ENCHANTED ISLAND, THE
"The best opera Handel and Vivaldi never wrote"
What happens when director-writer-composer extraordinaire Jeremy Sams brings together two parts Shakespeare, liberal doses of Handel, Vivaldi, and Rameau, and is joined by Baroque specialist William Christie, the director-designer team of Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch, and a fabulous cast of opera singers from David Daniels and Joyce DiDonato to Danielle de Niese, Luca Pisaroni, and Plácido Domingo? The Enchanted Island is one of the first modern-day takes on the pastiche, an 18th-century musical-theater genre made up of pieces from existing operas and oratorios, along with a new libretto. The score features a selection of hits and rarities by the aforementioned trio of Baroque composers (and a few others). The plot shipwrecks the lovers from "A Midsummer Night’s Dream" on Prospero’s island from "The Tempest". There’s also a deus ex machina-style appearance by Domingo as Neptune and a full-fledged, masque-like ballet extravaganza.