The Collins Center for the Arts Presents Gaetano Donizetti’s Roberto Devereux from The Met

roberto    Queen Elizabeth is forced to sign the death warrant of a nobleman who she is in love with. Yet, if he pledges his absolute loyalty and devotion it may be able to be dissuaded. After all, he is an influential member of the court of the Queen of England. The opera carries it own brand dramatic conviction as each character is unique in their plight. Sadness overwhelms the performance as the Queen’s demand for unshakable allegiance spirals her into a jealous rage, near frenzy, for she realizes Roberto’s love for Sara as her own maddening anger becomes bitter resentment. Death of lovers shrouds the stage with confrontation and allegations as the Queen is haunted by a headless corpse screaming for vengeance. The opera is raw and emotional with an extraordinary musical accompaniment. What a way to end this wonderful series at The Collins Center for the Arts. See you all next season.

The Collins Center for the Arts Presents Elektra from The Met…

elektra   Once again the milk of human kindness is utterly depleted as the incorporation of tragedy predestines the outcome of an early twentieth century setting deep in the chasms of Greece. This is a most psychological thriller in its rarest form delving into the inner doldrums of the human mind. The story engages a primal scream for vengeance, murder, and the breaking of ones mental state, enough to enter into such a realm. Strauss elaborates this mythological masterpiece with an overwhelming onslaught of orchestral musical power, enticing the scenes and interpolating the unleashing of the masterful voices loosed within this entrancing tale which encompasses Elektra’s very soul to the brink at the edge of the world from where there is no return.

Puccini’s Madame Butterfly at The Collins Center for the Arts from The Met

MadamaButterflyThumb   A naval officer determined to marry a Japanese girl whom he has never met is determined to make such an event work in his favor. However, not everyone is in a true accord with such a premise. A trail of broken hearts as wide as the sea assaults the senses in this masterful opera by Puccini. There is a stroke of imperialism within the boundaries if one may read between the lines making this piece almost controversial in its time and even somewhat in present day. The lyrics are especially impressive, delving deeply into the human heart and the situation at hand. Love appears as an idiosyncratic illusion in this mighty tale almost devoid of love as one would think. But the nature of opera either balances the scales of love or replicates its own justice.

Big G’s Deli (home of the Godzilla sandwich)

FSCN0038_088  Forget about getting less and paying more. When you walk through the doors at Big G’s Deli in Waterville Maine prepare yourself for a time travel back in time. Not only is the food amazing, but the sandwiches are so gargantuan you’ll need to pause before finishing the last bite. FSCN0051_096These dinosaur size hand held monsters will make you happy you skipped breakfast (which they provide heartily as well).  FSCN0042_091Choose celebrity named cold cuts bountifully placed onto fresh baked bread, or throw yourself into a delectably spiced massive burrito or a whole host of other possibilities.FSCN0035_086 Order a night of Italian food with your choice of pastas served with bread (of course). Have a salad on the side or make it a meal. There are so many finds on the menu, you’ll just have to take your time and choose wisely. Then again…you could always just come back and bring home a whopper of a whoopie pie.FSCN0064_100

The Collins Center for the Arts Presents “George Bernard’s Manon Lescaut” from the Met

opera   A woman who’s seeded passion for love, life, and luxury in the setting of France is bursting at the seams as her deception destroyed by her inner conflicts with attaining love and the opposing wealth and power tipping the scales of her judgement becomes a raging obsession. Leaving the simple life she once held as a country girl, her escalation into power overshadows her in a tyrannous journey to taking on the role of a Parisian temptress. The climb to her goal inflicts a deep rooted passion engaged by an onslaught between true happiness and the quest for position. George Bernard’s highly acclaimed masterpiece has been readily compared to the works of Verdi and still holds its valor in this complex and chivalrous tale of adoration and the devil’s gain.

The Collins Center for the Arts Presents from the Met Georges Bizet’s Les Pecheurs de Perles

les pecheurs   As two men vow an eternal friendship, their solemn oath is threatened by the love for the same woman, Leila. She is faced with usurping her sacred promise as a priestess through a dilemma in which she must choose between secular love and breaking her pious consecration. The pearl divers who compete for her affections and marriage become involved in a wildly oceanic world in which unbridled passion, longing, and ultimately vengeance leads to betrayal intertwining romance with hatred. Come see as our story unfolds itself casting pearls before swine at the Collins Center for the Arts.

Danny Harper: It’s Who I Am (unconditional honesty no matter what)

danny harper     I waited to feature this amazing album until now so that it would ring fresh for the rest of the coming year. It has certainly been a long time in any genre where truth and honesty in words and music has taken a front seat before the glitz, glam, and gunk which has been filling up the airwaves for far too long has been ousted. A most refreshing collection of country music the way it ought to be has arrived in the form of one Danny Harper. Having seen him in concert has only strengthened this sentiment. His open hearted commentary about his life, his experiences (good or bad), and definite appreciation of our country and all that once made it great is exemplified deep within the doldrums of his songs. Whether they rock you, lull you. or bring you a smile, this man has captured the essence that makes us truly fulfilled, the love of God, true patriotism, and good old fashioned country music unadulterated by commercialism. The title speaks for itself, as does the man.