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About Nixon In China
Bord Gáis Energy Theatre are delighted that one of the most renowned operas of our generation, John Adams' Nixon in China, will be unveiled this summer for what promises to be a truly spectacular, one of a kind event.
Following on from the fantastic 5-star success of Wagner’s Tristan & Isolde, Irish company Wide Open Opera mark their return to The Bord Gáis Energy Theatre with a production that is guaranteed to be the must see opera event in Ireland.
Set in Peking (Beijing) in February 1972, the opera acts as a psychological insight into the political minds of East and West as US President Richard Nixon makes a ground-breaking visit to communist China, meeting the elderly Mao Tse-tung. Opening on the runway of a chilly Peking airfield, the arrival of President and Mrs Nixon in Air force One has become an iconic moment of contemporary opera.
This meeting an hour later with Mao has unexpected political twists where our notions of Right and Left are twisted and undermined. The global repercussions from this crucial meeting are never far from the conversation. Later at a euphoric banquet, Nixon boldly announces "Just let me say one thing. I opposed China. I was wrong". Everybody drinks to each other's health. In one day a global barrier has been smashed.
Act II is dominated by the political wives. Mrs Nixon is taken on a tour around Peking accompanied by journalists. She gives insights into her own life and her views. Chiang Ch'ing (Madame Mao), however, is less conciliatory. She organises a performance of the ballet "The Red Detachment of Women" charting the mistreatment of a peasant girl under her slave master, but her escape and flowering in the Red Army. Mrs Nixon is so repulsed by the violence in the ballet that she intervenes.
Act III is a reflection where the leaders have an opportunity to think of their past and convince themselves that they did the right thing.
Nixon in China brings together a stunning line-up of international and Irish singers and creative team.