For the many Parterrians who will this week participate in America’s heaviest period of travel which annually precedes the Thanksgiving holiday, I offer a bit of operatic turkey, P.D.Q. Bach’s half-act opera The Stoned Guest, as an aural amuse-bouche.
This 1970 broadcast from the gymnasium of the University of Southern North Dakota at Hoople is augmented by commentary from Milton Host, an intermission edition of Opera Whiz, and as a bonus: two madrigals from The Triumphs of Thusnelda: “The Queen to me a royal pain doth give” and “My bonnie lass she smelleth.”
This a rare opportunity to sample the operatic oeuvre of the 21st of Johan Sebastian Bach’s 20 children, of which only The Stoned Guest, Hansel and Gretel and Ted and Alice and The Abduction of Figaro are known to exist, as well as the dramatic cantata Oedipus Tex.
As-yet undiscovered operas include The Barren Gypsy, The Civilian Barber, Madame Butterbrickle, The Magic Fruit, Rosenkavalier and Guildenstern, and La clemenza di Genghis Khan.
This upload was requested by and is dedicated to Parterre’s dear Camile, who seems to have gone missing since the transfer to the Disqus platform. Cami, if you are out there, please give us a shout! You warmth and generosity, encyclopedic knowledge, even-temper, style, and self-effacing sense of humor made you the unofficial Den Mother of Parterre, and you presence is greatly missed. I know I speak for many when I wish you all the best, and hope that you will find a way to rejoin us soon.