Headshot of La Cieca

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  • Rackon: Thank you for the detailed report! This is one production I would dearly love to see, especially with... 9:10 AM

Head start

A preview of sorts of next weekend’s parterre gathering right this minute as BBC Radio 3 broadcasts Les Vêpres Siciliennes.

13 comments

  • manou says:

    It will also be on iPlayer for one week afterwards.

  • Jamie01 says:

    It appears I missed the deadline for discounted tickets, but I’m willing to pay retail for the chance to meet and greet La Cieca and the parterrati.

  • uwsinnyc says:

    It’s an exciting performance-- who are the singers, could someone advise?

  • Clita del Toro says:

    Dimi is certainly a “puffed up” Rigoletto.

  • Quanto Painy Fakor says:

    Vendetta duet devoid of beauty and triplets. Lot’s of shouting earlier in the act.

  • Porgy Amor says:

    Hélène’s dead brother’s head looks like a bust of Wilhelm Furtwängler in that photo.

  • papopera says:

    Will light refreshments be served Mrs Bucket?

  • Regina delle fate says:

    Maybe it’s deliberate and Herheim discovered that Fürtwängler was excoriated by critics for his conducting of the ballet music from Les Vêpres Siciliennes! :)

    • grimoaldo says:

      Ah yes, I think Porgy and Regina have hit on something here.
      I was utterly baffled when watching the videos of this production of Sicilian Vespers, one of my favourite operas, or indeed favourite anythings, because the timeless drama of “freedom fighters” risking their lives to try to win self-determination for their people vs a colonial government that regards them as “terrorists” had been replaced by, ummm, what? A replica of the Paris Opera House and the chorus of fairies (mute) from Iolanthe, that is all I saw. Kind parterrians have attempted to explain to me that the production is a metaphor for the relationship between the Artist and the Public, and a meditation on creativity being stifled by compulsory ballets.
      Now Wilhelm Furtwängler wrote a letter in 1933 to Joseph Goebbels protesting the Nazi anti-Semitism, saying that he would happily fight “artists who … seek to succeed in kitsch, sterile virtuosity and the like” but such people were not only Jews.
      So I think the use of a likeness of Furtwängler’s face for the severed head of Hélène’s dead brother, which she carries around the stage of the Paris Opera House in this version, surrounded by quaintly costumed peasants,must be deeply meaningful, he is emblematic of the struggle against sterile virtuosity which the boorish audience of Jockey Club members perpetuate by enforcing compulsory ballets.
      I guess you just have to think about these kind of shows deeply enough, then they make sense.