Lavish! As befits a queen.
“Right, now for the opera part,” said Freddie Mercury, lifted his gaze from behind the piano, and stared at his baffled bandmates with a confident look in his eyes. The year of 1975 was just a few months old, The Queen were working toward their fourth album, and the legendary singer wanted to present his musical ideas for the record to the band. Daring, crazy ideas. Bombastic choir parts, neck-breaking guitar solos, sarcastic recitative, and lyrics that combined a murderer, Galileo, Figaro, Beelzebub, and Scaramouche – the evil clown figure from Commedia dell’arte – all in a single breath. Seriously? Seriously. Oh, so seriously.
After weeks of rehearsals (legend has it that they rehearsed the vocal parts for up to ten hours a day) and three weeks of what, at the time, were revolutionary recording sessions (after mixing they recorded just under 200 additional tracks onto the piece) Bohemian Rhapsody was born, a six-minute fifty-five second piece that, despite the revolt by their record label and radio editors, who at first categorically refused to play such a long track in their shows, cooked up a literal storm among their fans and stormed to the top of UK’s Christmas music chart and stayed there for a staggering nine straight weeks. Everything else is history. A Night at the Opera became the most famous album of the 1970s and gave birth to a genre that is until this day most closely associated with Queen – art rock.
We are about to witness it in the best possible iteration. The greatest hits of the legendary band will be performed live by soloist, a symphony orchestra, and choir, just as bombastic and lavish as Freddie envisioned. For that matter, we couldn’t envision a more fitting tribute to the genius who gave us rock anthems like We are the Champions, We Will Rock You, Another One Bites the Dust, or Don’t Stop Me Now.
So, what about you? Get on. Don’t let anybody stop you!
Choir and Orchestra of the Opera of Serbian National Theatre Novi Sad
Big band Novi Sad
Fedor Vrtačnik, conductor
Soloists: Mattia Zanata, Zoran Šandorov, Nikola Mijić, and special guest Bojana Stamenov