In March 2015, I was commissioned to paint a work of art inspired by L’Aiglon (The Eaglet), an opera in five acts, set to Alexandrine verse by Edmond Rostand. The Opera paints a picture of Napoleon’s son, Napoléon François Charles Joseph Bonaparte, who was at birth proclaimed King of Rome. While he sought to free himself from the shadow of his illustrious father, he ended up simply following in his father’s footsteps.
I was asked to execute my portrait of Napoleon II in real time at the Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal (OSM) before and during intermissions of the March 17th, 19th and 21st concerts.
In addition, under the direction of the marketing firm LNDMRK, Montreal video production company BLVD streamed a video of me painting in the lobby onto the outside of the street facades of the Kennedy Pavilion of UQAM and the Maisonneuve Theatre located in Montreal’s entertainment district. Thousands of intrigued, street spectators watched me as I worked in the Theatre lobby and as conductor Kent Nagano led the world-class musicians of the OSM in concert.
I also had the pleasure of meeting Kent George Nagano who is an American conductor and opera administrator. He has been the music director of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra since 2006 and is general music director of the Hamburg State Opera since 2015 through 2020. Photos are by Koralie Woodward.