BY Jason Victor Serinus,

The potential trouble with Leonard Bernstein’s Trouble in Tahiti, one that you will not encounter in Opera Parallèle’s wonderful new production, is that it piles cliché upon cliché. Premiered in June 1952 at the composer’s Festival of the Creative Arts at Brandeis University, the 40 or so minute “Opera in Seven Scenes” wickedly demolishes the smiling façade of post-WWII suburban life, showing it to be hollow, empty, and filled with duplicity. Scenes of the wife spilling everything to a disinterested, Camel-puffing, pill-pushing psychiatrist as the husband toys with his secretary at the office and attempts to prove his manhood at the gym are as familiar as the ultimate cliché of suburban life, and the garage filled with a Nash Rambler and Cadillac (both of which my family owned).

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