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Showing posts from November, 2011

Verdi - La Forza del Destino

ONP Bastille, Tuesday November 29 2011

Conductor: Philippe Jordan. Production: Jean-Claude Auvray. Sets: Alain Chambon. Costumes; Maria-Chiara Donato. Lighting: Laurent Castaingt. Il Marchese di Calatrava: Mario Luperi. Donna Leonora: Violeta Urmana. Don Carlo di Vargas: Vladimir Stoyanov. Don Alvaro: Marcelo Alvarez. Preziosilla: Nadia Krasteva. Padre Guardiano: Kwangchul Youn. Fra Melitone: Nicola Alaimo. Orchestra and Chorus of the Opéra National De Paris.

I don’t always read the reviews before going along to the opera, but this time I did and found them ominously full of faint praise. “Inoffensive” production (in these uncertain times in Paris, that’s seen as a good thing). “Well-made costumes… secondary roles well sung…” In the event, the production wasn’t so much inoffensive as inexistent; and while Alvarez was off sick on the first night, he was there yesterday, more of which later.

I suppose quoting yourself isn’t done, a good enough reason to do it. You may remember that, afte…

Enescu - Œdipe

La Monnaie, Brussels, Sunday November 6 2011
Conductor: Leo Hussain. Production: Alex Ollé (La Fura dels Baus), Valentina Carrasco. Sets: Alfons Flores. Costumes: Lluc Castells. Lighting: Peter Van Praet. Œdipe: Dietrich Henschel. Tirésias: Jan-Hendrik Rootering. Créon: Robert Bork. Le Berger: John Graham-Hall. Le Grand-Prêtre: Jean Teitgen. Phorbas: Henk Neven. Le Veilleur: Frédéric Caton. Thésée: Nabil Suliman. Laios: Yves Saelens. Jocaste: Natascha Petrinsky. La Sphinge: Marie-Nicole Lemieux. Antigone: Ilse Eerens. Mérope: Catherine Keen. Une femme thébaine: Kinga Borowska. Orchestra and Chorus of La Monnaie.

Œdipe is one of the supreme operatic masterpieces of all time, one of the pinnacles of 20th century opera, of the kind that, alongside Pelléas, Wozzeck, Lulu or Die Soldaten, can be ticked off on the fingers of our hands.” Harry Halbreich.

So he’s a fan. Also in the programme notes for this new Brussels production, as well as in La Monnaie’s subscriber magazine, the conductor…