Ben Heppner Originates Peg-Legged Roll

One of the many subplots surrounding the Dallas Opera’s production of Moby Dick is the physical feat Canadian superstar tenor Ben Heppner is forced to undertake as Ahab, a Wagnerian-sized role on stage for the vast majority of the show, playing the role of a maniacally obsessive ship captain battling a whale with . . . wait for it . . . only one leg. The singer was fitted for his peg leg by costume designers in New York, and last week he was in full regalia showing off the getup he will have to wear – and drag – around stage for the better part of two hours. In additional to listing to music and enjoying the theatrics of the opera, Moby Dick audiences will be treated to a kind of Survivor-esque reality TV show Friday night: Will Ben make it through? Jump for a photo of Heppner in full costume, as well as clip of Heppner singing “Im fernen Land” from Wagner’s Lohengrin with James Levine conducting. With pipes like that, we are going to end up loving Ahab. That’s not right, is it?

Ben Heppner as Ahab (Photos: Elizabeth Lavin)

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