This week is Mozart week. Mozart can do no wrong
(This is a quotation from one of our members, during a debate about the misogyny of Cosi!) it’s also the Best of British week. (But further down this post, there’s lots on the gems from the Met!!)
Off to Glyndebourne, with Mozart!
Get in the mood with images of decadent desserts and fabulous gardens… But you don't need to travel. Currently livestreaming from Glyndebourne is Mozart’s early opera (he called it a "Deutsches Singspiel") Die Entführung aus dem Serail (The Abduction from the Seraglio). He was 26 and it was a huge success. A challenge for directors these days. Here’s Glyndebourne’s synopsis of this profoundly odd minimalist plot.
You can watch it from here .
Coming up in the next weeks with Glyndebourne there’s lots more Mozart! Their thoroughly modern Marriage of Figaro – also much praised – is next week’s news for us: streaming free at 5.00pm UK time on Sunday 24 May. (that’s 2am Monday 25th if you’re up late – but it’s available to watch for 7 days.) Yes, we’ll feature that on next week’s blog. And they follow it with their Don Giovanni and guess what?! Cosi! Meanwhile, back in town...
live from Royal Opera House...
No it's not Mozart, but ROH screens their classic production of Verdi's La Traviata – Here’s the trailer. Starring Renée Fleming and Joseph Calleja, this was a hugely successful version of Richard Eyre’s production which actually celebrated its 25th anniversary this year. Thomas Hampson sings Alfredo's ultimately forgiving father.
Check out Fleming’s take on Violetta with her 'Sempre Libre' from the production here.
And the Met too is doing Mozart.
There are two offerings for Mozart fans this week from The Met in New York: his rarely performed Idomeneo (with full use of their famous chorus - below - and a classic Don Giovanni.
Here's your week at the Met. (Dates for Melbourne showing all day thru to the next brekky).
Monday, May 18: Verdi’s Nabucco (2017) Starring Liudmyla Monastyrska, Jamie Barton, Russell Thomas, Plácido Domingo, and Dmitry Belosselskiy, conducted by James Levine..
Tuesday, May 19: Mozart’s Idomeneo (2017) Mozart does historical drama in style – and the Met sings it: listen to the quartet in the last act.
Wednesday, May 20: Wagner’s Lohengrin (1986) Peter Hoffmann in the title role, Eva Marton as Elsa. NYTimes archives show they weren’t impressed, and the Met still hasn't got that swan right.
Thursday, May 21: Verdi’s Un Ballo in Maschera (2012). It's Verdi’s possibly most underrated opera, and in some ways the most politically intriguing, in a brilliant production. What a cast! Sondra Radvanovsky as Leonora; tenor Marcelo Álvarez as the king, (who loves her); wonderful baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky as his most trusted adviser (and Leonora’s husband) Anckarström. Watch it for Hvorostovsky – here’s his act 3 aria.
Friday, May 22: Puccini’s Turandot (2019) A well worn production, but Christine Goerke did a highly plausible performance of the highly implausible fabled princess. James Morris sang Timur. As so often, sadly, Calaf was less impressive, but then he's totally implausible. Good review here from Bachtrack
Saturday, May 23: Mozart’s Don Giovanni (1978) This was Joan Sutherland’s famous performance as Donna Anna, the improbable wronged woman whose erratic behaviour drives the plot. Joan thought she was innocent. Check for yourself - I found her protestation, ‘Non mi dir’ from that performance on Youtube!
Sunday, May 24: Gounod’s Faust (2011) with Jonas Kaufmann in the title role in a bizarre modern setting for the traditional story.) Here's his classic aria - for a few seconds.
Monday, May 25: Massenet’s Manon Transmitted live on April 7, 2012
Phew!!! with the wealth of opera being offered to us, it's almost impossible to summarize - let alone select what you'll watch. Enjoy!