When Pablo Neruda accepted the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1971, he was beloved by his Chilean countryman and respected worldwide for his elegant sonnets and often sensual poems, some addressed to tomatoes, to salt, to a pair of knitted socks. Chilean novelist Antonio Skarmeta in 1985 based his novella Il Postino on Neruda’s life story, and that story is the basis for a successful film of the same name. Now, in the year of the 200th anniversary of the independence of both Chile and Mexico, another interpretation has arrived with the premiere at LA Opera of composer Daniel Catan’s work, written for and starring Placido Domingo as Neruda. As the composer and music professor sits down with Patt, we hear about the inspiration and influences that spurred him to take on this complex and fascinating subject.
*Il Postino premieres at LA Opera on Thursday, September 23rd, with performances through October 16th
Daniel Catan, composer and Professor of Music at the College of the Canyons