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Culture Forum

Culture Forum

  1. 13 Jan '13 20:31
    Mentioned in the Meyerbeer thread that Covent Garden had recently staged Robert le Diable for the first time since the nineteenth century.

    What rare opera would you most like to see revived?
  2. 15 Jan '13 03:51
    Originally posted by Teinosuke
    Mentioned in the Meyerbeer thread that Covent Garden had recently staged Robert le Diable for the first time since the nineteenth century.

    What rare opera would you most like to see revived?
    Hector Berlioz' Les Troyens! I saw our local students do Robert Le Diable with piano and pared down costumes back in 1986. I'd love to see Oberon staged around here for the first time!
  3. Standard member hakima
    Illumination
    15 Jan '13 04:01
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    Hector Berlioz' Les Troyens! I saw our local students do Robert Le Diable with piano and pared down costumes back in 1986. I'd love to see Oberon staged around here for the first time!
    The Met just did Les Troyens and streamed it in HD, live in theatres about two weeks ago. Sadly, I missed it, but a friend of mine raves about it. It might be recorded.
  4. 15 Jan '13 04:33
    Originally posted by hakima
    The Met just did Les Troyens and streamed it in HD, live in theatres about two weeks ago. Sadly, I missed it, but a friend of mine raves about it. It might be recorded.
    I saw that it was coming and indeed also forgot! I feel so foolish especially since I posted an article about why arias fall flat at the multiplex. I also dream and drool about some day finally seeing Rossini's William Tell staged! I also would love to see Adriana Lecovreur and other Cilea works.
  5. 15 Jan '13 13:32 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    Hector Berlioz' Les Troyens! I saw our local students do Robert Le Diable with piano and pared down costumes back in 1986. I'd love to see Oberon staged around here for the first time!
    Les Troyens was staged at Covent Garden last summer. Bryan Hymel was a marvellous Aeneas. I don't think I'd quite registered how rare it was - it is given from time to time in Europe. But this was its first absolutely uncut rendering at the Royal Opera House.

    If we're talking canonical operas that just don't get done much, I'd love to see Borodin's Prince Igor, which is hardly even given outside Russia. And indeed, even Weber's Der Freischutz, which I often praise, is rarely staged in Britain (I've only seen it in concert). As mentioned on the other thread, a new production of Meyerbeer's Les Huguenots would be great - a much better work than Robert! - though again, that does occasionally turn up on the continent.

    If we're talking operas that are not part of the standard canon of all, one that I'd particularly like to see revived are Respighi's La Fiamma (of interest to me as a film scholar, since it shares a plot with the classic Carl Dreyer film Day of Wrath). Two other even more obscure ones are Berwald's Estrella de Soria (one of the few Swedish language-operas, with a memorable overture) and Jan van Gilse's Thijl (one of the very few Dutch-language operas, with some delicate funeral music / "Treuermuziek" ).
  6. 16 Jan '13 03:27
    Originally posted by Teinosuke
    Les Troyens was staged at Covent Garden last summer. Bryan Hymel was a marvellous Aeneas. I don't think I'd quite registered how rare it was - it is given from time to time in Europe. But this was its first absolutely uncut rendering at the Royal Opera House.

    If we're talking canonical operas that just don't get done much, I'd love to see Borodin's Prin ...[text shortened]... few Dutch-language operas, with some delicate funeral music / "Treuermuziek" ).
    Indeed you are right. Seldom performed does not mean obscure at all. Underperformed makes the few performances must see events. I'd love to see Mozart's unfinished opera Zaide since that's my mother's name. http://top40-charts.com/news.php?nid=63406

    Borodin is indeed totally neglected in the west. I also drool at the thought of Der Freischutz finally getting a local staging. How about a Schubert opera like Fierrabras?

    Respighi's La Fiamma would be a real treat! I had never heard of Berwald until now, but I'd love to hear this Estrella de Soria! Jan van Gilse's work sounds intriguing indeed!
  7. 16 Jan '13 16:55
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    I had never heard of Berwald until now, but I'd love to hear this Estrella de Soria!
    A friend of mine is a great lover of classical music, but his preference is much more for instrumental music rather than opera. Years ago I remarked to him that while Norway, Denmark and Finland could each boast one internationally acclaimed composer in Grieg, Nielsen and Sibelius, there was no comparable figure in Sweden. He pointed to Berwald, whose music, he said, he personally preferred to Grieg's. Because of my recent visit to Stockholm to see Un Ballo in Maschera, I started wondering if there was any Swedish-language opera of note, and Berwald's name came to mind again. I asked my friend for some more information about his work, and he wrote to me as follows:

    "I became obsessed by the music of this Swedish composer quite early on: a review of a 1968 re-release on a single budget-price LP of recordings of two of his symphonies (that had previously been on two different discs, each coupled with an early Schubert work in the same genre) made them sound worth a listen. I gave them a listen, and instantly fell in love with the Sinfonie Singuliere. I snapped up a copy of the reissue and have ever since delighted in playing the slow movement of the Singuliere to people who (a) cannot imagine who the composer might be, and (b) almost invariably fall in love with it too!

    Back in the 60s and 70s recordings of his works were very rare; and live performances in London all but non-existent (alas, that is still so). With the arrival of the CD format, the record situation improved dramatically, and I now have multiple alternative versions of the symphonies, and at least two or three performances each of all his concertos, tone poems and important chamber music pieces."
  8. 17 Jan '13 01:30
    Originally posted by Teinosuke
    A friend of mine is a great lover of classical music, but his preference is much more for instrumental music rather than opera. Years ago I remarked to him that while Norway, Denmark and Finland could each boast one internationally acclaimed composer in Grieg, Nielsen and Sibelius, there was no comparable figure in Sweden. He pointed to Berwald, whose musi ...[text shortened]... hree performances each of all his concertos, tone poems and important chamber music pieces."
    Now I can't wait to partake of Berwald's work. Hopefully our local library will have a copy or one is available at our local record store. BTW, I have never cared fro Grieg either! Nielsen and Sibelius are way better! Singuliere sounds extremely intriguing!
  9. 17 Jan '13 12:49
    Originally posted by scacchipazzo
    Now I can't wait to partake of Berwald's work. Hopefully our local library will have a copy or one is available at our local record store. BTW, I have never cared fro Grieg either! Nielsen and Sibelius are way better! Singuliere sounds extremely intriguing!
    If your library doesn't stretch to Berwald, you'll find a few examples of his work (including the Singuliere) on YouTube - not the ideal format for musical appreciation, of course, but it will give you a taste!
  10. 18 Jan '13 02:43
    Originally posted by Teinosuke
    If your library doesn't stretch to Berwald, you'll find a few examples of his work (including the Singuliere) on YouTube - not the ideal format for musical appreciation, of course, but it will give you a taste!
    Indeed I try resorting to youtube as a last resort. Better than nothing, however! There are better examples now that everything is going HD!