Teatre de l’Opera de Barcelona Liceu

La Gata Perduda is the opera through which El Raval enters the Liceu, and with which the Liceu has had the opportunity to open up, get to know, and learn from a neighborhood of which it is a part and warmly welcomes. This initiative involves the participation of the neighbors of the most eclectic community in Barcelona: over 40 nationalities in 1.1 km² and where the highest density of associationism in the European Union is found. Around 1,000 individuals and entities have participated (directly or indirectly) in this endeavor.

In this regard, to seek out all these partnerships among the different actors in the neighborhood, since September 2018, the coordinating team of OPERA PRIMA has been in constant dialogue with the Ciutat Vella District and with the Tot Raval Foundation. This opened up a path of exploration of the terrain, raising awareness about the neighborhood, explaining the project, engaging in community dialogue, and seeking collaborators. Over these four years of collective work, the mission to weave a community network and contribute to the emergence of synergies has been solidified. One of the key points in this process has been the search for individuals or groups who, despite not being professionally involved in the cultural world, have been part of the different aspects of creating an opera such as musical composition and dramaturgy, performance, and the construction of technical and stage elements and project communication. An artistic dialogue that has been enriching for both sides - artistic and community - and aims to create a transformative experience for all involved.

This new project has also included an artistic team that, together with the entire neighborhood, has created a new opera, offering them the opportunity to be part of an innovative program in our country. La Gata Perduda features a libretto written by playwright Victoria Szpunberg based on extensive bibliographic research about the neighborhood and twenty interviews conducted with the residents of El Raval, a key source of inspiration for the writing of this fiction. The plot of the work, in Szpunberg's words, "revolves around an unexpected event that occurs in one of the most famous streets of El Raval, where a fantastical plot unfolds involving the entire neighborhood."

The storyline features epic, surrealistic, and tragicomic elements, combining strong emotions with fantasy and action. According to the playwright herself, "the text incorporates dramaturgical resources that contemporary theater sometimes does not consider, but that are more characteristic of the operatic genre."

The stage floor of the opera is an artistic creation resulting from a community effort between the artists Nemo, JLoca, Kenor, Morcky, Musa, and Eledu, with the collaboration of the cooperative Impulsem, curated by Antoine Careil from Street Art Barcelona / Arnau Gallery.

La Gata Perdida presents a traditional tension in the world of opera between the high and the low, between power and the people. Power, symbolized by an ambitious and ostentatious Magnate, seeks to bring El Raval under its control, an operatic Raval formed by a colossal heart of neighborhood residents. Three extravagant characters with a comic touch serve as the right hand of this capricious power. Together, they attempt to tame the neighborhood and turn it into a global museum, urbanistically transforming it to ultimately deurbanize it, that is, to strip it of the urban life that resides within. El Raval, spurred on by the character of the Magnate's secretary, a neighborhood resident who works for power, tries to resist and confront the interference of the powerful. Victoria Szpunberg's original libretto depicts a globalized world where the consequences of a system governed by economic profit clearly and directly impact the population, neighborhoods, and the lives of its citizens.