“Last night feels like it was a dream. A hazy, rainbow-colored dream.” -Allegra Libonati, assistant director, the night after the gala
After the premiere, the entire cast and crew of the opera joined the guests at a black tie gala at the Hotel de Paris, next door to the Monte Carlo Opera House. Futurum spared no expense in throwing the party – we entered the grand ballroom through a multicolored tunnel of VersaTubes, in homage to the colorful walls Simon inhabits for most of the show. “We are going into the System,” joked technical coordinator Bob Hsiung, backing up through the tunnel in a grandiose display that almost knocked several people over. (This was, of course, in reference to Nicholas’s line in Scene 7 where he sings, of Evvy, “She is going into the System,”)(or, okay, maybe you just had to be there..)
Most of the evening centered around a few speeches, first from Madame Kawther Al-Abood – who spoke of that fateful meeting with Tod over ten years ago – and second from Mr. Dana Mead, chairman emeritus of the MIT Corporation who had come to Monaco on behalf of MIT President Susan Hockfield. Mr. Mead then introduced Tod, without whom none of this would have been possible.
I wish I could describe what exactly the room felt like at that time – that is, after all, my job – or that I could even show you a video of what it was like; alas, I wasn’t able to film much of the gala (hence the one-minute clip below). But I can tell you this: there was a lot of gratitude being thrown around that night, and it wasn’t just from all the thanks given from Madame Al-Abood or Mr. Mead or even Tod. As Tod took the mike and we stood, a table full of bot operators and audio technicians and producers and, well, me – I knew we all felt the same. So in case you weren’t able to make it, thank you to everyone who made this opera a reality.
“To the Opera of the Recent Past,” Bob joked, and we laughed and raised our glasses.