting the singer as his slayer; but before they can reach her Tosca rushes to the parapet of the tower, and casting herself over the battlements falls dead on the pavement below.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
9. Board Game: Verdict [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Rigoletto by Giuseppe Verdi

This was one of the best productions I've seen at the Vancouver Opera

The story:
The action takes place in the city of Mantua during the 16th century.
Act I. During a feast in the Ducal palace, the Duke of Mantua confides to the courtier Borsa his interest in a young girl met casually at the temple; in the meantime he is courting the countess of Ceprano and expresses his libertine morals singing a ballad, while the court buffoon Rigoletto mocks the count of Ceprano. At the end of the dances the cavalier Marullo reveals to the other courtiers that the buffoon Rigoletto goes each night to the house of a presumed lover. Immediately they all decide to play a trick on the perfidious Rigoletto by kidnapping the girl that very night. The count of Monterone arrives accusing the Duke of having offended the honour of his daughter. Rigoletto makes jest of him. While he is being taken away by the Duke's guards, Monterone hurls a terrible curse at the Duke and his buffoon. The scene shifts to a dark alley between Rigoletto's house and the Ceprano palace. It is night. On his way home, Rigoletto is joined by Sparafucile who presents himself as a cut-throat of honour. Rigoletto sends him away, but takes note of his name. Once home he embraces Gilda, his daughter, while Giovanna, the girl's governess, secretly lets in the Duke. After Rigoletto leaves, he presents himself as the poor student Gualtiero Maldé: he is the young man she met at the temple. Gilda is happy. The two exchange words of love, but the sound of footsteps makes the Duke leave: they are of the courtiers who quickly kidnap Rigoletto's "lover". Meeting the buffoon, they even ask him to join in their project, making him believe (after blindfolding him) that the person abducted is the countess of Ceprano. Only after Gilda has been taken away, Rigoletto removes the blindfold and discovers the deception: "Ah, the curse" he cries, dismayed.

Act II. In his palace the Duke laments the disappearance of the young girl. When the courtiers tell him about the abduction of Gilda to his apartments, he is happy and goes to see her. In the meantime Rigoletto arrives looking for his daughter and is mocked by the courtiers. When he learns that Gilda is alone with the Duke, he desperately pleads with the courtiers to give him back his daughter, but it is she herself who arrives, confessing her lost honour. Rigoletto swears revenge, while Monterone is conducted to the gallows.

Act III. On the banks of the Mincio river, Rigoletto takes Gilda in the vicinity of Sparafucile's tavern, where the Duke in a new disguise is planning on seducing Maddalena, the cut-throat's sister. The Duke's new song leaves no doubt about his low opinion of women. Even Gilda, following the scene through a chink in the wall, realises how dishonest the Duke is, but remains in love with him regardless. The Duke's effusions, Maddalena's superficial sentiments, Gilda's consternation and Rigoletto's anger unite in a quartet. Rigoletto hires Sparafucile to take out his revenge. This is his plan: after sending his daughter to Verona, he will come back at midnight and himself throw the sack into which Sparafucile will have put the body of the Duke into the river. However, as soon as her father leaves, Gilda goes back to her eavesdropping and hears Maddalena convince Sparafucile to kill the first person who comes into the tavern instead of the Duke. While outside the storm rages, Gilda offers herself to the sacrifice, and, unrecognised in the darkness, enters the tavern where she knows that Sparafucile's dagger awaits her. At midnight Rigoletto rejoices as he gathers up the sack and gets ready to throw it in the river, when in the distance he hears the song of the Duke. Incredulous, he opens the sack to discover his dying daughter. In the heartbreaking finale, Gilda reveals the reasons that made her substitute herself for the Duke in order to save him and expires asking her father's pardon. All that is left for Rigoletto is to cry: "Ah, the curse ".
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
10. Board Game: Magic Realm [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:639]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
The Magic Flute by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

This was probably one of the worst productions I've seen at the Vancouver Opera

THE scene is laid in ancient Egypt. The Queen of the Night is furious with the High Priest of Isis, Sarastro, because he has taken away her daughter, Pamina, in order to bring her up in the temple in the paths of purity and goodness, away from the evil influence of her mother. Tamino, a young Prince wandering forth in search of adventure, is saved from a monster by the attendants of the Queen of the Night who, in return for the service rendered him, sends him on the mission to rescue her daughter from the hands of the High Priest. Tamino eagerly undertakes the task; and he is joined by a merry bird-catcher, Papageno, who wears a feather dress as an aid to his profession. The Queen gives a magic golden flute to Tamino, which he is to play in times of danger, when the trouble will vanish; and to his companion she gives a peal of bells for the same purpose. As the pair approach the Temple of Isis they succeed in saving Pamina from the unwelcome attentions of a negro slave, who is terrified at the unusual appearance of the feather-garbed Papageno. The new-comers are brought before Sarastro, who proves to the young Prince that he is really doing right in detaining Pamina from her mother; and, seeing that the pair are already in love with one another, he promises them future happiness if they are only willing to go through many ordeals to purify their hearts and prove themselves worthy of the great gift of Love. The lovers agree to all the conditions, and they go bravely and without hesitation through the many ordeals placed in their way, finally even making their way through a fiery lake, which leads them to the altar. Even now, however, their trials are not over, for the Queen of the Night still determines upon revenging herself upon Sarastro; and she visits her daughter in a vision and commands her to slay the High Priest. This Pamina refuses to do, still calmly going forward with her sacred duties; but her courage is further tried by the absence of Tamino, who is taken from her side to be initiated into the mysteries of the rites of the goddess Isis. For a while Pamina is tempted to believe her absent lover false, since he fails to return to her; but once again she is reassured and permitted to join in the trials to which he is next exposed. Papageno accompanies Tamino in most of his adventures; and in all their times of difficulty, by the use of the magic flute and the peal of bells, they are able to conquer the dangers that beset them, since the music of the fairy instruments has the power to change anger into loving-kindness and storm into calm. Finally all the plots of the Queen of the Night are frustrated, and Pamina and Tamino come through all their trials and troubles cleansed and purified. Even the merry Papageno secures a reward by finding a helpmeet in a pretty little feather-clothed maiden, who appears at the sound of his magic bells. As soon as the evil of the Queen of the Night is finally conquered Sarastro appears, and, making a sign, the sunshine of goodness and joy drives away the former darkness; and as a reward of their true love and faithfulness throughout all their trials Pamina and Tamino are united. Thus love and integrity conquer all that is evil and dark.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
11. Board Game: Vino [Average Rating:6.51 Overall Rank:1881]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
La Cenerentola by Gioacchino Rossini

ACT I. Late eighteenth or early nineteenth century. In the run-down mansion of Don Magnifico, Baron of Montefiascone, his two daughters, Clorinda and Tisbe, try on finery while Cenerentola (Cinderella), his stepdaughter, whose given name is Angelina and who serves as the family maid, sings a forlorn ditty about a king who found a wife among the common folk. When a beggar appears, the stepsisters want to send him away, but Cenerentola offers him bread and coffee. While he stands by the door, several courtiers arrive to announce that Prince Ramiro will soon pay a visit: he is looking for the most beautiful girl in the land to be his bride. The sisters order Cenerentola to fetch them more jewels. Magnifico, awakened by the commotion, comes to investigate, scolding the girls for interrupting his dream of a donkey that sprouted wings. When he learns of the prince's visit, he exhorts the girls to save the family fortunes by capturing the young man's fancy. All retire to their rooms, and Prince Ramiro - disguised as his own valet - arrives alone, so as to see the women of the household without their knowing who he is. Cenerentola is startled by the handsome stranger, and each admires the other. Asked who she is, Cenerentola gives a flustered explanation about her mother's death and her own servile position, then excuses herself to respond to her stepsisters' call. When Magnifico enters, Ramiro says the prince will be along shortly. Magnifico fetches Clorinda and Tisbe, and they greet Dandini - the prince's valet, disguised as the prince himself - playing his role to the hilt as he searches for the fairest in the realm. The sisters fawn over Dandini, who invites them to a ball. Don Magnifico also prepares to leave, arguing with Cenerentola, who does not want to be left behind. Ramiro notes how badly Cenerentola is treated. His tutor, Alidoro, still dressed as the beggar who came earlier, reads from a census list and asks for the third daughter of the household. Magnifico denies she is still alive. Once Dandini has left with Magnifico, Alidoro tells Cenerentola she is to accompany him to the ball. Casting off his rags, he identifies himself as a member of the court and assures the girl that heaven will reward her purity of heart.

Dandini, still posing as the prince, escorts the two sisters into the royal country house and offers Magnifico a tour of the wine cellar, hoping to get him drunk. Dandini disentangles himself from the sisters and says he will see them later.

In a drawing room of the palace, Magnifico is hailed as the prince's new wine counselor. No one, he decrees, shall mix a drop of water with any wine for the next fifteen years. Looking forward to the feast, he and his attendants leave. Dandini reports to the prince with his negative opinion of the two sisters. This confuses Ramiro, who has heard Alidoro speak well of one of Magnifico's daughters. Clorinda and Tisbe rejoin Dandini; when he offers Ramiro as an escort for one of them, they turn their noses up at a mere groom. Alidoro announces the arrival of an unknown, veiled lady. Ramiro recognizes something in her voice. When she lifts her veil, he and Dandini, as well as the sisters, sense something familiar about her appearance. Their confusion is shared by Magnifico, who comes to announce supper and notices the newcomer's resemblance to Cenerentola. All feel they are in a dream but on the verge of being awakened by some rude shock.

ACT II. In a room of the palace, Magnifico stews over this new threat to his daughters' eligibility, telling them not to forget his importance when either of them ascends the throne. He leaves with the girls, whereupon Ramiro wanders in, smitten with the newly arrived guest because of her resemblance to the girl he met that morning. He conceals himself as Dandini arrives with the magnificently attired Cenerentola, courting her. She politely declines, saying she is in love with someone else - his groom. At this the delighted Ramiro steps forth. To test his sincerity, she gives him one of a pair of matching bracelets, saying that if he really cares for her, he will find her. After she leaves, Ramiro, with Alidoro's encouragement, calls his men together, so that the search can begin.

Once again the prince's valet, Dandini, faces Magnifico, who still believes he is the prince and insists he decide which daughter to marry. Dandini confesses he is a valet. When Magnifico turns indignant, Dandini orders him out of the palace.

At Magnifico's house, Cenerentola once more in rags, tends the fire and sings her ballad. Magnifico and the sisters return, all in a vile mood, and order Cenerentola to prepare supper. She obeys, as a thunderstorm rages. Dandini appears at the door, saying the prince's carriage has overturned outside. Cenerentola, bringing a chair for the prince, realizes he is Ramiro; he in turn recognizes her bracelet. Confusion reigns as Magnifico and his daughters smart from their defeat; angered by such meanness, Ramiro threatens them, but Cenerentola asks him to show mercy. Her family still against her, Cenerentola leaves with the prince, while Alidoro gives thanks to heaven for this happy outcome.

In the throne room of Ramiro's palace, Magnifico curries favor with the newly created princess, but she asks only to be acknowledged at last as his daughter. Secure in her happiness, she asks the prince to forgive Magnifico and the two stepsisters; born to misfortune, she has seen her fortunes change. Chastened, her father and stepsisters embrace her as she declares that her days of sitting by the fire are over.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
12. Board Game: The Mysteries of Peking [Average Rating:5.57 Overall Rank:7876]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Turandot by Giacomo Puccini

Act 1

In front of the imperial palace
The original 1926 scene design for Act I.

A Mandarin announces the law of the land ( Popolo di Pekino! - "Any man who desires to wed Turandot must first answer her three riddles. If he fails, he will be beheaded" ). The Prince of Persia has failed and is to be beheaded at moonrise. As the crowd surges towards the gates of the palace, the imperial guards brutally repulse them, a blind old man is pushed to the ground. His slave-girl, Liù, cries for help. A young man hears her cry and recognizes the old man as his long-lost father, Timur, the deposed king of Tartary. The young Prince of Tartary is overjoyed seeing his father alive but urges him not to speak his name because he fears the Chinese rulers who have conquered Tartary. Timur tells his son that of all his servants, only Liù has remained faithful to him. When the Prince asks her why, she tells him that once, long ago in the palace, he smiled upon her (The crowd, Liù, Prince of Tartary, Timur: Indietro, cani! ).

The moon rises, and the crowd's cries for blood turn into silence. The doomed Prince of Persia is led before the crowd on his way to execution. The young Prince is so handsome that the crowd and the Prince of Tartary are moved to compassion and call on Turandot to spare his life (The crowd, Prince of Tartary : O giovinetto! ). She appears, and with a single imperious gesture orders the execution to continue. The Prince of Tartary, who has never seen Turandot before, falls immediately in love. He cries out Turandot's name (three times) with joy, and the Prince of Persia echoes his final cry. The crowd screams in horror as the Prince of Persia is beheaded.

The Prince of Tartary is dazzled by Turandot's beauty. He is about to rush towards the gong and strike it three times— the symbolic gesture of whoever wishes to marry Turandot—when the ministers Ping, Pong, and Pang appear and urge him cynically ( Fermo, che fai? ) not to lose his head for Turandot but to go back to his own country. Timur urges his son to desist, and Liù, who is secretly in love with the Prince, pleads with him ( Signore, ascolta! - "My lord, listen!" ) not to attempt the riddles. Liù's words touch his heart. The Prince tells Liù to make exile more bearable and never to abandon his father if the Prince fails to answer the riddles ( Non piangere, Liù - "Don't cry, Liù" ) . The three ministers, Timur, and Liù try one last time to hold the Prince ( Ah! Per l'ultima volta! ) but he refuses to listen.

He calls Turandot's name three times, and each time Liù, Timur, and the ministers reply, "Death!", and the crowd gasp ("Ah!"). Rushing to the gong that hangs in front of the palace, he strikes it three times, declaring himself a suitor. From the palace balcony, Turandot accepts the challenge, as Ping, Pang, and Pong laugh at the prince's foolishness.

Act 2

Scene 1: A pavilion in the imperial palace. Before sunrise

Ping, Pang, and Pong lament their place as ministers, poring over palace documents and presiding over endless rituals. They prepare themselves for either a wedding or a funeral (Ping, Pang, Pong: Ola, Pang! ) . Ping suddenly longs for his country house in Honan, with its small lake surrounded by bamboo. Pong remembers his grove of forests near Tsiang, and Pang recalls his gardens near Kiu. The three share fond memories of life away from the palace (Ping, Pang, Pong: Ho una casa nell'Honan ) but are shaken back to the realities of Turandot's bloody reign. They continually accompany young men to death and recall their ghastly fate. As the palace trumpet sounds, the ministers ready themselves for another spectacle as they await the entrance of the Emperor.

Scene 2: The courtyard of the palace. Sunrise
The original 1926 scene design for Act II Scene II.

The Emperor Altoum, father of Turandot, sits on his grand throne in his palace. He urges the Prince to withdraw his challenge but the Prince refuses (Altoum, the Prince: Un giuramento atroce ). Turandot enters and explains ( In questa reggia ) that her ancestress of millennia past, Princess Lo-u-Ling, reigned over her kingdom "in silence and joy, resisting the harsh domination of men" until she was ravished and murdered by an invading foreign prince. Lo-u-Ling now lives again in Turandot and out of revenge she has sworn never to let any man possess her. She warns the Prince to withdraw, but again he refuses. The Princess presents her first riddle ( Straniero, ascolta! ) "What is born each night and dies each dawn?" The Prince correctly replies, "Hope."

The Princess, unnerved, presents her second riddle ( Guizza al pari di fiamma ) "What flickers red and warm like a flame, but is not fire?" The Prince thinks for a moment before replying, "Blood". Turandot is shaken. The crowd cheers the Prince, provoking Turandot's anger. She presents her third riddle ( Gelo che ti da foco ) "What is like ice, but burns like fire?" As the prince thinks, Turandot taunts him. Suddenly he cries out victory and announces, "Turandot!"

The crowd cheers for the triumphant Prince. Turandot throws herself at her father's feet and pleads with him not to leave her to the Prince's mercy. The Emperor insists that an oath is sacred, and it is Turandot's duty to wed the Prince (Turandot, Altoum, the Prince: Figlio del cielo ). As she cries out in anger, the Prince stops her, saying that he has a proposal for her. "You do not know my name. Bring me my name before sunrise, and at sunrise, I will die" ( Tre enigmi m'hai proposto ). Turandot accepts. The Emperor declares that he hopes to call the Prince his son come sunrise.

Act 3

Scene 1: The palace gardens. Night
The original 1926 scene design for Act III Scene I.

In the distance, heralds call out Turandot's command ( Cosi comanda Turandot—"This night, none shall sleep in Peking! The penalty for all will be death if the Prince's name is not discovered by morning" ). The Prince waits for dawn and anticipates his victory by singing "Nobody shall sleep!... Nobody shall sleep! Even you, O Princess" ( Nessun dorma ).

Ping, Pong, and Pang appear and offer the Prince women and riches if he will only give up Turandot ( Tu che guardi le stelle ), but he refuses. A group of soldiers then drag in Timur and Liù. They have been seen speaking to the Prince, so they must know his name. Turandot enters and orders Timur and Liù to speak. The Prince feigns ignorance, saying they know nothing. Liù declares that she alone knows the Prince's name, but she will not reveal it. Ping demands the Prince's name, and when she refuses, she is tortured. Turandot is clearly taken by Liù's resolve and asks her who put so much strength in her heart. Liù answers "Princess, Love!". Turandot demands that Ping tear the Prince's name from Liù, and he orders her to be tortured further. Liù counters Turandot ( Tu che di gel sei cinta - "You who are begirdled by ice" ), saying that she too shall learn love. Having spoken, Liù seizes a dagger from a soldier's belt and stabs herself. As she staggers towards the Prince and falls dead, the crowd screams for her to speak the Prince's name. Since Timur is blind, he must be told about Liù's death, and he cries out in anguish. Timur warns that the gods will be offended by this outrage, and the crowd is subdued with shame and fear. The grieving Timur and the crowd follow Liù's body as it is carried away. Everybody departs leaving the Prince and Turandot. He reproaches Turandot for her cruelty (The Prince, Turandot: Principessa di morte ) and then takes her in his arms and kisses her in spite of her resistance. Here Puccini's work ends. The remainder of the music was completed by Franco Alfano. [13]
The original 1926 scene design for Act III Scene II.

The Prince tries to convince Turandot to love him. At first she is disgusted, but after he kisses her, she feels herself turning towards passion. She asks him to ask for nothing more and to leave, taking his mystery with him. The Prince however, reveals his name, "Calàf, son of Timur" and places his life in Turandot's hands. She can now destroy him if she wants (Turandot, Calàf: Del primo pianto ).

Scene 2: The courtyard of the palace. Dawn

Turandot and Calàf approach the Emperor's throne. She declares that she knows the Prince's name: "It is ... love!" ( Diecimila anni al nostro Imperatore! ). The crowd cheers and acclaims the two lovers ( O sole! Vita! Eternita ).
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
13. Board Game: Age of Steam Expansion: Barbados / St. Lucia [Average Rating:7.34 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.34 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Lucia di Lammermoor by Gaetano Donizetti

The story follows on somewhat the same lines as Scott's romance, but the events are much condensed. The action is laid in Scotland, in the Lammermoor district, and in Act 1 Sir Henry Ashton and his followers are plotting to arrange a marriage between his sister Lucy and Sir Arthur Bucklaw, whose wealth and influence will assist the involved lord greatly, both financially and politically, he being concerned in a somewhat dangerous plot; but he is furious on learning from Lucy's tutor, Bide-the-Bent, that his young mistress has a secret lover, who has saved her recently from the attack of an infuriated bull, and whom he has discovered is none other than Edgar of Ravenswood, Henry Ashton's greatest enemy. Meanwhile, Lucy and her lover meet secretly in the park, and as Edgar is compelled to leave for France on State business, he desires to visit her brother and ask for her hand in marriage before leav-ing. This, however, Lucy begs him not to do, fearing her brother's anger; and finally the pair, having plighted their troth and exchanged rings, bid each other a tender farewell.

In Act 2 Henry Ashton is persecuting his sister, and endeavouring to force her to wed Sir Arthur Bucklaw, declaring that he himself is utterly lost unless she consents to do so; but Lucy declares that Edgar of Ravenswood is her only love, and vows to remain true to him. Finding her so steadfast, Henry makes use of deceit, and by showing his sister a forged letter, supposed to come from Edgar, and stating that he is false to her and has taken a new love, he gains his end. Lucy, believing that Edgar no longer loves her, and thus not caring what becomes of her, is now willing to sacrifice herself for her brother's good, and very reluctantly she consents to wed the wealthy Arthur. On the marriage night, however, just as the wretched Lucy has signed the marriage contract, and the ceremony is over, Edgar dashes into the midst of the guests to claim his betrothed, and, seeing that Lucy has actually signed the marriage contract, and believing she has played him false, he turns upon the poor girl and upbraids her passionately, finally departing, hurling curses upon the whole family. Henry Ashton follows, and after a heated quarrel, the enemies arrange to fight a duel at dawn next morning. The despairing bride is then led away, but shortly afterwards the guests are horrified by Bide-the-Bent bursting into their midst and announcing that the intensity of her grief has caused Lucy to become insane, and that she has murdered her newly-wedded husband.

The awful news is confirmed by the entrance of the distraught Lucy, who calls upon her beloved Edgar, and falls back dying. Meanwhile Edgar has been passing the night amongst the tombs of his ancestors, awaiting for the dawn to appear, that he may meet his enemy; but he is soon alarmed on hearing the funeral-bells tolling at the castle, and the followers of Henry Ashton presently enter to inform him that their young mistress is dead. Edgar is filled with despair and remorse on hearing that his beloved one is no more, and, seizing his dagger, he stabs himself, having no further desire to live.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
14. Board Game: 1849 [Average Rating:7.62 Overall Rank:2810]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
I Pagliacci by Ruggero Leoncavallo

A troupe of strolling players arrives in the Sicilian village of Calabria to perform a comic play. Having drummed up support for the production amongst the townsfolk, Canio retires to the tavern for a drink while Tonio takes advantage of Canio's absence to declare his love for Nedda. She firmly rejects his advances and is forced to defend herself with a whip when he tries to kiss her. Nedda is in love with Silvio who has persuaded her to elope with him after the play that night. However, Tonio overhears their declarations of love and, seeking revenge on Nedda, informs Canio of her betrayal. Canio returns too late to catch her lover but, threatening her with a knife, demands to know his name. She refuses and he is only prevented from carrying out his threats by Peppe who disarms him and persuades them all to get ready for the performance. At first the play exactly mirrors events to date - Taddeo's professions of love for Columbine are rejected in favour of Harlequin's and when Pagliaccio discovers she has a lover he demands that she confess his name. It soon becomes clear, however, that Canio is referring to Nedda's lover in reality and is no longer acting the part of Pagliaccio. When she declares that she will never divulge his name, Canio, in a jealous rage, lunges at her with a knife and strikes her down. As she collapses, she calls for Silvio thereby identifying her lover. As he rushes to her side, he too is fatally wounded by Canio, and the "comedy" comes abruptly to a close amid much confusion.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
15. Board Game: The Difference Between Women & Men [Average Rating:5.78 Overall Rank:6870]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Così Fan Tutte by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

THE story in its revised form is as follows :-Two cavaliers, Don Ferrando and Don Guglielmo, have great faith in the fidelity of their betrothed ladies, Fiordiligi and Dorabella; but being laughed at for their confidence by a cynical old bachelor, Don Alfonso, they allow him to persuade them to put the two ladies through a severe test. They consequently pretend to depart on a long journey with their regiment; but in a few days they return disguised as officers of another regiment, and, having altered their appearance entirely, they procure an introduction to the two ladies and proceed to pay them great attention, each making love to the betrothed of his friend. Fiordiligi and Dorabella are very indignant at the attentions paid to them by the new-comers, and their lovers are consequently delighted, and triumph over the unbelieving Don Alfonso; but the wily old bachelor arranges a deeper plot still. He persuades the two young men still to keep up their disguise but to feign such despair at the indifference of the ladies that they recklessly pretend to poison themselves in their presence.

Ferrando and Guglielmo agree to this also, and secure the aid of Despina, the attendant on the two ladies, to assist them. In this plot Don Alfonso very nearly succeeds; for when the strange officers feign to poison themselves in their presence Fiordiligi and Dorabella are terribly concerned, and show great pity for the love-sick swains. Despina, however, at last considers it unfair that her young mistresses should be thus deceived further, and she finds means to reveal the secret of the plot to them. The two girls now carry the war into the enemys camp, and play a fine trick upon their lovers. They boldly accept the new suitors, and even go so far as to sign the marriage contracts, taking care, however, that these shall be false documents, the notary being Despina in borrowed garments; and then when Ferrando and Guglielmo appear in their own form once more, furious at their supposed fickleness, they tease them still further, keeping up the deception a little longer, and then at last laughingly reveal the fact that they have cleverly turned the tables on them. The young men are now ashamed that they should have even pretended to doubt the fidelity of their chosen ladies, and very contritely sue for pardon; and this being readily granted the happy couples are reunited, and the old bachelor is compelled to retire crestfallen.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
16. Board Game: Cleopatra and the Society of Architects [Average Rating:6.82 Overall Rank:558]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Aida by Giuseppe Verdi

The story:
The action takes place in ancient Egypt

Act I. Scene I. The Ethiopians are ready to attack the Nile Valley and Thebes; Ramfis, the high priest, tells young Radames that the gods have already indicated the warrior who will command the Egyptian army against the invaders. Radames hopes to be chosen in order to cover himself in glory for the love of Aida, and Ethiopian slave. The pharaoh's daughter, Amneris arrives, attended by the girl, whom Amneris, in love with Radames, suspects to be the one Radames loves. She manages to hide her jealousy, however, pretending good feelings toward her slave. The king, attended by his court, arrives and announces that Radames has indeed been chosen to lead the troops. Aida is torn between her love for Radames and her loyalty to her father and her people.

Act I. Scene II. In the temple of Vulcan the propitiatory ceremonies and prayers are held, and Radames receives from Ramfis the sacred sword.

Act II. Scene I. To find out Aida's true sentiments, Amneris falsely announces Radames' death to her. The slave girl cannot keep back a cry of despair and Amneris, certain by now to have her as a rival, unveils the deception and vows her revenge.

Act II. Scene II. Radames has defeated the Ethiopians and the Egyptian army parades triumphantly before the king. Radames, crowned by Amneris, intercedes in favour of the prisoners, among whom is Amonasro, Aida's father. The king accepts, but then, at the protests of the priests, decides that Aida and her father will be kept hostage.

Act III. Radames cannot refuse marriage with the pharaoh's daughter, and Amneris, on the eve of the wedding, goes to the Temple of Iris to pray. In the meantime, Amonasro, having discovered the love between his daughter and Radames, orders her to ask Radames which route the Egyptians will take in order to allow the revolting Ethiopians to ambush them. Then he overhears, hidden, the conversation between the two lovers in which Radames reveals to Aida that the Egyptian army will attack the Ethiopians at the Napata Pass, as yet unguarded.. Amonasro, exulting, comes out of his hiding place. Radames is aghast, realising he has betrayed his own country without meaning to. Amneris with Ramfis arrives; Amonasro lunges to strike her, but Radames protects her and gives himself up to the high priest to expiate his unwitting betrayal.

Act IV. Scene I. Amneris, still in love with Radames, goes to him in prison and begs him to give up Aida, in return for which she will save him. But Radames, unable to live without his beloved Aida, intends to pay for his crime: conducted before the priests' tribunal he is condemned to being buried alive.

Act IV. Scene II. The scene is double: above is the interior of the Temple of Vulcan, below the crypt which will be Radames' tomb. The young man has been taken to his last resting place and a huge stone is lowered to close off the entrance, when suddenly Aida appears; she had hidden in the crypt in order to be with him to the last. Serenely they await together cruel death, while Amneris, in the temple, cries her lament.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
17. Board Game: El Grande [Average Rating:7.84 Overall Rank:27]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Il Trovatore by Giuseppe Verdi

The story:
In Biscay and Aragon, at the beginning of the 15th century.

Act I. The duel. In the hall of the Aliaferia palace a group of bodyguards await the count of Luna who spends his nights guarding the dwelling of Leonora, princess of Aragon. He is in love with her, but fears the arrival of the Troubadour, knowing that the princess' heart has been smitten by him. The chief bodyguard Ferrando narrates the events surrounding the burning at the stake of a gypsy for having bewitched the son of the old count of Luna; he also tells how her daughter Azucena, for revenge, kidnapped and burned at the stake the young boy. It is night. In the palace garden Leonora confides to her friend Ines her love for the Troubadour; the two women finally retire to their apartments where the count is hidden, determined to talk with Leonora. The Troubadur's song is heard in the distance; Loenora goes forth to embrace her beloved, but, confused by the darkness, she embraces the count instead. When the moon comes out from behind the clouds and illuminates the scene she discovers her error and throws herself at the feet of the Troubadour, begging his pardon. Outraged, the count orders the Troubadour to reveal his identity: he is Manrico, an exiled follower of the rebel Urgel. Leonora tries to intercede, but the two challenge each other to a duel. Leonora faints.

Act II. The gyspy. In the gypsys' camp Manrico (who, despite being wounded, has won the duel and spared the count's life) talks with his mother Azucena. The gypsy tells him of past events: to revenge her own mother's death she had kidnapped the count's son, but, blinded by rage, she had mistaken him for her own son at the moment she had thrown the baby onto the fire. Perturbed, be inquires about his own identity, but she remains elusive and tells him to think only of avenging her. A messenger brings news that Castellor has been beseiged by Ungel's army and that Leonora, thinking Manrico dead, has decided to enter a convent. Manrico hurries to intercept her. Near Castellor, the count is waiting for the passage of Leonora: his intention is to abduct her. The chorus of nuns is heard. Leonora is among them, and once more declares her intentions to Ines. When the count, with Ferrando and followers, arrive to take her away, Manrico with Urgel's men get there just in time, disarm the count, and leave with Leonora.

Act III. The gypsy's son. The count's army is camped near Castellor. The soldiers are certain that they will win tomorrow's battle. The lookouts take prisioner a gypsy that Ferrando recognises: she is Azucena, guilty of the atrocious infanticide. In vain, Azucena denies everything; brought before the thugs, she invokes Manrico's aid. The count thus realises that his prisoner is his rival's mother and sees an opportunity to vindicate his brother. In the chapel of Castellor, Manrico and Leonora get ready to be married. Ruiz, breathless, arrives to tell what has happened to Azucena. Manrico tells Leonora that Azucena is his mother and hurries away to save her.

Act IV. The execution. Manrico is held prisoner in the Aliaferia palace. Leonora, accompanied by Ruiz, goes to the palace and hears Manrico's last adieus, but, determined to save him, offers herself to the count in exchange for her beloved's life. Then, with the count's permission to give the news of his freedom personally to Manrico, she starts toward the prison. While the count gloats, she sucks the poison from a gem to keep herself from him. In the prison, Manrico comforts his mother. At Leonora's arrival, he guesses at what price she has bought his freedom for him and accuses her of betrayal. But as the effects of the poison start to take hold, he at last understands the nobility of her sacrifice and can only crumble in grief. The count arrives, realising he has been fooled by Leonora, who dies. Manrico is consigned to the soldiers, and the count obliges Azucena to watch the execution. But, to the overwelmed count, she declares, "He was your brother. The mother is avenged."
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
18. Board Game: Doctor Faust [Average Rating:5.12 Overall Rank:9802]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Faust by Charles Gounod

THE story is founded on the first part of Goethe's great drama, the scene taking place in a German town. Faust, an old and learned student, is in his study, philosophising on the unsatisfying results of his life's labours, his insatiable thirst for knowledge having brought him little reward; and, chafing at his advancing age, which will prevent his further studies, he summons to his assistance an Evil Spirit, who appears in the guise of a dashing cavalier, Mephistopheles, who persuades him to try life in a new form, promising him renewed youth, beauty, and wit, in exchange for his soul. The compact is made; and by the demoniacal powers of Mephistopheles, Faust is transformed into a handsome young cavalier, full of an eager desire for pleasure, and possessed with ample means for the gratifying of his wishes. Mephistopheles shows him in a vision a lovely village maiden, the gentle Margarita; and Faust, falling desperately in love with her, seeks an opportunity to gratify his longing. In this he is assisted by the evil Mephistopheles, who quickly finds an opportunity for bringing the pair together. Margarita, who is greatly beloved by her brother and guardian, Valentine, is left by him in the charge of an elderly dame named Martha, when he himself is called away to the wars; and Margarita being as virtuous a maiden as she is lovely, he feels that she will be safe until his return. Dame Martha, however, is not a very prudent guardian; for when Faust, having made the acquaintance of the lovely maiden, is brought to her retreat by Mephistopheles, the foolish Dame allows the lovers entire freedom for the satisfying of their passion, being herself too much occupied with the flatteries and attentions lavished upon her by the cunning Demon, in whom she only sees a very fascinating cavalier. At first Margarita resists her lover, but her own love is so strong that she is powerless to fight against it, and, being childishly innocent of the ways of the world, she is irresistibly led away from the paths of virtue. The awakening from her blissful dream comes at last, however; and when Valentine returns from the wars and hears of his sister's undoing, he furiously challenges her betrayer, and a fierce fight ensues. Faust has no wish to harm the brother of his beloved one, but Mephistopheles, by a dexterous movement, directs the sword of his protégé to the heart of Valentine, who falls dying at his feet. Margarita shrieks as her brother falls, and rushes to his side; but Valentine, with his last breath, curses her for the evil she has wrought. The poor girl is so overcome with horror at this terrible ending to her fair love-dream, and so harassed by the persecutions of her friends and neighbours, that her mind gives way, and in a sudden frenzy she takes the life of her new-born babe. For this unresponsible crime she is thrown into prison and condemned to death. Meanwhile Faust, who has been transported by Mephistopheles into other regions of pleasure, cannot forget his beloved Margarita, for whom he had conceived a true affection; and seeing in a vision that she is in trouble and danger, he will not rest until he sees her again. He therefore gains access to her prison, accompanied by Mephistopheles, and passionately implores the exhausted and grief-stricken girl to fly with him and thus escape the shameful death before her, Mephistopheles joining his entreaties also, hoping to thus gain another soul. But Margarita is now once more in her right mind, and resists the temptations which they bring before her; and, feeling only remorse and true repentance, she refuses all their entreaties, declaring that her only hope now is in Heaven, and the acceptance of her sincere prayers for forgiveness. Her prayers are answered, and ere the time arrives for her execution, the unhappy girl dies peacefully. Faust is overcome with grief; and even Mephistopheles is cowed, and shrinks back, baulked of his prey, as angel voices are heard rejoicing over the " sinner that repenteth," and welcoming the spirit of the gentle Margarita as it is carried by the angels into the realms of bliss.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
19. Board Game: Catan Austria / Wien meets Catan [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked] [Average Rating:6.50 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
Die Fledermaus by Johann Strauss II

ACT I. Vienna, 1890s. Through the windows of the Eisenstein home floats the serenade of Alfred, a tenor still in love with his old flame Rosalinde, now the wife of Gabriel von Eisenstein. Adele, a chambermaid, saunters in reading an invitation to a masked ball; Rosalinde, bedeviled by a headache and believing she has heard Alfred's voice, enters but finds only Adele. The maid asks for the evening off to visit a "sick aunt," a plea her mistress dismisses. Alfred steps into the room and begins to woo Rosalinde, who resists his verbal blandishments but melts on hearing his high A. The suitor leaves as Eisenstein and his lawyer, Blind, arrive from a session in court: Eisenstein has been sentenced to a fortnight in jail for a civil offense. No sooner does he dismiss the incompetent advocate than his friend Falke comes to invite Eisenstein to a masquerade, suggesting he bring along his repeater stop-watch, which charms all the ladies, so he can accumulate pleasant memories to sustain him during his confinement in jail. Rosalinde joins Adele in a bittersweet farewell to Eisenstein before he goes off to prison, got up, to his wife's surprise, in full evening dress. Sending Adele to her "aunt," Rosalinde receives the ardent Alfred. Their tête-à-tête is interrupted by the warden Frank, who mistakes Alfred for the man he has come to arrest. Rosalinde persuades Alfred to save her name by posing as her husband, and Frank carts him off to jail.

ACT II. In an antechamber at the palace of Prince Orlofsky, the nobleman's guests, Adele and her cousin Ida among them, await the arrival of their host. Orlofsky enters, quite bored — even with Falke's promise of a comedy of errors. The prince proclaims his guests free to do anything that suits their fancy — "Chacun à son gout." Adele, dressed in one of Rosalinde's most elegant gowns, laughs off Eisenstein's suggestion that she resembles his wife's chambermaid. Frank enters, and Rosalinde, also invited by Falke, arrives disguised as a temperamental Hungarian countess; she is soon wooed by her own reeling husband, whose pocket watch she steals to hold as proof of his philandering. Rosalinde agrees to sing a song about her "native" land, a spirited czardas, after which the guests move on to a magnificent dining area to toast the joys of wine, good fellowship and love. Champagne flows, and the guests dance wildly until dawn. When the clock strikes six, Eisenstein staggers off to keep his appointment at the jail.

ACT III. Moments later at the prison, Frosch, a drunken jailer, tries to keep order among the inmates, who are unable to sleep because of Alfred's singing. Frank arrives, still giddy with champagne, followed shortly by Ida and Adele, who, thinking him a theatrical agent, believes he might further her stage aspirations. Frank, hearing someone at the door, hides the girls in a cell and then admits Eisenstein, who has come to begin his sentence. The new prisoner is surprised to learn his cell is already occupied by a man who claims to be Eisenstein and who was found supping with Rosalinde; to obtain an explanation from the impostor, Eisenstein snatches a legal robe and wig from his astonished lawyer. No sooner is he disguised than Rosalinde hurries in to secure Alfred's release and press divorce charges against her errant husband. With her would-be paramour, she confides her flirtation to the "lawyer." Enraged, Eisenstein removes his disguise and accuses his wife of promiscuity, at which Rosalinde whips forth the watch she took from him at the ball. Orlofsky and his guests arrive to celebrate the reconciliation of Rosalinde and Eisenstein, singing a final toast as Eisenstein is taken away.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
20. Board Game: Elixir [Average Rating:5.55 Overall Rank:8773]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
flag msg tools
admin
designer
Roger's Reviews: check out my reviews page, right here on BGG!
badge
Caution: May contain wargame like substance
mb
L'elisir d'amore by Gaetano Donizetti

Act 1

The opening of this comic opera finds Nemorino, a poor peasant, in love with Adina, a beautiful landowner, who torments Nemorino with her indifference. When Nemorino hears Adina reading to her workers the story of Tristan and Iseult, he is convinced that a magic potion will gain Adina's love for him. He is afraid she loves the self-important Sergeant Belcore who appears with his regiment and immediately proposes marriage to Adina in front of everyone. The traveling quack salesman, Dulcamara (the self-proclaimed Dr. Encyclopedia), arrives, selling his bottled cure-all to the townspeople. Nemorino innocently asks Dulcamara if he has anything like Iseult's love potion. Dulcamara says he does, selling it to Nemorino at a price matching the contents of Nemorino's pockets. Unknown to Nemorino, the bottle contains only wine. And, in order to make a timely escape, Dulcamara tells Nemorino the potion will not take effect until the next day. Nemorino drinks it, feeling its effects immediately. Emboldened by the 'elixir' Nemorino encounters Adina, and although she teases him mercilessly, the audience senses that the attraction just might be mutual, were it not for the marriage proposal of the impressive and pompous sergeant. In fact, their wedding date had been set for six days hence. Nemorino's confidence that tomorrow he will win Adina by virtue of the elixir, causes him to act indifferently toward her. This upsets Adina, but she attempts to hide her feelings. Instead, she ups the ante as well by agreeing to Sergeant Belcore's alternate suggestion: that they marry immediately as he has just received orders that the regiment must ship off the next morning. Both Adina and the Sergeant gauge Nemorino's reaction to this news, the Sergeant with resentment, Adina with despair. Nemorino is, of course panicked, and cries out for Doctor Dulcamara to come to his aid.
"Dr. Dulcamara" (Andrew Foldi), an itinerate quack and purveyor of "elixirs" and other tonics, gestures to "Cochise" (Bruce Cooper), his sly trumpet playing assistant, to call together the townspeople as he sings his Act 1 (Scene 2) aria "Udite, udite, o rustici" ("Hear me, hear me, oh peasants") in a performance of the Cincinnati Opera's noted 1968 "Wild West" production of L'Elisir d'Amore in which the 1832 opera's setting was moved from rural Sicily to mid 19th Century Texas.

Act 2

Adina's outdoor wedding party is in full swing. Dr. Dulcamara is there, and performs a song with Adina to entertain the guests. The notary arrives to make the marriage official. Adina is sad to see that Nemorino has not appeared. Everyone goes inside to sign the wedding contract. But Dulcamara stays outside, helping himself to food and drink. Nemorino appears, having seen the notary, realizes that he has lost Adina. He sees the Doctor and frantically begs him for more elixir, of the type that will work immediately. But because Nemorino has no money, the Doctor refuses, disappearing inside. The Sergeant emerges, alone, wondering aloud why Adina has suddenly put off the wedding and the signing of the contract. Nemorino spots his rival, but is powerless to do anything. The Sergeant asks about Nemorino's dejection. When Nemorino says he has no money Belcore immediately suggests that if he joins the army he'll be paid immediately. He produces a contract, which Nemorino signs (with an X) in return for the cash Belcore gives him on the spot. Nemorino privately vows to fly to Dulcamara for more potion, while Belcore muses that he has easily dispatched of his rival by sending him off to war.

Later that evening the women of the village are gossiping that Nemorino is unaware that he has just inherited a large fortune from his deceased uncle. They spot Nemorino, who has clearly spent his military signing bonus, and has bought and consumed a large amount of 'elixir' (wine again) from Dr. Dulcamara. The women approach Nemorino with overly friendly greetings, the likes of which he has never seen. This is proof to Nemorino that this dose of the elixir has worked. Adina sees Nemorino in a jolly mood and, encountering Dr. Dulcamara, wonders what has gotten into him. Dulcamara, unaware that Adina is the object of Nemorino's affection, tells her the story of the smitten bumpkin who spent his last penny on the elixir, and even signed his life away, joining the army for money to get more, so desperate was he to win the love of some unnamed cruel beauty. Adina immediately realizes Nemorino's sincerity, and regrets teasing him. She falls for Nemorino, basking in the sincerity of his love. Dulcamara interprets this behavior as some sort of condition requiring a cure by one of his potions.

They depart. Nemorino appears alone, pensive, reflecting on a tear he saw in Adina's eye when he was ignoring her earlier. Based on that tear alone, he is sincerely convinced that Adina loves him. She enters, asking him why he has chosen to join the army and leave the town. When Nemorino says he's seeking a better life, Adina responds by telling him he is loved, and that she has purchased his military contract from Sergeant Belcore. She offers the cancelled contract to Nemorino, asking him to take it. He is free now. She says, however, that if he stays, he will no longer be sad. As he takes the contract Adina turns to leave. Nemorino believes she is abandoning him and flies in to a desperate fit, vowing that if he is not loved, if the elixir has not worked, and the Doctor has fooled him, then he might as well go off and die a soldier. Adina stops him and confesses that she loves him. Nemorino is ecstatic. Adina begs him to forgive her for teasing him. He does so with a kiss. The sergeant returns, seeing the two in an embrace. Adina explains that she loves Nemorino. The Sergeant tosses it off, noting that there are plenty of other women in the world. Dulcamara, his bags packed, pops out of a doorway, adding that he will happily provide elixir for the Sergeant's next conquest. A crowd has gathered by now, all agreeing that the elixir has done its job as they bid a fond farewell to the doctor.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
21. Board Game: 1960: The Making of the President [Average Rating:7.57 Overall Rank:109]
Pieter
Netherlands
Maastricht
flag msg tools
This too shall pass.
badge
Good intentions are no substitute for a good education.
mbmbmbmbmb
Nixon in China by John Adams

In Opera, there is a general predisposition towards Italy, which also shows in the Geeklist. Personally, I love opera but do not care much about most of the Italians. My preference goes to Russian, German, and American composers.

"Nixon in China" (1987) is the first opera of American composer John Adams. It tells a contemporary story of Nixon's seminal visit to The People's Republic of China.

The first act opens on the airfield outside Peking, where a delegation of the Chinese army sings a 1930's army song. The music swells, and the plane lands. Richard and Pat Nixon, Kissinger, and their entourage disembark. Nixon is greeted by premier Chou En-lai, and gives his opening speech, remembering that the whole of America is watching this historic moment. Nixon then meets with Chairman Mao, and has a philosphical/political discussion. After that, Nixon and his wife go to a banquet in their honor (this is probably my favorite scene). The evening progresses, starting out with rather stiff speeches and toasts, but becoming more and more relaxed because people get a little drunk, until the feast is bordering chaos.

The second act focusses on Pat Nixon, who is on a sightseeing tour, visiting many of the great sights around Peking, but also encountering some of the Chinese people. In the evening, Richard and Pat attend a performance of The Red Detachment of Women, a revolutionary ballet. The Nixons and Kissinger seem to be taking part in the play, Kissinger playing the role of the villain, and the Nixons being on the side of virtue. Chiang Ch'ing also joins the play, encouraging the oppressed peasant women to attack their adversaries.

The third act concentrates on the last night of the visit. Everyone is exhausted. They discuss their feelings, the weariness of their respective positions, and their pasts. The opera ends with a reflective aria sung by Chou En-lai.

Laid out like this, there does not seem to be much of a story here, and frankly, there isn't. However, the goal of the opera is not to tell a story, but to give an impression of a historic occasion. The first act concentrates on how the event is seen by the world. The second act concentrates on the scenery: the country and the people living there. The third act concentrates on the personalities of the main characters.

The libretto is magnificent, full of deep insights, humor, philosophy, and drama. The music is very diverse, sometimes subtle, sometimes grand. It is very unlike the "classic" operas, perhaps more like a film score. I think it is an exquisite combination of prose, music, song, and performance, and its beauty has literally brought tears to my eyes.


8 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
22. Board Game: Der Fliegende Holländer [Average Rating:6.05 Overall Rank:4073]
Jonathan Degann
United States
Westlake Village
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Der Fliegende Hollaender
(The Flying Dutchman)
- by Richard Wagner


How can you miss this one - the first game with a true opera's name? I had wanted to create an operatic geeklist some time ago - and it was all inspired by this game.

Norway, 1700s. An icy storm drives the sea captain Daland's ship miles beyond his home on the coast. As the sky suddenly darkens and the waters again grow rough, another ship, a ghostly schooner, arrives and drops anchor next to Daland's. Its captain, the Flying Dutchman, steps ashore, despairing of his fate. He once swore he would sail around the Cape of Good Hope if it took him forever, and the devil took him at his word. Once every seven years he may leave his ship in search of a woman who will redeem him from his deathless wandering if she gives him faithful, absolute love; failing this, he is condemned to roam the seas until the Day of Judgment. He tells Daland of his plight and offers a reward of gold and jewels for a night's lodging. Then, discovering that Daland has a young daughter, the Dutchman asks for her hand in marriage. Daland, seeing the extent of the stranger's wealth, immediately agrees. Instructing the Dutchman to follow, Daland sets sail for his home port.

At Daland's house, his daughter, Senta, dreamily watches village women as they spin and make sails. They tease the girl about her suitor, the huntsman Erik, but she remains in a trance. Staring at a portrait of the Flying Dutchman, she sings a ballad about the phantom captain. With burning intensity she prays that she may be the one to save him. Erik enters and, after the others have left, asks Senta to plead his cause with Daland. Noticing her preoccupation with the Dutchman's picture, he relates a frightening dream in which he saw her embrace the Dutchman and sail away in his ship. Senta exclaims that this is her own dream as well, and the despairing Erik rushes away. A moment later, the Dutchman himself stands before the girl. He tells her of his sad lot, and she vows to be faithful to him unto death. Daland blesses the union.

At the harbor, the villagers celebrate the sailors' return. They invite the Dutchman's crew to join them but are frightened away by the ghostly crew's weird chanting. Senta soon rushes in, pursued by Erik, who insists she has pledged her love to him. Overhearing this, the Dutchman believes himself betrayed and jumps aboard his ship. As horrified villagers crowd the shore, he reveals his name and nature and sets sail. Senta runs to the top of a cliff, triumphantly proclaiming herself faithful unto death, and leaps into the sea.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
23. Board Game: Tannhäuser [Average Rating:6.45 Overall Rank:1317]
Jonathan Degann
United States
Westlake Village
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Tannhäuser - by Richard Wagner

Clearly, there are not many Wagnerians contributing to this list!

This is an opera which these days has become known for the dirtiest opening scene in opera - directors love outdoing each other with their orgiastic portrayal of Venusberg.

ACT I. Medieval Germany. In the Venusberg, magical mountain abode of Venus, the minstrel Tannhäuser halfheartedly praises the goddess of beauty, who for more than a year has bestowed her love upon him. Venus promises greater revels when Tannhäuser asks for his freedom, but she curses his hopes of salvation when he longs for the simple pleasures and pains of earthly life. In response he calls on the Virgin Mary, and the Venusberg vanishes.

Tannhäuser finds himself in a sunny valley near the castle of the Wartburg, where passing pilgrims inspire him to laud the wonders of God. Horns announce the Landgrave Hermann and his knights, who recognize their long-lost comrade and invite him to the castle. One of them, Wolfram von Eschenbach, reminds Tannhäuser that in the past his singing won the love of Elisabeth, the landgrave's beautiful niece. On hearing her name, Tannhäuser embraces and joins his companions.

ACT II. In the Hall of Song in the Wartburg, Elisabeth hails the place where she first heard Tannhäuser's voice. Wolfram reunites the happy pair, who sing God's praises. As guests arrive, the landgrave promises Elisabeth's hand to the winner of a contest of love songs. Wolfram delivers an idealized tribute to Elisabeth, whom he too has loved. Tannhäuser, his soul still possessed by Venus, counters with a frenzied hymn to the pleasures of worldly love. Everyone is shocked, but Elisabeth protects Tannhäuser from harm, securing her uncle's pardon for her beloved on the condition that he make a pilgrimage to Rome to seek absolution.

ACT III. Several months later, Wolfram discovers Elisabeth at evening prayer before a shrine in the Wartburg valley. She searches among approaching pilgrims for Tannhäuser, but in vain. Broken, she prays to the Virgin to receive her soul in heaven. Wolfram, alone, asks the evening star to guide her on her way. Tannhäuser now staggers in wearily to relate that despite his abject penitence, the Pope decreed he could as soon be forgiven as the papal staff could break into flower. The desperate man calls to Venus, but she vanishes when Tannhäuser is reminded again by Wolfram of Elisabeth, whose funeral procession now winds down the valley. Tannhäuser collapses, dying, by her bier. A chorus of pilgrims enters, recounting a miracle: the Pope's staff, which they bear forward, has blossomed.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
24. Board Game: Heroscape Master Set: Rise of the Valkyrie [Average Rating:7.41 Overall Rank:192] [Average Rating:7.41 Unranked]
Jonathan Degann
United States
Westlake Village
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Die Walküre (The Valkyrie) -
by Richard Wagner

Poor Richard Wagner, don't get no respect.
Kill da wabbit!

ACT I. As a storm rages, Siegmund the Wälsung, exhausted from pursuit by enemies in the forest, stumbles into an unfamiliar house for shelter. Sieglinde finds the stranger lying by the hearth, and the two feel an immediate attraction. But they are soon interrupted by Sieglinde's husband, Hunding, who asks the stranger who he is. Calling himself "Woeful," Siegmund tells of a disaster-filled life ("Friedmund darf ich nicht heissen"), only to learn that Hunding is a kinsman of his foes. Hunding, before retiring, tells his guest to defend himself in the morning. Left alone, Siegmund calls on his father, Wälse, for the sword he once promised him. Sieglinde reappears, having given Hunding a sleeping potion. She tells of her wedding, at which a one-eyed stranger thrust into a tree a sword that thereafter resisted every effort to pull it out ("Der Männer Sippe"). Sieglinde confesses her unhappiness to Siegmund, whereupon he ardently embraces her and vows to free her from her forced marriage to Hunding. As moonlight floods the room, Siegmund compares their feeling to the marriage of love and spring ("Winterstürme"). Sieglinde hails him as "Spring" ("Du bist der Lenz") but asks if his father was really "Wolf," as he said earlier. When Siegmund gives his father's name as Wälse instead, Sieglinde rapturously recognizes him as Siegmund, her twin brother. The Wälsung now draws the sword from the tree and claims Sieglinde as his bride, rejoicing in the union of the Wälsungs.

ACT II. High in the mountains, Wotan, leader of the gods, tells his warrior daughter Brünnhilde she must defend his mortal son Siegmund. Leaving joyfully to do his bidding ("Hojotoho!"), the Valkyrie pauses to note the approach of Fricka, Wotan's wife and the goddess of marriage. Fricka insists he must defend Hunding's marriage rights against Siegmund, ignoring Wotan's implied argument that Siegmund could save the gods by winning back the Rhinegold from the dragon Fafner before the Nibelung dwarfs regain it. When Wotan realizes he is caught in his own trap - his power will leave him if he does not enforce the law - he agrees to his wife's demands. After Fricka has left in triumph, the frustrated god tells the returning Brünnhilde about the theft of the gold and Alberich's curse on it ("Als junger Liebe"). Brünnhilde is shocked to hear her father, his plans in ruins, order her to fight for Hunding. Then, alone in the darkness, she withdraws as Siegmund and Sieglinde approach. Siegmund comforts the distraught girl, who feels herself unworthy of him, and watches over her when she falls asleep. Brünnhilde appears to him as if in a vision, telling him he will soon go to Valhalla (Todesverkündigung: "Siegmund! Sieh auf mich!"), but when he says he will not leave Sieglinde and threatens to kill himself and his bride if his sword has no power against Hunding, she decides to help him in spite of Wotan's command. She vanishes. Siegmund bids farewell to Sieglinde when he hears the approaching Hunding's challenge. When Siegmund is about to win, however, Wotan appears and shatters his sword, leaving him to be killed by Hunding. Brünnhilde escapes with Sieglinde and the broken sword. Wotan contemptuously fells Hunding with a wave of his hand and leaves to punish Brünnhilde.

ACT III. On the Valkyries' Rock, Brünnhilde's eight warrior sisters - who have gathered there briefly, bearing slain heroes to Valhalla - are surprised to see her enter with Sieglinde. When they hear she is fleeing Wotan's wrath, they are afraid to hide her. Sieglinde is numb with despair until Brünnhilde tells her she bears Siegmund's child. Eager to be saved, she receives the pieces of the sword from Brünnhilde and ecstatically thanks her rescuer as she rushes off into the forest to hide near Fafner's cave, a place safe from Wotan. When the god appears, he sentences Brünnhilde to become a mortal woman, silencing her sisters' objections by threatening to do the same to them. Left alone with her father, Brünnhilde pleads that in disobeying his orders she was really doing what he wished ("War es so schmählich"). Wotan will not relent: she must lie in sleep, booty for any man who finds her. But as his anger abates she asks the favor of being surrounded in sleep by a wall of fire that only the bravest hero can pierce. Both sense this hero must be the child that Sieglinde will bear. Sadly renouncing his daughter ("Leb' wohl"), Wotan kisses Brünnhilde's eyes with sleep and mortality before summoning Loge, the spirit of fire, to encircle the rock. As flames spring up, the departing Wotan invokes a spell forbidding the rock to anyone who fears his spear (Fire Music).
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
25. Board Game: Nuclear Proliferation [Average Rating:6.52 Overall Rank:1848]
Jonathan Degann
United States
Westlake Village
California
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Dr. Atomic - by John Adams

Scene 1. The Manhattan Project laboratory, Los Alamos, New Mexico. June, 1945
Work on the atomic bomb approaches its culminating point, led by physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer and Army Commander General Leslie Groves. Since the surrender of Germany, many of the scientists have begun to question the necessity of using the bomb against Japan. Edward Teller and Robert Wilson are especially troubled by the moral and social implications and try to convince the others to sign a petition to President Truman. Oppenheimer admonishes them. He has just returned from Washington and describes the decision to bomb Japanese cities, focusing on civilian targets.

Scene 2. The Oppenheimers’ house in Los Alamos
Oppenheimer answers the concerned questions of his wife, Kitty, with verses by one of their favorite poets, Baudelaire. For a few brief moments, they are transported into the intoxicated climate of the poem. Left alone, Kitty thinks about the contradictions of peace, war, and love.

Scene 3. The “Trinity” test site at Alamogordo, New Mexico. July 15, 1945
It is the night of the test of the first atomic bomb. A massive electrical storm is lashing the test site, and the bomb, partially armed and hoisted on a high tower, is in danger of being struck by lightning. Chief Meteorologist Frank Hubbard warns the frustrated General Groves that attempting the test in these conditions is extremely dangerous. Captain Nolan of the Army Medical Corps tries to impress upon Groves the deadly toxic properties of plutonium and radiation poisoning, which are only just beginning to be understood. As panic starts to take hold, the general dismisses all staff to confer with Oppenheimer alone. The physicist gently humors Groves about his chronic weight problems, and Groves leaves to get some sleep. Oppenheimer faces his own personal crisis alone in the desert, recalling a sonnet by John Donne that inspired him to name the test site “Trinity”: “Batter my heart, three-person’d God.”


Act II
Scene 1. The Oppenheimers’ house
Two hundred miles from the test site, Kitty and her Indian maid, Pasqualita, watch the night sky for signs of the explosion. Pasqualita occasionally checks on the Oppenheimers’ sleeping child. Kitty again reflects on war, death, and the resurrection of the spirit.

Orchestral Interlude
Rain over the Sangre de Cristos Mountains. Seven-month-old Katherine Oppenheimer awakens, crying. Pasqualita comforts her, singing a lullaby.

Scene 2. The test site. Midnight, July 16, 1945
All personnel have been cleared from the blast area. Wilson and Jack Hubbard are at the bomb tower, making last-minute measurements ordered by Groves. Both are extremely worried about testing the bomb in the middle of an electrical storm. At the observation bunker, the scientists discuss the possibility that the detonation might set off an uncontrolled chain reaction ending in the destruction of the earth’s atmosphere. Oppenheimer claims that such a result is not possible. With the rain still coming down, Groves disregards all warnings about the storm, and Oppenheimer orders everybody to prepare for the test shot at 5.30 A.M.

Scenes 3 and 4
Groves is plagued by fears of sabotage, while Oppenheimer is in a state of extreme nervous exhaustion. Everyone waits, each absorbed in his own thoughts. The men make bets, trying to guess the yield of the bomb. Oppenheimer surprises everyone by his pessimistic prediction, and even Groves is unable to conceal his waning faith. Suddenly, the night sky is filled with a terrifying vision of Vishnu as described in the Bhagavad Gita: “At the sight of this, your Shape stupendous, full of mouths and eyes … terrible with fangs … when I see you, Vishnu … with your mouths agape and flame-eyes staring—all my peace is gone; my heart is troubled.” At zero minus ten minutes, a warning rocket is fired and a siren sounds. Then the storm breaks, and the sky over Ground Zero suddenly clears. Another warning rocket goes off, and at zero minus 60 seconds, a third one signals the final countdown. Base Camp resembles an outpost of the dead: rows of scientists and Army personnel lying facedown in shallow ditches. There is no movement or whisper of activity, only the rhythmic countdown over the loudspeaker. At zero minus 45 seconds, an engineer flips the switch for the automatic timer. The triggering circuits begin to fire. “Zero minus one.” There is an eerie silence, and then an era begins.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Loading... | Locked Hide Show Unlock Lock Comment     View Previous {{limitCount(numprevitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
{{error.message}}
{{comment.error.message}}
    View More Comments {{limitCount(numnextitems_calculated,commentParams.showcount)}} / {{numnextitems_calculated}} 1 « Pg. {{commentParams.pageid}} » {{data.config.endpage}}
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.