Whenever opera-lovers are canvassed about what neglected operas they hunger to see revived, the resulting lists inevitably feature a goodly number of grand operas, those once wildly popular monstrosities–particularly by Meyerbeer–written primarily for Paris in the mid-19th century. Yet despite the enthusiasm of their advocates, these works have had a hard time regaining a place in the repertoire in the 21st century. Although a recent revival of Auber’s La Muette de Portici was well received at the Opéra-Comique in Paris, Covent Garden’s splashy new Robert le Diable by Meyerbeer flopped and the Met has never revived its 2003 production of Halévy’s La Juive. Read more »
Monteverdi’s L’incoronazione di Poppea (The Coronation of Poppea) is opera on the grand scale with mellifluous arias and breathtaking duets that tell a tale of ancient Roman political machinations, adultery, and murder in which there is no true protagonist. This stunningly expressive music is performed by an all-star cast. Soprano Miah Persson, praised by The New York Times for her “sumptuous sound and elegant lyricism,” is joined by singers who have all won worldwide critical acclaim for their mastery of this beautiful repertoire. The Guardian wrote that “there are few performers better-versed in the music of Claudio Monteverdi than Rinaldo Alessandrini and the ensemble he founded 30 years ago, Concerto Italiano.” Alessandrini and company anchor a performance that promises to be one of the season’s most thrilling nights of opera.
Not only is it Rossini’s 53rd birthday but also an opportunity to celebrate the art of the intervallic leap. YouTube yourselves into frenzy, cher public! Read more »
Oh, Rossini, Rossini! You mad, adorable fool! What power could you find in the theaters of Paris to keep you from Neapolitan arms? If you are fond of Rossini (or any other major composer), you will want to collect the whole set. Each piece of the jigsaw adds detail to the picture, but there are switchbacks and double-exposures that can be tricky, as the busy and hugely successful young composer recycled or redeveloped old, ill-received or, in a new location, unfamiliar material.
From the Vienna State Opera in January 1988, the first part of the Rossini opera you, cher public, chose: Il viaggio a Reims. Among the all-star cast in this episode of Unnatural Acts of Opera:
The cher public have spoken, and their chosen Rossini oeuvre, to be featured on the next Unnatural Acts of Opera, is…
The solution to the “D’amor al dolce impero” quiz … Maria Callas Renata Scotto Katia Ricciarrelli Christina Deutekom Adelaide Negri Renee Fleming Jennifer Larmore Christine Weidinger Nelly Miricioiu Maja Tabatadze Cecilia Gasdia Montserrat Caballe
Faust (Gounod) Acts 4 and 5 Since our this podcast completes our series of Faust episodes, La Cieca needs to decide which work should be featured next on “Unnatural Acts of Opera.” Your doyenne has narrowed the selection down to five works of maestro Rossini, and now it’s up to you, cher public, to tell her which of these five you want to hear.