OC Archives: Catherine Cook as Ježibaba in Rusalka (2011)

Catherine Cook as Ježibaba in Opera Colorado’s 2011 production of Rusalka.

By: Suzanne Whitney

Many describe Antonín Dvořák’s Rusalka as the operatic Little Mermaid; however, it is anything but a Disney fairy tale. The libretto, written by Czech poet Jaroslav Kvapil, follows the traditional Czech folk tale of Rusalka, a water nymph who falls in love with a human prince. This video showcases the incredible mezzo-soprano Catherine Cook as the sea witch, Ježibaba. In act one Rusalka seeks assistance from Ježibaba after she declares her love for the prince in the beloved aria, “Song to the Moon.” 

During “Čury mury fuk” Rusalka visits Ježibaba’s lair. This aria is Ježibaba’s incantation to create a potion that will trade Rusalka’s voice and immortality for a human body and a chance to find love with her prince. The story may not have a happy ending, but Catherine Cook’s performance is enchanting.

If you are interested in seeing more performances by Catherine, register for free access to April in Paris, a new digital performance available on demand April 15-29, 2021. Learn more>>

Videography by: Brad Stabio

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