Phantasmagoria: Seduction and Psychosis explored disintegration of self through the central character of Herman in The Queen of Spades, in a new version of the libretto by Neil Bartlett for Opera North.
The movement rhythm of solid video projection beams through haze changed with Herman’s mood – becoming more frenetic as Herman became more agitated. No ‘end’ projection image was seen, just the beams travelling through space.
As Herman’s paranoia intensified he spoke the words of other characters discussing him, as if hearing voices.
The soundtrack wove klezma and classical, alluding to Herman’s conflicted low (folk) background in the high court (classical) setting.