Barcelona’s opera house has reopened, and its first performance post-lockdown saw audiences literally planted in their seats.
Organisers said the intention was to reflect on the absurdity of the human condition in the era of the coronavirus, which deprives people of their position as spectators.
“Nature advanced to occupy the spaces we snatched from it,” executive producer Eugenio Ampudio said on stage at an afternoon rehearsal, where 2,292 nursery plants already occupied every seat before the evening concert.
“Can we extend our empathy? Let’s begin with art and music, in a great theatre, by inviting nature in,” he added inside the eclectic, neo-classical venue that is one of Europe’s largest.
After the concert, to be live streamed from here, the plants will be donated to frontline health workers.
The “Concert for the Biocene” was enabled by the end of Spain’s state of emergency on Sunday. It was to feature a string quartet playing Italian composer Giacomo Puccini’s “Chrysanthemum”, chosen for its requiem-like sadness.