Salome: Obsession to the max!
By Lina de la Torre
I attended the Portland Opera production of Salome recently. I had not seen the opera and I had mixed feelings about the experience prior to the performance. I had listened to the music ahead of time and wondered if I would like the opera as I have tended to prefer a more lyrical style of music and the score by Richard Strauss is rarely melodic, almost dissonant at times. I was very pleasantly surprised to find that the score somehow, oddly fits perfectly with this biblical story that has been revamped to modern times thanks to the German libretto by the composer, based on Hedwig Lachmann’s German translation of the French play Salomé by Oscar Wilde. In fact, the music feels so modern even today that it is hard to believe the opera is more than 100 years old. I can only imagine the reaction that the audiences must have had in 1905 when it was first presented.