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Eric Sean Fogel - DIRECTOR/CHOREO.

Rob Ainsley - MUSIC DIRECTOR

Hayley E. Wallenfeldt -SCENIC DESIGN


Rachel Fields - LIGHTING DESIGN


Corey Cochran - COSTUME DESIGN

Photography: Evan Zimmerman &

   H. Wallenfeldt

Love and War

August 2023

Pavilion, Glimmerglass Festival

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Music  Claudio Monteverdi || Libretto  Torquato Tasso

Il combattimento di Tancredi e Clorinda/Lamento della ninfa

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Love and War, conceived by Rob Ainsley, takes two pieces from the Eight Book of Madrigals and marries them into a performance.

Journey back to the very beginnings of opera to witness two medieval knights locked in mortal combat! Extracts from Monteverdi’s masterful Eighth Book of Madrigals recount every detail of the battle with staggering freshness and pathos. Set to new choreography by Eric Sean Fogel the piece interpreted the tragedy, romance, and complex legacy of the Crusades in the 21st century.

For my interpretation of these pieces being joined was the impact that the warring Christian and Islamic cultures had on each other. These lovers had a lasting impact in each others lives and so too unintentionally did the crusades bring art and architecture back to the Christian world from the Islamic one. An Islamic proverb states the "arch never sleeps" The pointed arch and many shapes iconic of gothic architecture are ripped straight from the Islamic world. The pointed arch first became a part of European architecture through Monteverdi's home state of Italy. From Illuminated Christian Bibles to modern kitchen mosaics, the Christian world is influenced by the beauty of divine geometry of Islamic art. In Arabic the general term for love and the word for war are only one letter off from each other. I do not think Monteverdi consciously put these parallels into his Il combattimento but the fine line between contempt and infatuation is nevertheless present in the piece and thus present in the world between Christian and Islamic art we set it in.

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Process Work

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