Sadly, we rarely get Weber operas in this country, but Freischütz is still regularly done in Europe. After its composer died at 39, there was enough interest in Freischütz that the Paris Opéra longed to produce it, but the spoken dialogue proved a stumbling block. So Berlioz, a Weber fan, put together sung recitatives and then added his own orchestration of Aufforderung zum Tanz (a piano piece by the late composer) to the work for the ballet required by the Opéra.
Those who’d like to compare this French take with the original can listen to Jonas Kaufmann’s one-and-only Max from the 2004 Edinburgh Festival partnered by Hillevi Martinpelto and John Relyea conducted by Charles Mackerras here.
Trove Thursday has also offered Euryanthe with Anne Schwanewilms and Lauren Flanigan in a performance from the Glyndebourne Festival featuring a period-instrument orchestra conducted by Mark Elder, as well as Oberon in Italian (its premiere was at Covent Garden in English) led by Vittorio Gui with the glorious Rezia of Anita Cerquetti.
I’ll take this opportunity repeat my request to impresarios/record producers worldwide that they should produce Oberon with Lise Davidsen and Michael Spyres!
Weber: Le Franc-tireur (French Version by Berlioz of Der Freischütz)
Paris, Salle Pleyel
16 February 2002
Agathe: Michaela Kaune
Annette: Annick Massis
Max: Endrik Wottrich
Gaspard: José van Dam
Ottokar/Kilian: Marc Barrard
Un ermite: Carsten Stabell
Kouno: Jean-Philippe Courtis
Samiel: Jean-Claude Drouot
Chœur de l’Orchestre de Paris
Orchestre de Paris
Conductor: Christoph Eschenbach
Franc-tireur can be downloaded by clicking on the icon of a square with an arrow pointing downward on the audio player above and the resulting mp3 files will appear in your download directory.
The archive which lists all Trove Thursday offerings in alphabetical order by composer was up-to-dated recently.