April 2013

Adult Super-vision: On the set with supernumerary Diana Harris

The Major Orchestra Librarians' Association (MOLA) conference, which took place in Portland this weekend, is officially wrapped. It was a TREMENDOUS success -- the Oregon Symphony librarians totally nailed it. But I am exhausted! That's why this post is a day later than usual.


I have a lot to tell you about the conference, which I'll do in next week's post. In the meantime, this week I bring you a report from the Falstaff frontlines from board member Diana Harris, who is a supernumerary in our production.



I've loved opera for as long as I can remember. Why? With story, singers, orchestra, costumes, and sets, opera is the ultimate combination of music, theater, often dance, and the visual arts. Sometimes an opera needs a supernumerary or two. "Supernumerary" means "one who appears onstage without speaking lines or as part of a crowd" (Random House Dictionary of the English Language). They're referred to as "supers."


As an opera lover who is neither singer nor musician, I wanted to be a "super" for decades; it was the only way I could be in the middle of the music. The current production of Falstaff, in which I am one of two adult "supers" in the final scene, is the fifth time I've been privileged to do so.