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Giuseppe Verdi

Thursday, July 28, 2016


Norman Lebrecht - Slipped disc

July 20

Placido Domingo gets Mozart in the Jungle role

Norman Lebrecht - Slipped discHe just couldn’t say no, he gushes to the New York Times. Mr. Domingo, who moved to Mexico as a child and maintains strong ties there, said that he was drawn partly by the chance to appear with Mr. García Bernal, a Mexican actor whose career he has followed since the film “Y Tu Mamá También” more than a decade ago, and partly because he was intrigued by a new series that shines a light on the field. So Mr. Domingo, who remains one of the hardest workers in opera, recorded his vocals for the duet, “Là ci darem la mano,” this month at a midnight session at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, right after finishing a performance there in the title role of Verdi’s “Simon Boccanegra.” (The soprano part, which Ms. Bellucci, who is playing a fiery diva known as La Fiamma, lip-synced to, was recorded in San Francisco by the rising star Ana María Martínez.) Could be the series is running out of steam.

Norman Lebrecht - Slipped disc

July 20

Placido Domingo gets Mozart in the Jungle role

He just couldn’t say no, he gushes to the New York Times. Mr. Domingo, who moved to Mexico as a child and maintains strong ties there, said that he was drawn partly by the chance to appear with Mr. García Bernal, a Mexican actor whose career he has followed since the film “Y Tu Mamá También” more than a decade ago, and partly because he was intrigued by a new series that shines a light on the field. So Mr. Domingo, who remains one of the hardest workers in opera, recorded his vocals for the duet, “Là ci darem la mano,” this month at a midnight session at the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, right after finishing a performance there in the title role of Verdi’s “Simon Boccanegra.” (The soprano part, which Ms. Bellucci, who is playing a fiery diva known as La Fiamma, lip-synced to, was recorded in San Francisco by the rising star Ana María Martínez.) Could be the series is running out of steam.




Royal Opera House

July 18

Watch: Finding the light in Verdi’s Il trovatore - 'There is love and there is hope'

‘It’s about love, it’s about hate, it’s about violence, it’s about fear – it’s about everything that is human in a way’, says Director David Bösch of Giuseppe Verdi ’s Il trovatore . 'It’s a very dark and cruel opera. But there is love and there is hope.' Bösch's recent Royal Opera production of Il trovatore was screened live on BP Big Screens around the UK, and was live streamed internationally via YouTube. The performance is available to watch in full for a limited time via the Royal Opera House YouTube channel . The opera begins mid-way through the story of a gypsy, Azucena, who plans to avenge the Luna family's murder of her mother by abducting their youngest son. Years later, Count di Luna aims to win the heart of noble lady Leonora. She however, has other ideas, and is in love with a revolutionary named Manrico, who looks strangely familiar. Conductor Gianandrea Noseda believes that Verdi's music makes the story easier to follow and that elements of the score personify each character: ‘Even if the plot is particularly challenging, the music composed in this opera [ensures] everything makes sense', he says. 'In Manrico, you very much see the revolutionary element and understand immediately what he wants to do'. Tenor Francesco Meli who sang role of Manrico also has high praise for the opera's composer: 'Verdi is not only a great composer of music but a great man of theatre', he says. Soprano Lianna Haroutounian who plays Leonora, agrees the music captures the imagination of the audience: ‘The music is so powerful, so expressive, and so dynamic. This music has everything’. Watch more films like this on the Royal Opera House YouTube channel: Il trovatore runs 1 December 2016-8 February 2017. Tickets go on sale to Friends of Covent Garden on 21 September 2016. General booking opens on 18 October 2016. The production is a co-production with Frankfurt Opera and is staged with generous philanthropic support from the Royal Opera House Endowment Fund.



Royal Opera House

July 15

BBC Proms 2016: Our must-see recommendations

The Royal Albert Hall © David Samuel 2012 Prom 2: Mussorgsky – Boris Godunov (16 July) Boris is back - and conveniently for us, compiling this list in date order means the Royal Opera House Prom comes out on top. With a cast led by bass-baritone Bryn Terfel and conducted by Antonio Pappano , this concert performance of Mussorgsky ’s operatic masterpiece tells the tragic tale of a Russian Tsar plagued by guilt. The semi-staged performance is preceded by a workshop from the BBC Singers , where aspiring performers can join in with some of the opera’s choruses. Prom 5: Beethoven — Missa Solemnis (19 July) Fresh from conducting Verdi ’s epic Il trovatore on the Covent Garden stage, Gianandrea Noseda is at the helm of – if possible – an even larger masterpiece. Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis was composed over four years towards the end of the composer’s life and is considered to be is one of his supreme achievements. With a stellar cast of singers including soprano Camilla Nylund, mezzo-soprano Birgit Remmert, tenor Stuart Skelton, bass Hanno Müller-Brachmann, the Hallé Choir , Manchester Chamber Choir and BBC Philharmonic , the effect is sure to be breathtaking. Proms 10 and 11: Wagner and Tippett (23 July) A full day of Wagner may feel relatively short for those attuned to his lengthy operas – but for newcomers to this composer’s work, 11 July should serve as an introduction. Prom 10 at 11am showcases the 'Ride of the Valkyries' from Die Walküre in a family-friendly performance, alongside other classical staples from the BBC’s Ten Pieces series – music designed to open up the world of classical music to children and young people. The evening’s Prom 11 includes the final scene from Die Walküre, alongside Tippett ’s contemplative oratorio, A Child of Our Time. Prom 14: Rossini – The Barber of Seville (25 July) There’s something of a Rossini focus at this year’s BBC Proms, and who better to celebrate the 200th anniversary of The Barber of Seville than our friends at Glyndebourne ? Danielle de Niese leads the cast as Rosina, a young girl eager to escape the elderly Count Almaviva’s affection, with comic consequences. There’s also a pre-concert talk for those wanting to learn more about the role and politics of hair-styling in 18th- and 19th-century Europe (!) with Alun Withey and historian Kathryn Hughes. Proms 27 and 30: Stravinsky (5 and 7 August) Fans of Stravinsky ’s ballet scores won’t be disappointed with this Proms Season: over the weekend of 5, 6 and 7 August, audiences will be treated to Petrushka (1947 version) , The Firebird , and The Rite of Spring , complete with pre-performance talks. Those looking to collect all the performances of Stravinsky’s works over the 58 day-long festival should also save the date for the Pulcinella Suite on 20 July . Proms at … Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, Shakespeare's Globe (13 August) A suitably Shakespearean recommendation in the 400th anniversary of his death. This performance takes regular Prommers away from the familiar surroundings of the Royal Albert Hall to an altogether smaller performance space: the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse at Shakespeare's Globe . Expect English Baroque music in spades, with music by Purcell , Blow , Locke and Draghi , as well as incidental music for Shakespeare’s The Tempest . Prom 41: The Hallé – Mahler’s Das Lied von der Erde (16 August) Tenor Gregory Kunde stars alongside mezzo-soprano Alice Coote and the Hallé in Mahler ’s synthesis of song and symphony, Das Lied von der Erde, conducted by Mark Elder . Continuing the Season’s focus on cello music, (kicking off on the First Night with a digital light projection from Sol Gabetta), Leonard Elschenbroich will perform a London premiere: Colin Matthews’s Berceuse for Dresden, which takes inspiration from the eight bells of the Dresden church at which it was premiered. Prom 45: Janáček — The Makropulos Affair (19 August) A dream team of singers assemble for a concert performance of Janáček ’s tragic satire, The Makropulos Affair, performed under the baton of Czech conductor Jiří Běhlohlávek . Finnish soprano Karita Mattila — acclaimed for her portrayal of the opera’s heroine at New York’s Metropolitan Opera — leads the cast. Prom 59: (More) Beethoven (29 August) A rare treat to hear music from Beethoven’s only opera, Fidelio . Despite his prolific musical output, the composer appeared to struggle with the overture, eventually writing four versions. This version (Leonore No. 2) is the first attempt and is thought to have been composed for the 1805 premiere – but nowadays the final version, Leonore No. 1, much lighter in style and with fresh musical material, is often heard in performance. This Prom also features András Schiff playing the Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat major, 'Emperor', and the Symphony No. 7, performed by the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra and conducted by Herbert Blomstedt . Prom 67: Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra and Gustavo Dudamel (4 September) The conductor affectionately dubbed ‘The Dude’ is back, conducting the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra in their first Proms appearance since 2011. In this Olympic year, the Proms is celebrating South American music and musicians with a premiere of Venezuelan composer Paul Desenne ’s Hipnosis mariposa, alongside Villa-Lobos ’s effervescent orchestral tribute to J. S. Bach, Bachianas Brasileiras No 2. For ballet fans, the performance ends with two dizzying works by Ravel : La Valse , originally conceived as a ballet but now frequently heard as a concert work, and the Suite No. 2 from Daphnis and Chloe . Prom 75: The Last Night of the Proms (10 September) There’s much more to the Last Night than tub-thumping Elgar and flag-waving pomp (although if that’s your cup of tea, you won’t be disappointed). Peruvian tenor Juan Diego Flórez is the star soloist for a diverse evening of music, including 'Una furtiva lagrima’ from Donizetti’s L'elisir d'amore , 'Ah ! mes amis' from La fille du regiment , as well as a generous helping of lush English song. Jette Parker Young Artist Lauren Fagan is also set to perform in a jewel in the evening’s programme, Vaughan Williams ’ Serenade to Music, scored for 16 soloists, alongside the BBC Singers and BBC Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Sakari Oramo. Don your black tie and get queuing! What are you most looking forward to seeing at this year’s BBC Proms? Let us know via the comments below. Tickets for the BBC Proms 2016 can be purchased from the Royal Albert Hall website . All Proms will be broadcast on BBC Radio 3 , with a selection available to watch on BBC Four .

Royal Opera House

July 15

Your Reaction: Verdi's Il trovatore on BP Big Screens and YouTube

Željko Lučić as Count di Luna in Il trovatore, The Royal Opera © 2016 ROH. Photograph by Clive Barda #ROHtrovatore WOW! That Azucena is proper scary! Evil in her eyes as she emerged from her caravan. Watching this via YouTube in Minehead. — Chris Grizzell (@ExmoorDrifter) July 14, 2016 Comfy on my sofa in Broughty Ferry, watching on YouTube. Great singing, not so sure about the weird flapping birds. #ROHTrovatore — Liz Turner (@chirpy325) July 14, 2016 Love #rohtrovatore - gypsies, curses, burning babies, love rivals, nuns. What more can you ask for? — Matt W (@Clavdivs1) July 14, 2016 A photo posted by Aberdeen Bake Club (@aberdeenbakeclub) on Jul 14, 2016 at 11:06am PDT @TheRoyalOpera At home watching on YouTube. Great singing, not so sure about production #ROHTrovatore — Peter Cullen (@PierreCullen5) 14 July 2016 Wow, Ekaterina Semenchuk's Azucena is impressive. Totally love her singing and acting! #ROHTrovatore — Isa Bella (@operafangirl) July 14, 2016 Holy chest voice, Batman!!! #ROHTrovatore #Semenchuk — Stuart Melling (@stu_melling) July 14, 2016 A photo posted by María (@esca_lorolo) on Jul 14, 2016 at 11:02am PDT BTW: what I learned at @RoyalOperaHouse . 1) Despite seeming absurd nonsense, opera can engender real tears. 2) People actually shout 'bravo' — Ant Heald (@AntHeald) July 14, 2016 Superb Leonora! @liannahar - just fantastic tonight! #ROHTrovatore — AngWish (@angelaw1) July 14, 2016 @TheRoyalOpera @RoyalOperaHouse #ROHtrovatore absolutely amazing! Incredible set & production! Excellent evening out! Would highly recommend — Adam West (@adamwest333) 14 July 2016 A photo posted by Maz (@_m_a_z_) on Jul 14, 2016 at 12:22pm PDT What did you think of Il trovatore live on BP Big Screens and YouTube? Let us know via the comments below. Il trovatore runs until July. Tickets are still available . The live stream of Il trovatore is part of BP Big Screens 2016 and is available for 30 days. F ind a BP Big Screen near you .

Giuseppe Verdi
(1813 – 1901)

Giuseppe Verdi (10 October 1813 - 27 January 1901) was an Italian Romantic composer, mainly of opera. He was one of the most influential composers of the 19th century. His works are frequently performed in opera houses throughout the world and, transcending the boundaries of the genre, some of his themes have long since taken root in popular culture - such as "La donna è mobile" from Rigoletto, "Va, pensiero" (The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves) from Nabucco, "Libiamo ne' lieti calici" (The Drinking Song) from La traviata and the "Grand March" from Aida. Although his work was sometimes criticized for using a generally diatonic rather than a chromatic musical idiom and having a tendency toward melodrama, Verdi’s masterworks dominate the standard repertoire a century and a half after their composition.



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