Artaserse, Baroque opera, Graphic novel, Persian history, Pietro Metastasio, The Idle Woman, What If...
Remember The Idle Woman’s wonderful graphic novel? Because, really how often do you find a Baroque opera turned into a comic? And Persian history? And a delightful, ever so slightly tongue-in-cheek approach?
Well, Artaserse is now complete with a thrilling third act, and you can find it here. And there is also a historical appendix in which the characters of the opera and their real-life counterparts tell (in first person) how things really went. The real story and the way Metastasio tweaked history to make it more operatic make for fascinating reading. I confess the appendix sparked off a game of What If, and I’m now busy imagining a different opera with Megabise as the hero…
Thank you again for all your enthusiasm! I had to laugh when you suggested an opera based on Megabise. I’ve been saying that to my friends ever since I started uncovering the truth behind the story back in January. I’ve have been guilty of much excitable waffling, punctuated with, “And then he did THIS!!!” I just don’t understand why Metastasio wrote the story he did, considering there was such a great tale there already waiting to be told. One of my long-term projects now is trying to tell that story in another form, but only time will tell whether I ever finish that or am brave enough to share it in some way. For now, I’m so, so pleased you enjoyed the comic and I’m very grateful to you for actually taking the time to write blog posts about it – I still can’t quite get over that 😉
la Clarina said:
You are very welcome – and indeed, thank YOU. I love your Artaserse for many reasons, and it has sparked off several ideas… The Megabise opera being just one. I confess I’m thinking something a little later than Baroque, though – with one of those tormented barytone heroes…
But never mind me. I’m constantly making up toy operas for fun. Not that I go anywhere with them – except in a couple of instances, one being a novel partly centred on a never-written Felice Romani libretto.
But so, you see, I’m very much with you when it comes to playing games with opera, and also to waffling excitably about more or less obscure historical characters.
I really hope you will retell Artaserse’s story with Megabise as the hero – and that we, your readers, will have a chance to enjoy it.