Click here to Log in / Become a member  
Classical News
There’s a whole lot going on... Classical Source Recommends (2) – Opera this time...

I thought I’d look at rare and new opera this month. October heralded such intriguing fare as Rossi’s Orpheus in a witty and delectable candlelit production at Shakespeare’s Globe’s exquisite Sam Wanamaker Theatre (to November 15), while Chelsea Opera Group turned (as if via a prism) to Shakespeare for Wagner’s second operatic attempt: Das Liebesverbot loosely based on Measure for Measure. Out of the capital, Welsh National Opera dusted down two rather off-the-beaten track examples from their respective composers: Bellini’s I Puritani and Handel’s Orlando (touring during November). Let alone Wexford’s annual trio of rarities…

November starts with that other powerhouse of operatic byways, the Guildhall School of Music, with four performances of Wolf-Ferrari’s Le donne curiose (Silk Street Theatre until November 9) while the Royal Opera House brings a brand new work, Georg Friedrich Haas’s cradle-to-grave commission Morgen und Abend, with a libretto by Norwegian Jon Fosse (November 13- 28 November; five performances). Down in the ROH’s Linbury Studio (on the eve of its closure for two-years of rebuilding improvements) there are two operatic ventures of note: Will Todd’s Alice in Wonderland – Opera Holland Park’s summer success over the last couple of years finding an indoor home (November 5-7) before junk opera exponents the Tiger Lillies (you remember Shockheaded Peter?) bring its take on Wedekind’s Lulu – A Murder Ballad (Nov 23-28).

And it’s not just staged opera where you can find rarities. At the Barbican Hall there are two goodies in store: for Handelians amongst, Il Pomo Doro brings Tamerlano on the 10th) before Opera Rara teams up again with the BBC Symphony Orchestra for Leoncavallo’s Zazà on the 27th. For those that thought Cav and Pag’s respective composers were just one-horse wonders, then Wexford’s Mascagni offering, Guglielmo Ratcliff, and this Zazà should widen perspectives. And for Cav and Pag, Tony Pappano and the Royal Opera will soon oblige (in updated settings, to the 1980s, by Damiano Michieletto). Given that it’s nearly eight years since Richard Jones’s ENO productions, and many more years since being on Covent Garden’s stage, you might even argue that these two verismo classics are now something of a rarity (December-January).

And the rare or brand new opera doesn’t stop in 2016. Don’t miss Gerald Barry’s The Importance of Being Earnest at the Barbican (March 29-April 3) then New York, while English Touring Opera revives Donizetti’s Pia de’Tolomei between March and June. Earlier, Music Theatre Wales and Scottish Opera combine for the world première of Stuart MacRae’s new opera with Louise Welsh, The Devil Inside (based on Robert Louis Stevenson’s short story The Bottle Imp). Catch it north-of-the-border on Jan 23 & 29 January (Glasgow and Edinburgh respectively) and then touring from February to April. One welcome innovation is the publishing of the libretto online in advance. Then, the ever-enterprising Music Theatre Wales will stage Peter Eötvös’s The Golden Dragon, opening at the 2016 Buxton Festival.

Nick Breckenfield
The Classical Source
November 2015


Latest Concert & Opera Reviews

about this concert Kings of Broadway – Jerry Herman, Stephen Sondheim and Jule Styne [Palace Theatre, London]
about this concert London Philharmonic Orchestra/Susanna Mälkki – From the Apocalypse & Sibelius 1 – Beatrice Rana plays Prokofiev
about this concert Leoncavallo’s Zazà – BBC Symphony Orchestra & Opera Rara at Barbican Hall – Ermonela Jaho, Riccardo Massi, Stephen Gaertner; conducted by Maurizio Benini
about this concert Philharmonia Orchestra/Esa-Pekka Salonen – Grieg – Music for Peer Gynt and Lang Lang plays the Piano Concerto
about this concert London Philharmonic Orchestra/Andrés Orozco-Estrada – Mahler 1 – Johannes Moser plays Dvořák’s Cello Concerto

| more |

Latest CD & DVD Reviews

about this cd/dvd JoAnn Falletta conducts Florent Schmitt – Antony and Cleopatra & The Haunted Palace [Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra; Naxos]
about this cd/dvd Paavo Järvi conducts Rachmaninov – Symphony No.3, Symphonic Dances, The Rock, Caprice bohémien, Vocalise [Orchestre de Paris; Erato]
about this cd/dvd Edvard Grieg – Stimmungen & Slåtter – played by John McCabe [Somm]
about this cd/dvd The Genius of Film Music: Hollywood Blockbusters 1960s-1980s – Cleopatra, The Godfather, Taras Bulba, Psycho, Mutiny on the Bounty, Star Trek, Once upon a time in America, Lawrence of Arabia – London Philharmonic Orchestra/John Mauceri [LPO own label]
about this cd/dvd Ronald Brautigam plays Mozart Piano Concertos K246, K413, K415 [Die Kölner Akademie/Michael Alexander Willens; BIS]

| more |

Latest Features

about this feature Metropolitan Opera Live HD Broadcasts 2015-16: Alban Berg's Lulu – Marlis Petersen, Susan Graham, Johan Reuter; directed by William Kentridge; conducted by Lothar Koenigs [Showing on Saturday November 21]
about this feature Metropolitan Opera Live HD Broadcasts 2015-16: Wagner’s Tannhäuser – Johan Botha, Eva-Maria Westbroek, Peter Mattei & Michelle DeYoung; conducted by James Levine [Showing on Saturday October 31]
about this feature Feature Review: George Enescu International Festival [September 2015]
about this feature Feature Review: A Gesture of Friendship – The Tenth Malcolm Arnold Festival [17 & 18 October 2015]
about this feature Metropolitan Opera Live HD Broadcasts 2015-16: Verdi’s Otello – Aleksandrs Antonenko, Sonya Yoncheva & Željko Lučić, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin [Showing on Saturday October 17]

| more |

Why Donate?    
The Classical Source needs reviewers