Entranced by this Siren’s Song

Hawaii Opera Theatre presents Siren Song, a modern opera, in Kaka‘ako.

Collage by Noa Emberson

Over the course of the past few years, Kaka‘ako has become home to a myriad of eclectic events, hip cafés, foodie restaurants, and cocktail bars geared toward young creatives. From carefully poured espresso to whiskey confections and fixed-gear bikes, it’s clear that the trendsetters have taken over. So it wouldn’t be surprising if you raise an eyebrow when you hear the news that the opera is coming to the Kaka‘ako area.

Hawaii Opera Theatre, more commonly referred to as HOT, will be showcasing a series of performances of the contemporary opera Siren Song in a warehouse in the area. Unlike traditional operas, however, this opera is set in the modern era and features an oh-so-relevant storyline about a young British sailor “catfished” (duped, in Generation Millennial terminology) into a relationship with a model who’s, well, definitely not a model. And definitely not a woman.

“We’re excited to introduce a modern opera to Kaka‘ako and a new audience,” says Simon Crookall, executive director for HOT. “This isn’t your typical opera, and we felt that performing it in a nontraditional location like a warehouse in Kaka‘ako was a perfect fit. If you love music, theatre, and a great storyline all rolled into one very accessibly modern opera, then you’re going to love Siren Song.”

True to life, the plot of Siren Song is elaborate and rich, with plot twists that could only be pulled from true events. “When I first came across the true story, which inspired Siren Song, I knew it had to become an opera,” says Jonathon Dove, who wrote the opera. “What initially appears to be a simple story of a sailor duped by a con man turns out to have surprising depths. … It is a story about the power of the imagination, and how we invent the people we love.”

Sound like the kind of culture you can get behind? You can purchase tickets for Siren Song, along with tickets for the upcoming season, which includes The Flying Dutchman and Sweeney Todd, online now.

Siren Song takes place March 20–22 at 445 Cooke St. Showtimes are 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.; tickets $50–$75. For more information, visit hawaiiopera.org.

Make it a night out! Nearby Kaka‘ako vendors have offered discounts of 15% off (Honolulu Beerworks & Cocina) and 10% off (Highway Inn) from through the end of March when you present your ticket to Siren Song.

Originally published in ourfoundry.com.

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