The first installment of The Cosmic Opera (Act I) opened to a two 2-night sold out show held at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City last week. Friday’s event brought attendee’s in full party mode with a line stretching down 34th street, anxiously waiting to begin the 6 hour musical journey. Conceptualized as an “extrasensory experience” blending electronic dance music with interpretive live performance and character storyline, Cosmic Opera has made it’s first attempt to bring forth a fresh new perspective within the EDM genre.
Upon entry guests were greeted by progressive house beats by energetic Dutch duo NO_ID along with an oversized chandelier structure and disco ball creating the focal point on the main floor. Thomas Gold took to the stage next with his hard hitting set featuring his version of Judas. The energy was apparent, but the sound quality was underwhelming, with excessive heavy bass and a muffled low hum for the duration of the evening. In between each DJ set costume adorned performers in baby doll dresses, fishnets and top hats made their rounds across the balcony levels, along with variety of novice stage dancers and acrobatic performances providing short aerial rope & drape segments to entertained the crowd.
By this time the venue was packed with neon clad youth’s and industry professionals alike. The most memorable performance artist of the night was with the mezzo-soprano opera singer Hai-Ting Chinn who was stunning and captivated the audience wearing a sci-fi gown descending down the stairs making her way to the stage to introduce Axwell of Swedish House Mafia.
Over 3 hours into the festivities the crowd was whipped into a frenzy and ready for the man of the hour Axwell to perform. Opening with his most recent remix of In My Mind (Ivan Gough & Feenixpawl) behind an organ style DJ setup, he continued with favorable crowd anthems of Calling, Save the World, Levels, along with remixes of Paradise (Coldplay), Otherside (Red Hot Chilli Pepper’s) under and exceptional and syncopated laser light showcase.
In conclusion the Cosmic Opera is ambitious, attempting to build further electronic music awareness and outreach among existing fans and newer audiences. This in itself is not a new formula, but we can appreciate the immediate reasoning and potential results- push the EDM niche genre to new heights, by guiding the today’s youth counter culture in appreciating performance artistry and stage production. ACT I of Cosmic Opera has numerous pro’s such as providing guests the chance to dance and mingle in a cabaret style setting, top of the line talent along with a state of the art light show display. We’re optimistic that the upcoming performances scheduled for April and May will present a more cohesive show by streamlining their storyline, even more diversified talent and enhancement in sound quality. Stay tuned for ACT II details and dates to follow.