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Showing posts from August, 2016

Leoncavallo - Pagliacci

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Apollo(n) Theatre, Ermoupoli, Syros, Friday July 15 2016

Conductor: Giovanni Pacor. Production: Detlef Soelter. Canio: Piero Giuliacci. Nedda: Eilana Lappalainen. Tonio: Massimiliano Fichera. Beppe: Ioannis Kavouras. Silvio: Joseph Lim. Pan-European Philharmonia. Greek Opera Studio. Ile de France children’s chorus.

In the middle of the 19th century, Ermoupoli, capital of Syros in the Cyclades, was a thriving shipbuilding and trading town and a more important port than Piraeus, rich enough to build a small Italian-style, horseshoe-shaped opera house. The Apollo (sometimes Apollon) Theatre was renovated at the turn of the present century, and I found myself invited to Syros for my birthday and to Pagliacci there the next day.

It was a far better experience than anyone might have feared, a more-than-just-creditable performance, and quite a lot of fun. It was also an appreciable chance to get some idea of what opera in small and relatively remote houses was like back then. The intimacy wit…