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He studies and enriches the work's language inserting dramatic substance and striving for a melodic conception that certainly recalls that of his "maestro" Monteverdi yet also steps beyond it. Ercole amante DNO, Commissioned to celebrate the marriage of the Sun King, Louis XIV, and Marie Therese of Spain, the original production of Cavalli's Ercole Amante took two years to complete and, at the time, was the grandest show ever performed in Europe.

DNO's contemporary, hilarious and surreal production, directed by David Alden, is a triumph of opera buffa, a riot of decoration and symbolism complemented by Constance Hoffman's exceptional costumes. La virtu de' strali d'Amore was the first of ten operas Cavalli wrote with librettist Giovanni Faustini.

Set in Cyprus, the plot involves enchanted and pastoral elements, love and its thwarting, the counterpointing of Man and God, sorcery, revelation and ultimate resolution, all accomplished in a brilliant series of scenes.

A follower of Monteverdi, Cavalli reveals the influence of the older man but also his own pronounced independence. Fabio Biondi and Europa Galante have become one of the most admired partnerships in the history of baroque music performance. David et Jonathas Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, The opera has been in the repertoire of Les Arts Florissants since and was first presented in a stage production by William Christie at the Aix-en-Provence Festival This release is a special event for all Baroque music lovers.

Written a year after the death of Lully, this lyric tragedy allows Charpentier to develop beyond the religious dimension, a story of male friendship and forbidden love between David and Jonathas. An excellent cast gathered around William Christie and Les Arts Florissants brings young singers to the title roles: The role of Jonathas is given to a woman: The staging by Andreas Homoki Director of the Zurich Opera since summer focuses on the psychological aspect of this forbidden love story, giving a moving reading of the drama.

Alice in Wonderland Bavarian State Opera, Yet the musical house she constructs with the building blocks of the past and the present is definitely her own house, which she has designed and which self-assuredly proclaims her unmistakable individuality and style. It is a thoroughly modern house that welcomes everyone who loves music.

Unsuk Chin, born in Seoul, Korea, in , had always been fascinated by Lewis Carroll's fairy tale for children and adults. Director Achim Freyer, whose productions have been setting standards for decades, sees Chin's opera as a collection of "dream sequences," for which he has created imaginary spaces: Arlesiana L' Fondazione Pergolesi Spontini, Il Matrimonio segreto was first staged in Vienna on 7th February and was also one of the greatest successes in the history of the eighteenth-century opera.

It is universally recognized as Cimarosa's masterpiece and the only one of his operas to have survived in the regular repertoire to this day.

Matrimonio segreto Il Schwetzingen Festival, Il matrimonio segreto is Cimarosa's most famous opera buffa and it is one of the few comic operas to have maintained its place in the repertoire until today. At its first performance in , Austrian emperor Leopold II is reputed to have liked this masterpiece so much that he ordered the musicians to play it again from the beginning!

Michael Hampe's elegant, colourful production had already won international acclaim when staged in Paris, Stockholm and London - where it won the Olivier Award for Best Opera Production.

His stage direction is sensitive to the music's flow and brings a welcome clarity to the many twists and deceptions in the plot. This recording comes live from the exquisite palace rococo theatre at the Schwetzingen Festival in The Drottningholm Court Theatre Orchestra, an outstanding orchestra for early music, is specialized in music of the 17th and 18th century - their authentic interpretation sounds extremely fresh and colourful, and the playing is always full of energy and contrasts.

Jackie O Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Jackie O develops around the life of Jacqueline Kennedy; her image, following her husband's assassination, of "tragic princess", and the following events, which captured the attention of the world's media.

American composer Michael Daugherty has written a very modern work, in-between opera and jazz, inspired by American musical and the popular culture of the late s.

Jackie's arias Egyptian Time, Jackie"s Credo and All his bright light possess a lyrical, melancholic and exotic allure; the ones sung by Onassis - the conceited, coarse, self-made man - have, instead,echoes of Las Vegas: Maria Callas, who in the '60s was beginning to lose her voice, retraces her life with the songs Addio delPassato and Flame Duet.

Liz Taylor is engaged in a blues-like riff that recalls a Cat on the hot tin roof atmosphere; whereas Princess Grace Kelly trills in Doris Day fashion.

Andy Warhol's aria conforms to his art: In the finale dramatic climax, in Jackie's Song, Jackie duets with her dead husband's voice. Damiano Michieletto's perfect direction is lively and full of colours, and the resemblance of the singers to real characters is impressive. A great tribute to the Pelleas et Melisande Aalto-Musiktheater Essen, Music of introverted tenderness and a libretto that hints at much and offers few answers - such is Pelleas et Melisande , Claude Debussy's only completed opera.

Dubbed "Drama lyrique" by the composer himself, and written in at a time when the subconscious, the psyche, dreams and urges commanded the attention of science and art, this music searches the souls of its characters with its subtle nuances. Pelleas and Golaud are half-brothers, each loving the girl-from-nowhere Melisande. The elder, dominant Golaud makes her his wife; the younger Pelleas is the soul-mate of the taciturn, strangely vulnerable Melisande and an equally mysterious bond of concealed love is formed between them.

The consummately precise staging by Nikolaus Lehnhoff has a cast to match these wondrous sounds. This exceptional production "achieves what actually can only be understood as magic. Pelleas et Melisande Opera Bastille Paris, Philippe Jordan gives a transparent reading of Debussy' haunting score. Pelleas et Melisande [Opera] Malmo Opera, When Debussy completes the score, based on the eponymous symbolist play by Maurice Maeterlinck, of Pelleas et Melisande in , the world of opera still abides by Richard Wagner and the upheaval he caused with Tristan und Isolde.

But Debussy decides to stand on the exact opposite side, and uses his new opus to preach a new aesthetic creed. In depicting the forbidden love story between the timid Pelleas and the beautiful Melisande, kept apart by an unfortunate marriage, the French composer brings us back to the immortal legend of Tristan and Isolde, but this time showing the world that the future of music could very well lie far away from Wagner's overwhelming lyricism and outsized rhetoric.

This new production, created by one of the rising stars of French stage direction Benjamin Lazar for the Malmo Opera headed by Ingmar Bergman from to , encapsulates all the different aspects of this mysterious work, from the oniric poetry invented by Maeterlinck and Debussy to the realism, poignant because openly simple and even mundane, of these profoundly human beings lost in a forest full of sound and symbols that will never let them escape.

During the s Vladimir Deshevov — was regarded as one of the most promising younger Soviet composers. Darius Milhaud, who made his acquaintance in during a visit to Leningrad, praised him in the French press as a "genius" and "extremely original". However, subsequent attempts to make his compositions better known abroad were unsuccessful. In followed Dechevov's best-known composition: But such were the ideological tensions of this period that this avant-garde work soon disappeared from the public stage.

Although Dechevov was one of the chief proponents of the left wing musical avant-garde in the s and explicitly came out in favour of critical appropriation of elements from Western modernism, he was not subjected to direct ideological attacks during the Stalinist era. Neither, however, despite clearly moderating his compositional style, did he succeed in obtaining a prominent position in the conformist musical culture of socialist realism that held sway after It was only after the outbreak of the Second World War that he started once again to produce major works of his own: However, these did not prevent his name from increasingly being forgotten.

Anna Bolena version Reate Festival, Anna Bolena Bergamo Musica Festival, Anna Bolena tells of a human drama of solitude and oppression; it is a work of psychological introspection centered, both from a dramaturgical and vocal point of view, around the protagonist, who soars to peaks of music splendour.

A far-reaching opera, in which events and the tension developments between characters are thoroughly investigated.

It is a very significant work in the history, as well as in Donizetti's own personal history, even though nowadays - and rightly so - it is no longer regarded, as it once was, as a sort of impromptu miracle. Convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali Le La Scala, Don Gregorio Bergamo Musica Festival, Don Gregorio is the Neapolitan adaptation that Donizetti worked on his own L'ajo nell'imbarazzo , an opera first staged at the Teatro Valle in Rome on 4th February The subject was based on the play of the same name by Giovanni Giraud and the libretto of the original version was drawn up by Jacopo Ferretti, one of the Italy's leading librettists in the early nineteenth century.

When Donizetti set to work on his Neapolitan version two years later, he was assisted by Andrea Leone Tottola whom he already worked with some of his operas. Although some of the traditional passages were replaced by prose dialogue, a new numbers were added and others eliminated, Don Gregorio was still successful when it premiered on 11th June at the Teatro Nuovo in Naples.

Don Pasquale Geneva Grand Theater, Don Pasquale Glyndebourne, One of the reasons why Donizetti's Don Pasquale is regarded as a cornerstone of the Italian comic opera tradition is because its characters are no mere commedia dell'arte stereotypes, but complex, vulnerable human beings. This is brought to the fore in Mariame Clement's sensitive and perceptive production, which was hailed by the Financial Times as a Glyndebourne classic'.

Acclaimed buffo baritone Alessandro Corbelli sings the title role 'with just the right degree of lugubriousness', while Danielle de Niese, one of today's most sought-after sopranos, is an 'engaging' and irresistible' Norina The Telegraph. Bel canto specialist Enrique Mazzola conducts with flair and panache. Elisir d'amor L' Bergamo Musica Festival, Staged in Milan in , L'Elisir d'amore was written in a remarkably short time by librettist Felice Romani who based the text on a French libretto that Eugene Scribe had written for Daniel Auber and staged in Paris a year earlier.

Romani's wife claimed that the whole work was written within a fortnight, an obvious exaggeration, since it seems that Donizetti had already completed much of the opera some three weeks before it was to be staged, not to open the season, but to be staged as a later part of it.

Who wouldn't want a love potion? Even today, quite a few people would readily trust Dulcamara and his promises of eternal happiness. The successful blend of comic and lyrical elements, of fun and feeling, are what make of L'Elisir d'amore such an enjoyable opera. A sparkling Alex Esposito leads the rest of the cast in this entertaining production of one of Donizetti's most beloved operas. Elisir d'amore L' Glyndebourne, Acclaimed Italian conductor Maurizio Benini makes his Glyndebourne debut in Donizetti's intoxicating and deeply touching opera, whose fast-moving comic story unfolds the romantic rivalry between penniless farmhand and bumptious soldier, both vying for the love of Adina.

Will the bogus Dr. Dulcamara's potion, the elixir of love, help farmhand Nemorino win her heart? Elisir d'amore L' Paris National Opera, After an absence of almost twenty years L'elisir d'amore is back at the Paris Opera in a crazy version by Laurent Pelly.

The plot is simple but effective: Add to this a sparkling musical language and marvellously inspired melodies - including the legendary "Una Furtiva Lagrima" - and you have the authentic masterpiece Donizetti turned out in just two weeks.

Transposing the plot to the Italy of the s, director Laurent Pelly offers us an absolute jewel, beautifully crafted and shot through with poetry. La fille du regiment Vienna State Opera, Gaetano Donizetti may have achieved immortality with his comic operas Don Pasquale and L'Elisir d'amore, and won a lasting place in the hearts of coloratura sopranos everywhere with Maria Stuarda and Lucia di Lammermoor, but for sheer entertainment, his La Fille du Régiment can't be beat.

The plot revolves around Marie, the "daughter of the regiment", who was found on the battlefield as a baby and raised by the soldiers as their daughter.

She falls in love with the young Tyrolean Tonio, who joins the regiment in order to be near her. When the Marquise de Birkenfeld hears about Marie, she claims that she is her long-lost niece, whom she will turn into a lady Her plans backfire, of course, as Marie will never abandon her Tonio and most certainly never become a lady! French soprano Natalie Dessay, not only a dazzling singer but also a gifted actress, effortlessly sweeps her castmates along in this turbulent buffo delight of an opera.

Her partner is Juan Diego Florez, one of the leading young tenors of our time. Clad in lederhosen, he cheerfully seduces Marie — and the Lucia di Lammermoor Bergamo Musica Festival, Among all Donizetti's operas, Lucia di Lammermoor has always been the favourite for both audiences and singers: First staged on the evening of 26th September , the work was based on Sir Walter Scott's novel The Bride of Lammermoor which was published in June This novel received a mixed reception from the critics.

Blackwood's, a popular journal at the time, declared it to be 'a pure and magnificent tragic romance', whilst other magazines regarded it as far too gloomy. Based on real-life events of , this tale of love, feuds, deception and madness appealed very greatly to Scott's more general readership, as well as to some of the librettists and composers of his time; within fifteen years of the novel's publication at least five operas had been composed, based on the story of Lucia and her unhappy fate.

It is no surprise, then, that Salvadore Cammarano relished the prospect of writing the libretto for such an opera himself and that Donizetti took to the idea equally enthusiastically. Lucrezia Borgia Bavarian State Opera, The phenomenal Edita Gruberova, the world's undisputed Queen of bel canto, proves once again why she deserves this title: Her performance, noted Opera Magazine, "vindicated the Munich audience's near-idolization of her".

With Lucrezia Borgia, Gruberova follows up her recent triumphs in Roberto Devereux and Norma with another bel canto masterwork. Singing with "exquisite purity" Opera Magazine , the soprano also beguiles with her physical presence. Stage director Christof Loy and two-time Emmy Award-winning video director Brian Large both focus on the plot's dramatic potential and Gruberova's talent for expressing it with every tone and gesture.

The singer is excellently paired with young tenor Pavol Breslik as her son Gennaro. Breslik, a native of Slovakia like Gruberova, gives such a radiant interpretation of the tormented youth that he is now being hailed as "the most promising new voice among lyrical tenors" Neue Zürcher Zeitung. Lucrezia Borgia Teatro Donizetti, Based on Victor Hugo's most sensational play, Lucrece Borgia, a scandalous tale of murder, torture, incest, homosexuality, drunkenness and orgies, Donizetti's opera is one of the great masterpieces of Italian bel canto repertoire.

While omitting some of its more excessive elements, the libretto by Felice Romani inspired Donizetti to compose superb arias, duets, ensembles and choruses, bringing each act to a stirring conclusion. Beautifully costumed and designed, brimming with high drama and pathos, this production stars in the infamous title role Greek diva Dimitra Theodossiou, praised for her stupendous acting and singing in Donizetti's Roberto Devereux.

Maria Stuarda Sferisterio Opera Festival, In Donizetti's opera Maria Stuarda the roles of the doomed queen and her cousin, Elizabeth I, have been taken by some of the greatest divas, from Malibran to Gruberova and Tosi to Baltsa, each revelling in the high drama of their tragically linked fates. Maria Stuarda Teatro Donizetti, With the release of this Maria Stuarda, recorded live in , Dynamic makes an historic move, becoming the first Italian label to produce a DVD opera.

This very high quality production by Teatro Donizetti di Bergamo features, in the roles of the two queens, Carmela Remigio Maria Stuarda and Sonia Ganassi Elisabetta , two great artists here making a fine display of their excellent vocal and acting skills. Francesco Esposito's direction and costumes and Italo Grassi's sets are very effective and superbly highlighted by the filming. What makes this release even more interesting is the use of a new critical edition made by the renowned Swedish musicologist Anders Wiklund for Casa Ricordi.

Marino Faliero edition Bergamo Musica Festival, Donizetti's fiftieth opera, Marino Faliero, was first performed in Paris on 12 March with a cast comprising four of the finest singers of the period before premiering in London a few weeks later. Although these premieres were both overshadowed by Bellini's I Puritani, Marino Faliero subsequently enjoyed a long and successful run on international performances throughout the 19th century before disappearing from the stage until its modern revival in Set in Venice in , it remains a major work of Italian Romanticism, sentimental, martial, full of conspiratorial adventure and culminating with the execution of the leading role.

Olivo e Pasquale [Opera] Fondazione Donizetti, This sparkling opera buffa is a premiere from the Donizetti Festival of Bergamo, with the part of Pasquale in Neapolitan dialect.

It is the story of two rich merchant brothers from Lisbon, who are used to weighing everything against their bargaining power. Also the marriage of Pasquale's niece Isabella is a bargain to them: The gags among the various are hilarious - especially those between the two brothers, who have completely different characters - creating an almost surreal atmosphere.

The show is very colourful, thanks to the rich sets and costumes. Pia de' Tolomei La Fenice, In recent years not only music festivals but also important opera theatres have turned their attention towards the neglected masterpieces of the lyrical repertoire.

Thus also Venice's Teatro La Fenice, in a commendable effort, staged this Pia de' Tolomei by Donizetti, with some of the best singers available today for this type of repertoire. Initial response to this opera, which was performed for the first time in , was ambiguous, so much so that Donizetti re-worked it as many as three times. The version here recorded is that of the critical edition recently published by Ricordi, with the tragic finale originally conceived by the composer.

The listener will undoubtedly wonder, once more, at Donizetti's wealth of melodic inspiration, especially when it comes to the character of Pia, wonderfully interpreted here by Patrizia Ciofi. Rita, ou Le mari battu Opera Royal de Wallonie, The thorny subject of marital violence is set against a hilarious backdrop in this one-act farce where, contrary to what we are used to seeing in opera, tenor and baritone do their best to free themselves of the female protagonist, to whom both are married.

No doubt, Gaspar's aria on the joys of chastising one's wife in the way she deserves causes a few raised eyebrows nowadays, but the funny side is genuine and the music is brilliant, making of this forgotten little opera a true gem.

Roberto Devereux Bavarian State Opera, Friedrich Haider conducts the chorus and orchestra of the Bavarian State Opera, and the recording is directed by Emmy award winner Brian Large. The furious coloraturas, the swelling tones, the outbursts, the nearly inaudible groans — everything fuses into an image of psychological desolation.

Roberto Devereux Bergamo Musica Festival, One of Donizetti's most emotionally raw operas, Roberto Devereux ossia Il conte di Essex was also the third to be loosely based on episodes in the life of Queen Elizabeth I. It deals with the love of Elizabeth and her favourite, the Earl of Essex, perhaps most tellingly expressed in the Act I duet, Nascondi, frena i palpiti, o misero mio core Hide, hold back your palpitation, oh my wretched heart!

Elizabeth's subsequent abdication is, however, a matter of dramatic licence, yet provides a memorable operatic conclusion to this tragedy of love and jealousy as she despairs at the death of her lover — Quel sangue versato al ciel s'innalza The blood that is spilt rises up to Heaven.

Directed by Francesco Bellotto, this was the inaugural production of the Bergamo Music Festival , featuring the Greek soprano and leading Donizetti specialist, Dimitra Theodossiou, and the young American baritone Andrew Schroeder, both in superb voice.

Roberto Devereux Teatro Carlo Felice, Roberto Devereux composed on saw the light of day during a period of intense creativity for Gaetano Donizetti. After its premiere and up until , Devereux was performed almost uninterruptedly. In the years that followed it would also enjoy a successful international career, throughout Europe and in the Americas, with versions in French, German, Russian and Hungarian. When Donizetti moved to Paris in , he enriched the opera with the overture that paraphrases the British anthem God Save the Queen.

The Queen dominates from her very entrance, a true protagonist, here performed by the great Mariella Devia: Roberto Devereux Teatro Real, This statement encapsulates great operatic themes, and it is the culmination of an opera that reveals the passions of characters who live among palace intrigues.

Written in the mature period of the leader of Italian romanticism, the opera displays a great vocal virtuosity, and is an example of Donizetti prizing the voice above all in the genre.

The staging, by South African director Alessandro Talevi, who has been very successful in great opera houses as well as with more experimental theatre, places the play in an undetermined period, focusing on the chiaroscuro. Rosmonda d'Inghilterra [Opera] Fondazione Donizetti, Revived after years in oblivion, the stagin of Rosmonda d'inghilterra at Bergamo's Teatro Donizetti proved fascinating for the Italian public. From the excellent cast of singers, Jessica Pratt and Eva Mei gave stand-out performances.

The opera revolves around a tale of love and intrigue surrounding the main protagonists - the fampus Queen of Eleanor of Aquitaine, her husband Henry II of England, and the fair Rosamund de Clifford. Rosmonda is the quintessential innocent, unaware that the man she loves is the King of England and that she has unwittingly become a rival to the much-feared Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine.

Eleanor, having already had her first marriage annulled for reasons of consanguinity, is unwilling to see her second marriage fail. Only the faithful page Arturo, secretly in love with Rosmonda, knows that the Queen is aware of her husband's betrayal; but he too is embroiled in this game of deceit, hoping that he will end up winning the girl.

The emotional and dramatic development is very effective. There is not a page in this score without some example of brilliant writing, a captivating theme, a moving passage. It all goes to prove how deeply original Donizetti was, and how much there is still to be discovered about this under-appreciated composer. Laura Polverelli portrayed with elegance and pride the character of Elizabeth, her furies, doubts and jealousies; Maria Pia Piscitelli was a wonderful Maria Stuarda, passionate, sorrowful, proud, dignified when sentenced to death, recalling her past sins yet conscious of her innocence" MusicCultura.

Adventures of Pinocchio The Opera North, Opera North's enchanting staging of The Adventures of Pinocchio , Jonathan Dove's 21st opera, is a wittily inventive feast for the eyes and ears. A full-length, through-composed grand opera with 29 characters, a sizeable chorus and a profound symphonic score, it is overflowing with visual delights, and children will love it! A sublime achievement by Martin Duncan and team, this production shines a bright new light on Collodi's dream-like original story, full of charm, darkness and magic.

The superb ensemble stars Victoria Simmonds in the title role, and the orchestra and chorus respond splendidly under David Parry's vibrant baton. Rusalka Bavarian State Opera, Rusalka La Monnaie - De Munt, Antonin Dvorak's next to last opera draws its substance from the underwater wonderland of little mermaids, Undines and Melusines: Rusalka , a water nymph, wishes to become human in order to be loved by the young prince.

Despite being warned against it, she asks the witch Jezibaba to help her. In order for her wish to be fulfilled, Rusalka must give up her voice and face eternal damnation if her love fails. Jaroslav Kvapil's libretto inspired Dvorak to compose a masterpiece, a compelling opera full of poignant lyricism and dramatic twists. In this widely acclaimed interpretation, the fairytale elements assume frighteningly realistic dimensions making this enchanting production a psychoanalytical study of male fantasies and female archetypes.

Claude Lyon Opera, The synopsis of Claude is based on a true story. Robert Badinter has read again and again the original file from the judicial archives of Troyes. Claude is a silk worker from la Croix-Rousse. He tries to lives a happy life with his wife and daughter. For them and for him he refuses the misery imposed by their condition. When his boss lays off workers to replace them by new English machines. Claude grabs his rifle and run to the barricades.

Claude is sentenced to 7 years of hard-Labor at Clairvaux's prison workshop. His love for the quality of his work and his hate of injustice makes him a charismatic figure for the others prisoners. To weaken him, the prison warden separates Claude from his most precious friend, Albin. From this, follows a chain of injustice and violence in witch Claude finish to kill the director.

He will himself be "guillotined" decapitated. Claude is a plea against prison and for human dignity worn by magnificent performers: This thrilling opera is staged by Olivier Py. Manuel de Falla's short opera La vida breve is perhaps the greatest opera in the entire Spanish repertoire. Premiered in , it is the tragic story of the poor gypsy Salud, whose lover Paco betrays her and plans to wed a wealthy young woman.

While not rejecting the folklore aspects of the original libretto, del Monaco creates a kind of psychological chamber drama in which the heroine Salud is on stage at all times, as if witnessing her own living nightmare of blood and shame. Carlisle Floyd is one of America's foremost composers. Though he has also written in other forms, he is renowned for his operas, for which he also writes the libretti. The most famous and popular is his third opera, Susannah , premiered in and the second most performed of all American operas.

Updated and set in Tennessee, it is loosely based on the Apocryphal tale of Susanna and the Elders. The work is rooted in vernacular folk melodies and hymns and contains soaring melodic beauty. Olimpiade L' La Fenice, Remembered as the leading exponent of Venetian comic opera if not its absolute creator, Baldassare Galuppi opened the Carnival season of Milan's Teatro Ducale with an opera seria which he dominated drama per musica.

L'Olimpiade is based on the Metastasio libretto which served perhaps more composers of the eighteenth century than any other. Although respecting the format tradition. Galuppi managed by adroit cuts and additions which naturally enraged Metastasio to product a seamless sequence of colorful arias and recitatives delineating by musical devices the characters and emotion of the seven protagonists.

Andrea Chenier Bregenz Festival, With his spectacular production of Umberto Giordano's Andrea Chenier, director Keith Warner unites intellectual depth and exciting entertainment for the eyes and ears using every possible resource offered by Bregenz's floating stage.

The opera is both a moving love story and a historical thriller with a highly emotional score. Fedora [Opera] Teatro Carlo Felice, The soprano Daniela Dessi died suddenly on 20th August , aged She was hailed by critics and colleagues as one of the finest voices the world of opera has ever known.

Dynamic pays tribute to the great soprano with this recording, filmed just one year before her untimely death. Her performance of Giordano's Fedora was one of the pinnacles of her stunning artistic career.

In the famous aria O grandi occhi lucenti from Act One, she delivers a technically perfect and emotionally passionate performance worthy of a great star.

The story takes place at the end of the 19th century, in St. It's an operatic crime story, a drama of passion, revenge and guilt that unravels against a historical backdrop of Czarist Russia's political and ideological conflicts in the late 19th century. Daniela Dessi is a complete prima donna of outstanding finesse, her rich voice both powerfully intense and deeply expressive.

Tenor Fabio Armiliato shines particularly in the famous aria Amor ti vieta from Act Two, with a commanding and highly expressive stage presence in support of a powerful and wonderfully nuanced voice.

The finale of the opera is reserved for the two protagonists, companions both on stage and in life. Marcella Festival della Valle d'Itria, This centenary performance of Umberto Giordano's Marcella was prepared from the composer's manuscript, the score and parts having been destroyed during World War II. Recalling Verdi's La Traviata and Puccini's La Rondine , as well as Giordano's own Andrea Chenier and Fedora , Marcella is the story of a poor girl and a painter whose idyllic affair is shattered when events reveal that her true love is actually a prince incognito.

Satyagraha Wurttemberg State Theatre, The preocupation of the composer of "minimal music", Philip Glass, with Indian music and his interest in Gandhi began in during his first visit to India where he met Ravi Shankar. Since then, the rhythmic figures of Indian music have exercised a significant influence on his music which has a strong meditative and almost hypnotic effect through the repetitive sequences of tones with minimal changes.

Glass's work needs time to unfold its hypnotic effect and fascination. With his second opera Glass didn't want to draw a historic portrait of Mahatma Gandhi. Instead he used the example of Gandhi's work during the last years between and in South Africa to draw an outline of the current worldwide political and religious problems. In South Africa Gandhi formulated his theory of passive resistance and civil disobedience known as Satyagraha as a reaction to the government's discrimination against the Indian population evidenced by its denial of basic rights such as the right to vote.

Ruslan and Lyudmila Bolshoi Opera, The reopening show of the historical stage of the Bolshoi Theatre by Jurowski and Tcherniakov. Ruslan and Lyudmila , the fable of Mikhail Glinka from a poem of Pushkin , and symbolic Russian opera in itself, was an apposite choice to open the of the majestic Moscow opera, after its long renovation. Tcherniakov transposes Glinka's opera into the 21st century exposing the protagonists exposing the protagonists to contemporary forms of temptations: Iphigenie en Tauride [Opera] Opernhaus Zurich, Gluck's wonderful but neglected opera Iphigenie en Tauride , inspired by the Greek legend, is treated with forceful and convincing simplicity in Klaus Guth's revolutionary production stated the Zurich Opera House.

The psychological drama in a tense atmosphere of fears and traumas is underline by Guth's use of huge masks and enclosed space. Conductor William Christie and his typically transparent but never cold orchestral sound perfectly match the descriptive elements in Gluck's score, while the Armenian mezzo-soprano Juliette Galstain as a fabulously good Iphigenie, the leading American opera baritone Rodney Gilfry as Oreste and the deceased South African tenor Deon van der Walt as Pylade head a superb cast.

Orfeo ed Euridice Castell de Peralada Festival, To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the ambitious "Festival Internacional de Musica Castell de Peralada", the Catalan theater collective La Fura dels Baus and its director Carlus Padrissa have staged Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice with three splendid soloists in a production that confirms the Fura's creativity. The most striking aspect of the production is the participation of the orchestral ensemble in the action.

Padrissa also makes abundant stage use of the chorus, who depict souls or demons. With its stunning effects, expert lighting and video projections, the production grabs the viewer from the very start.

Orfeo ed Euridice Royal Opera House, According to legend, Orpheus' magical power as a musician enabled him to regain his wife from the dead on condition that he did not look at her on the journey back from Hades - a condition it proved impossible to fulfil. In Harry Kupfer's updated version, Orfeo, in leather jacket, trainers and jeans, sees his Euridice die in a street accident.

Succumbing to depression, he languishes in Hades - a psychiatric hospital - before taking his electric guitar to charm the beasts in an inner-city concrete jungle. 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Lot Lizards near me Pingback: Sporting Goods Store in Texas Pingback: Casted as Manon, Annick Massis together with Alessandro Liberatore on his debut as De Grieux, the opera was a mainstay of the Opera-Comique in Paris, reaching its 1,th performance there in Eulalio Tirado Lizarraga Pingback: Formation anglais aix en provence Pingback: Director Katharina Thalbach cheerfully evokes a magic world of woodland sprites and candy dreams and creates an enchanting fantasy world filled with high spirits, fairytale fantasy and genial comedy. Kizi trek game 2 kizi 2 games. Sub Zero repair Beverly Hills Pingback: Michael Spyres and Enea Scala. Doctor Atomic DNO, Acne Facial Treatments Hollywood Pingback: Though he has also written in other forms, he is renowned for his operas, for which he also writes the libretti.

Una coppia agli antipodi! Non è una strada molto pulita, ma vale la pena passarci e spulciare tra gli espositori esterni delle librerie, alla ricerca di qualche vecchia uscita editoriale e libri di ogni genere.

Cosa si vede in quella vetrina? Degli scoiattoli e dei coniglietti colorati, che ammiccano alle creazioni artistiche della Cracking Art , e degli insoliti manichini. È un posto da visitare, senza dubbio. Questo grazioso angolo di stile fa capolino su Facebook con i suoi aggiornamenti… le vetrine stanno cambiando, nuovi articoli e una nuova aria stanno per arrivare!

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Altri negozi, altri posti? Su Yelp vedrete cosa hanno visto i miei occhi! After the composer's death it disappeared from the repertoire, only to be revived with the present staging. The score, stylistically comparable to the late Verdi, reveals unusual attention to orchestration and uses richly chromatic language. It may be set alongside operas like Ponchielli's La Gioconda and Arrigo Boito's Mefistofele , often showing a high quality of melodic inspiration.

Billy Budd Glyndebourne, Glyndebourne has a proud association with the operas of Benjamin Britten, however until had never staged Billy Budd. The all-male opera with a libretto co-written by EM Forster, is based on the battle between pure good and blind evil, and is set on a British man-'o-war ship.

Michael Grandage, Artistic Director of the Donmar Warehouse, chose this work to make his long-awaited operatic debut. Sir Mark Elder returned to conduct the production, marking the th opera production in his illustrious career. Thirty years after the original broadcast, Owen Wingrave returned to the small screen in a new version by the highly-regarded music and arts director Margaret Williams, who reveals through a vivid film vocabulary the intensity of the drama and its passionate realization in Benjamin Britten's music.

Shot entirely on location, the story is updated from Edwardian times to the s, establishing a connection with World War II. Gerald Finley portrays Owen Wingrave, scion of a soldier family whose reluctance to join the family trade reflects Britten's own pacifist principles. Taunted and rejected by a hostile family, Owen confronts the ghosts of the past to rebut the charges of cowardice.

Libretto by Myfanwy Piper. The Hidden Heart 58 minutes profiles Britten, the leading twentieth century British composer, telling the story of his life, reflecting on his music and his lifelong relationship with his partner and muse, tenor Peter Pears.

In London, a young governess is hired by the elegant and mysterious tutor of two children to supervise their education at Bly Manor, deep in the English countryside.

Her employer imposes one strict condition, however: Assisted by an elderly housekeeper, Mrs. Grose, the young woman arrives at Bly and soon discovers that the seemingly angelic children Miles, twelve, and Flora, eight conceal a dark secret, namely the pernicious ghosts of two former domestics, Peter Quint and Miss Jessel, who force the children to keep the secret of their suspicious past and plan to take them under their ultimate control.

This is what the Governess must face, either with the children or without them. Flora will be saved in extremis, but little Miles will perish in escaping - perhaps - from Quint's demonic clutches. The production imagined by Luc Bondy extracts the essential of the libretto of Myfanwy Piper inspired by a story by Henry James. In an atmosphere reminding Hitchcock movies, where we can feel the tension, the stage director's work keep the suspense of the Didone La Teatro Malibran, After his successful debut in with Le nozze di Peleo e di Teti , Pier Francesco Cavalli for the first time sets about writing music for a story that is both tragic and heroic with an almost unwonted deployment of means and new expressive intent.

Hiring Giovanni Francesco Busenello, a noble amateur as his lyricist, La Didone became one of the most tragic, tormented operas of the entire seventeenth century.

Cavalli satisfies the requirements of a mixed audience both by pampering to the visual attractions of the spectacle and by aiming for more impassioned pathos and expressivity than in his previous essays.

He studies and enriches the work's language inserting dramatic substance and striving for a melodic conception that certainly recalls that of his "maestro" Monteverdi yet also steps beyond it. Ercole amante DNO, Commissioned to celebrate the marriage of the Sun King, Louis XIV, and Marie Therese of Spain, the original production of Cavalli's Ercole Amante took two years to complete and, at the time, was the grandest show ever performed in Europe.

DNO's contemporary, hilarious and surreal production, directed by David Alden, is a triumph of opera buffa, a riot of decoration and symbolism complemented by Constance Hoffman's exceptional costumes. La virtu de' strali d'Amore was the first of ten operas Cavalli wrote with librettist Giovanni Faustini.

Set in Cyprus, the plot involves enchanted and pastoral elements, love and its thwarting, the counterpointing of Man and God, sorcery, revelation and ultimate resolution, all accomplished in a brilliant series of scenes. A follower of Monteverdi, Cavalli reveals the influence of the older man but also his own pronounced independence. Fabio Biondi and Europa Galante have become one of the most admired partnerships in the history of baroque music performance.

David et Jonathas Festival d'Aix-en-Provence, The opera has been in the repertoire of Les Arts Florissants since and was first presented in a stage production by William Christie at the Aix-en-Provence Festival This release is a special event for all Baroque music lovers. Written a year after the death of Lully, this lyric tragedy allows Charpentier to develop beyond the religious dimension, a story of male friendship and forbidden love between David and Jonathas.

An excellent cast gathered around William Christie and Les Arts Florissants brings young singers to the title roles: The role of Jonathas is given to a woman: The staging by Andreas Homoki Director of the Zurich Opera since summer focuses on the psychological aspect of this forbidden love story, giving a moving reading of the drama.

Alice in Wonderland Bavarian State Opera, Yet the musical house she constructs with the building blocks of the past and the present is definitely her own house, which she has designed and which self-assuredly proclaims her unmistakable individuality and style.

It is a thoroughly modern house that welcomes everyone who loves music. Unsuk Chin, born in Seoul, Korea, in , had always been fascinated by Lewis Carroll's fairy tale for children and adults. Director Achim Freyer, whose productions have been setting standards for decades, sees Chin's opera as a collection of "dream sequences," for which he has created imaginary spaces: Arlesiana L' Fondazione Pergolesi Spontini, Il Matrimonio segreto was first staged in Vienna on 7th February and was also one of the greatest successes in the history of the eighteenth-century opera.

It is universally recognized as Cimarosa's masterpiece and the only one of his operas to have survived in the regular repertoire to this day. Matrimonio segreto Il Schwetzingen Festival, Il matrimonio segreto is Cimarosa's most famous opera buffa and it is one of the few comic operas to have maintained its place in the repertoire until today. At its first performance in , Austrian emperor Leopold II is reputed to have liked this masterpiece so much that he ordered the musicians to play it again from the beginning!

Michael Hampe's elegant, colourful production had already won international acclaim when staged in Paris, Stockholm and London - where it won the Olivier Award for Best Opera Production. His stage direction is sensitive to the music's flow and brings a welcome clarity to the many twists and deceptions in the plot.

This recording comes live from the exquisite palace rococo theatre at the Schwetzingen Festival in The Drottningholm Court Theatre Orchestra, an outstanding orchestra for early music, is specialized in music of the 17th and 18th century - their authentic interpretation sounds extremely fresh and colourful, and the playing is always full of energy and contrasts. Jackie O Teatro Comunale di Bologna, Jackie O develops around the life of Jacqueline Kennedy; her image, following her husband's assassination, of "tragic princess", and the following events, which captured the attention of the world's media.

American composer Michael Daugherty has written a very modern work, in-between opera and jazz, inspired by American musical and the popular culture of the late s.

Jackie's arias Egyptian Time, Jackie"s Credo and All his bright light possess a lyrical, melancholic and exotic allure; the ones sung by Onassis - the conceited, coarse, self-made man - have, instead,echoes of Las Vegas: Maria Callas, who in the '60s was beginning to lose her voice, retraces her life with the songs Addio delPassato and Flame Duet.

Liz Taylor is engaged in a blues-like riff that recalls a Cat on the hot tin roof atmosphere; whereas Princess Grace Kelly trills in Doris Day fashion. Andy Warhol's aria conforms to his art: In the finale dramatic climax, in Jackie's Song, Jackie duets with her dead husband's voice.

Damiano Michieletto's perfect direction is lively and full of colours, and the resemblance of the singers to real characters is impressive. A great tribute to the Pelleas et Melisande Aalto-Musiktheater Essen, Music of introverted tenderness and a libretto that hints at much and offers few answers - such is Pelleas et Melisande , Claude Debussy's only completed opera. Dubbed "Drama lyrique" by the composer himself, and written in at a time when the subconscious, the psyche, dreams and urges commanded the attention of science and art, this music searches the souls of its characters with its subtle nuances.

Pelleas and Golaud are half-brothers, each loving the girl-from-nowhere Melisande. The elder, dominant Golaud makes her his wife; the younger Pelleas is the soul-mate of the taciturn, strangely vulnerable Melisande and an equally mysterious bond of concealed love is formed between them. The consummately precise staging by Nikolaus Lehnhoff has a cast to match these wondrous sounds. This exceptional production "achieves what actually can only be understood as magic.

Pelleas et Melisande Opera Bastille Paris, Philippe Jordan gives a transparent reading of Debussy' haunting score. Pelleas et Melisande [Opera] Malmo Opera, When Debussy completes the score, based on the eponymous symbolist play by Maurice Maeterlinck, of Pelleas et Melisande in , the world of opera still abides by Richard Wagner and the upheaval he caused with Tristan und Isolde.

But Debussy decides to stand on the exact opposite side, and uses his new opus to preach a new aesthetic creed. In depicting the forbidden love story between the timid Pelleas and the beautiful Melisande, kept apart by an unfortunate marriage, the French composer brings us back to the immortal legend of Tristan and Isolde, but this time showing the world that the future of music could very well lie far away from Wagner's overwhelming lyricism and outsized rhetoric.

This new production, created by one of the rising stars of French stage direction Benjamin Lazar for the Malmo Opera headed by Ingmar Bergman from to , encapsulates all the different aspects of this mysterious work, from the oniric poetry invented by Maeterlinck and Debussy to the realism, poignant because openly simple and even mundane, of these profoundly human beings lost in a forest full of sound and symbols that will never let them escape.

During the s Vladimir Deshevov — was regarded as one of the most promising younger Soviet composers. Darius Milhaud, who made his acquaintance in during a visit to Leningrad, praised him in the French press as a "genius" and "extremely original". However, subsequent attempts to make his compositions better known abroad were unsuccessful.

In followed Dechevov's best-known composition: But such were the ideological tensions of this period that this avant-garde work soon disappeared from the public stage. Although Dechevov was one of the chief proponents of the left wing musical avant-garde in the s and explicitly came out in favour of critical appropriation of elements from Western modernism, he was not subjected to direct ideological attacks during the Stalinist era.

Neither, however, despite clearly moderating his compositional style, did he succeed in obtaining a prominent position in the conformist musical culture of socialist realism that held sway after It was only after the outbreak of the Second World War that he started once again to produce major works of his own: However, these did not prevent his name from increasingly being forgotten. Anna Bolena version Reate Festival, Anna Bolena Bergamo Musica Festival, Anna Bolena tells of a human drama of solitude and oppression; it is a work of psychological introspection centered, both from a dramaturgical and vocal point of view, around the protagonist, who soars to peaks of music splendour.

A far-reaching opera, in which events and the tension developments between characters are thoroughly investigated. It is a very significant work in the history, as well as in Donizetti's own personal history, even though nowadays - and rightly so - it is no longer regarded, as it once was, as a sort of impromptu miracle. Convenienze ed inconvenienze teatrali Le La Scala, Don Gregorio Bergamo Musica Festival, Don Gregorio is the Neapolitan adaptation that Donizetti worked on his own L'ajo nell'imbarazzo , an opera first staged at the Teatro Valle in Rome on 4th February The subject was based on the play of the same name by Giovanni Giraud and the libretto of the original version was drawn up by Jacopo Ferretti, one of the Italy's leading librettists in the early nineteenth century.

When Donizetti set to work on his Neapolitan version two years later, he was assisted by Andrea Leone Tottola whom he already worked with some of his operas. Although some of the traditional passages were replaced by prose dialogue, a new numbers were added and others eliminated, Don Gregorio was still successful when it premiered on 11th June at the Teatro Nuovo in Naples.

Don Pasquale Geneva Grand Theater, Don Pasquale Glyndebourne, One of the reasons why Donizetti's Don Pasquale is regarded as a cornerstone of the Italian comic opera tradition is because its characters are no mere commedia dell'arte stereotypes, but complex, vulnerable human beings.

This is brought to the fore in Mariame Clement's sensitive and perceptive production, which was hailed by the Financial Times as a Glyndebourne classic'. Acclaimed buffo baritone Alessandro Corbelli sings the title role 'with just the right degree of lugubriousness', while Danielle de Niese, one of today's most sought-after sopranos, is an 'engaging' and irresistible' Norina The Telegraph.

Bel canto specialist Enrique Mazzola conducts with flair and panache. Elisir d'amor L' Bergamo Musica Festival, Staged in Milan in , L'Elisir d'amore was written in a remarkably short time by librettist Felice Romani who based the text on a French libretto that Eugene Scribe had written for Daniel Auber and staged in Paris a year earlier. Romani's wife claimed that the whole work was written within a fortnight, an obvious exaggeration, since it seems that Donizetti had already completed much of the opera some three weeks before it was to be staged, not to open the season, but to be staged as a later part of it.

Who wouldn't want a love potion? Even today, quite a few people would readily trust Dulcamara and his promises of eternal happiness.

The successful blend of comic and lyrical elements, of fun and feeling, are what make of L'Elisir d'amore such an enjoyable opera.

A sparkling Alex Esposito leads the rest of the cast in this entertaining production of one of Donizetti's most beloved operas. Elisir d'amore L' Glyndebourne, Acclaimed Italian conductor Maurizio Benini makes his Glyndebourne debut in Donizetti's intoxicating and deeply touching opera, whose fast-moving comic story unfolds the romantic rivalry between penniless farmhand and bumptious soldier, both vying for the love of Adina. Will the bogus Dr. Dulcamara's potion, the elixir of love, help farmhand Nemorino win her heart?

Elisir d'amore L' Paris National Opera, After an absence of almost twenty years L'elisir d'amore is back at the Paris Opera in a crazy version by Laurent Pelly. The plot is simple but effective: Add to this a sparkling musical language and marvellously inspired melodies - including the legendary "Una Furtiva Lagrima" - and you have the authentic masterpiece Donizetti turned out in just two weeks.

Transposing the plot to the Italy of the s, director Laurent Pelly offers us an absolute jewel, beautifully crafted and shot through with poetry. La fille du regiment Vienna State Opera, Gaetano Donizetti may have achieved immortality with his comic operas Don Pasquale and L'Elisir d'amore, and won a lasting place in the hearts of coloratura sopranos everywhere with Maria Stuarda and Lucia di Lammermoor, but for sheer entertainment, his La Fille du Régiment can't be beat.

The plot revolves around Marie, the "daughter of the regiment", who was found on the battlefield as a baby and raised by the soldiers as their daughter. She falls in love with the young Tyrolean Tonio, who joins the regiment in order to be near her.

When the Marquise de Birkenfeld hears about Marie, she claims that she is her long-lost niece, whom she will turn into a lady Her plans backfire, of course, as Marie will never abandon her Tonio and most certainly never become a lady! French soprano Natalie Dessay, not only a dazzling singer but also a gifted actress, effortlessly sweeps her castmates along in this turbulent buffo delight of an opera.

Her partner is Juan Diego Florez, one of the leading young tenors of our time. Clad in lederhosen, he cheerfully seduces Marie — and the Lucia di Lammermoor Bergamo Musica Festival, Among all Donizetti's operas, Lucia di Lammermoor has always been the favourite for both audiences and singers: First staged on the evening of 26th September , the work was based on Sir Walter Scott's novel The Bride of Lammermoor which was published in June This novel received a mixed reception from the critics.

Blackwood's, a popular journal at the time, declared it to be 'a pure and magnificent tragic romance', whilst other magazines regarded it as far too gloomy. Based on real-life events of , this tale of love, feuds, deception and madness appealed very greatly to Scott's more general readership, as well as to some of the librettists and composers of his time; within fifteen years of the novel's publication at least five operas had been composed, based on the story of Lucia and her unhappy fate.

It is no surprise, then, that Salvadore Cammarano relished the prospect of writing the libretto for such an opera himself and that Donizetti took to the idea equally enthusiastically. Lucrezia Borgia Bavarian State Opera, The phenomenal Edita Gruberova, the world's undisputed Queen of bel canto, proves once again why she deserves this title: Her performance, noted Opera Magazine, "vindicated the Munich audience's near-idolization of her".

With Lucrezia Borgia, Gruberova follows up her recent triumphs in Roberto Devereux and Norma with another bel canto masterwork. Singing with "exquisite purity" Opera Magazine , the soprano also beguiles with her physical presence. Stage director Christof Loy and two-time Emmy Award-winning video director Brian Large both focus on the plot's dramatic potential and Gruberova's talent for expressing it with every tone and gesture.

The singer is excellently paired with young tenor Pavol Breslik as her son Gennaro. Breslik, a native of Slovakia like Gruberova, gives such a radiant interpretation of the tormented youth that he is now being hailed as "the most promising new voice among lyrical tenors" Neue Zürcher Zeitung.

Lucrezia Borgia Teatro Donizetti, Based on Victor Hugo's most sensational play, Lucrece Borgia, a scandalous tale of murder, torture, incest, homosexuality, drunkenness and orgies, Donizetti's opera is one of the great masterpieces of Italian bel canto repertoire.

While omitting some of its more excessive elements, the libretto by Felice Romani inspired Donizetti to compose superb arias, duets, ensembles and choruses, bringing each act to a stirring conclusion. Beautifully costumed and designed, brimming with high drama and pathos, this production stars in the infamous title role Greek diva Dimitra Theodossiou, praised for her stupendous acting and singing in Donizetti's Roberto Devereux. Maria Stuarda Sferisterio Opera Festival, In Donizetti's opera Maria Stuarda the roles of the doomed queen and her cousin, Elizabeth I, have been taken by some of the greatest divas, from Malibran to Gruberova and Tosi to Baltsa, each revelling in the high drama of their tragically linked fates.

Maria Stuarda Teatro Donizetti, With the release of this Maria Stuarda, recorded live in , Dynamic makes an historic move, becoming the first Italian label to produce a DVD opera. This very high quality production by Teatro Donizetti di Bergamo features, in the roles of the two queens, Carmela Remigio Maria Stuarda and Sonia Ganassi Elisabetta , two great artists here making a fine display of their excellent vocal and acting skills.

Francesco Esposito's direction and costumes and Italo Grassi's sets are very effective and superbly highlighted by the filming. What makes this release even more interesting is the use of a new critical edition made by the renowned Swedish musicologist Anders Wiklund for Casa Ricordi.

Marino Faliero edition Bergamo Musica Festival, Donizetti's fiftieth opera, Marino Faliero, was first performed in Paris on 12 March with a cast comprising four of the finest singers of the period before premiering in London a few weeks later.

Although these premieres were both overshadowed by Bellini's I Puritani, Marino Faliero subsequently enjoyed a long and successful run on international performances throughout the 19th century before disappearing from the stage until its modern revival in Set in Venice in , it remains a major work of Italian Romanticism, sentimental, martial, full of conspiratorial adventure and culminating with the execution of the leading role.

Olivo e Pasquale [Opera] Fondazione Donizetti, This sparkling opera buffa is a premiere from the Donizetti Festival of Bergamo, with the part of Pasquale in Neapolitan dialect.

It is the story of two rich merchant brothers from Lisbon, who are used to weighing everything against their bargaining power.

Also the marriage of Pasquale's niece Isabella is a bargain to them: The gags among the various are hilarious - especially those between the two brothers, who have completely different characters - creating an almost surreal atmosphere.

The show is very colourful, thanks to the rich sets and costumes. Pia de' Tolomei La Fenice, In recent years not only music festivals but also important opera theatres have turned their attention towards the neglected masterpieces of the lyrical repertoire.

Thus also Venice's Teatro La Fenice, in a commendable effort, staged this Pia de' Tolomei by Donizetti, with some of the best singers available today for this type of repertoire. Initial response to this opera, which was performed for the first time in , was ambiguous, so much so that Donizetti re-worked it as many as three times. The version here recorded is that of the critical edition recently published by Ricordi, with the tragic finale originally conceived by the composer.

The listener will undoubtedly wonder, once more, at Donizetti's wealth of melodic inspiration, especially when it comes to the character of Pia, wonderfully interpreted here by Patrizia Ciofi. Rita, ou Le mari battu Opera Royal de Wallonie, The thorny subject of marital violence is set against a hilarious backdrop in this one-act farce where, contrary to what we are used to seeing in opera, tenor and baritone do their best to free themselves of the female protagonist, to whom both are married.

No doubt, Gaspar's aria on the joys of chastising one's wife in the way she deserves causes a few raised eyebrows nowadays, but the funny side is genuine and the music is brilliant, making of this forgotten little opera a true gem. Roberto Devereux Bavarian State Opera, Friedrich Haider conducts the chorus and orchestra of the Bavarian State Opera, and the recording is directed by Emmy award winner Brian Large. The furious coloraturas, the swelling tones, the outbursts, the nearly inaudible groans — everything fuses into an image of psychological desolation.

Roberto Devereux Bergamo Musica Festival, One of Donizetti's most emotionally raw operas, Roberto Devereux ossia Il conte di Essex was also the third to be loosely based on episodes in the life of Queen Elizabeth I. It deals with the love of Elizabeth and her favourite, the Earl of Essex, perhaps most tellingly expressed in the Act I duet, Nascondi, frena i palpiti, o misero mio core Hide, hold back your palpitation, oh my wretched heart! Elizabeth's subsequent abdication is, however, a matter of dramatic licence, yet provides a memorable operatic conclusion to this tragedy of love and jealousy as she despairs at the death of her lover — Quel sangue versato al ciel s'innalza The blood that is spilt rises up to Heaven.

Directed by Francesco Bellotto, this was the inaugural production of the Bergamo Music Festival , featuring the Greek soprano and leading Donizetti specialist, Dimitra Theodossiou, and the young American baritone Andrew Schroeder, both in superb voice.

Roberto Devereux Teatro Carlo Felice, Roberto Devereux composed on saw the light of day during a period of intense creativity for Gaetano Donizetti. After its premiere and up until , Devereux was performed almost uninterruptedly. In the years that followed it would also enjoy a successful international career, throughout Europe and in the Americas, with versions in French, German, Russian and Hungarian. When Donizetti moved to Paris in , he enriched the opera with the overture that paraphrases the British anthem God Save the Queen.

The Queen dominates from her very entrance, a true protagonist, here performed by the great Mariella Devia: Roberto Devereux Teatro Real, This statement encapsulates great operatic themes, and it is the culmination of an opera that reveals the passions of characters who live among palace intrigues.

Written in the mature period of the leader of Italian romanticism, the opera displays a great vocal virtuosity, and is an example of Donizetti prizing the voice above all in the genre. The staging, by South African director Alessandro Talevi, who has been very successful in great opera houses as well as with more experimental theatre, places the play in an undetermined period, focusing on the chiaroscuro.

Rosmonda d'Inghilterra [Opera] Fondazione Donizetti, Revived after years in oblivion, the stagin of Rosmonda d'inghilterra at Bergamo's Teatro Donizetti proved fascinating for the Italian public. From the excellent cast of singers, Jessica Pratt and Eva Mei gave stand-out performances. The opera revolves around a tale of love and intrigue surrounding the main protagonists - the fampus Queen of Eleanor of Aquitaine, her husband Henry II of England, and the fair Rosamund de Clifford.

Rosmonda is the quintessential innocent, unaware that the man she loves is the King of England and that she has unwittingly become a rival to the much-feared Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine. Eleanor, having already had her first marriage annulled for reasons of consanguinity, is unwilling to see her second marriage fail. Only the faithful page Arturo, secretly in love with Rosmonda, knows that the Queen is aware of her husband's betrayal; but he too is embroiled in this game of deceit, hoping that he will end up winning the girl.

The emotional and dramatic development is very effective. There is not a page in this score without some example of brilliant writing, a captivating theme, a moving passage. It all goes to prove how deeply original Donizetti was, and how much there is still to be discovered about this under-appreciated composer. Laura Polverelli portrayed with elegance and pride the character of Elizabeth, her furies, doubts and jealousies; Maria Pia Piscitelli was a wonderful Maria Stuarda, passionate, sorrowful, proud, dignified when sentenced to death, recalling her past sins yet conscious of her innocence" MusicCultura.

Adventures of Pinocchio The Opera North, Opera North's enchanting staging of The Adventures of Pinocchio , Jonathan Dove's 21st opera, is a wittily inventive feast for the eyes and ears. A full-length, through-composed grand opera with 29 characters, a sizeable chorus and a profound symphonic score, it is overflowing with visual delights, and children will love it! A sublime achievement by Martin Duncan and team, this production shines a bright new light on Collodi's dream-like original story, full of charm, darkness and magic.

The superb ensemble stars Victoria Simmonds in the title role, and the orchestra and chorus respond splendidly under David Parry's vibrant baton.

Rusalka Bavarian State Opera, Rusalka La Monnaie - De Munt, Antonin Dvorak's next to last opera draws its substance from the underwater wonderland of little mermaids, Undines and Melusines: Rusalka , a water nymph, wishes to become human in order to be loved by the young prince. Despite being warned against it, she asks the witch Jezibaba to help her.

In order for her wish to be fulfilled, Rusalka must give up her voice and face eternal damnation if her love fails. Jaroslav Kvapil's libretto inspired Dvorak to compose a masterpiece, a compelling opera full of poignant lyricism and dramatic twists. In this widely acclaimed interpretation, the fairytale elements assume frighteningly realistic dimensions making this enchanting production a psychoanalytical study of male fantasies and female archetypes. Claude Lyon Opera, The synopsis of Claude is based on a true story.

Robert Badinter has read again and again the original file from the judicial archives of Troyes. Claude is a silk worker from la Croix-Rousse. He tries to lives a happy life with his wife and daughter. For them and for him he refuses the misery imposed by their condition. When his boss lays off workers to replace them by new English machines. Claude grabs his rifle and run to the barricades. Claude is sentenced to 7 years of hard-Labor at Clairvaux's prison workshop.

His love for the quality of his work and his hate of injustice makes him a charismatic figure for the others prisoners. To weaken him, the prison warden separates Claude from his most precious friend, Albin. From this, follows a chain of injustice and violence in witch Claude finish to kill the director.

He will himself be "guillotined" decapitated. Claude is a plea against prison and for human dignity worn by magnificent performers: This thrilling opera is staged by Olivier Py. Manuel de Falla's short opera La vida breve is perhaps the greatest opera in the entire Spanish repertoire. Premiered in , it is the tragic story of the poor gypsy Salud, whose lover Paco betrays her and plans to wed a wealthy young woman.

While not rejecting the folklore aspects of the original libretto, del Monaco creates a kind of psychological chamber drama in which the heroine Salud is on stage at all times, as if witnessing her own living nightmare of blood and shame. Carlisle Floyd is one of America's foremost composers. Though he has also written in other forms, he is renowned for his operas, for which he also writes the libretti. The most famous and popular is his third opera, Susannah , premiered in and the second most performed of all American operas.

Updated and set in Tennessee, it is loosely based on the Apocryphal tale of Susanna and the Elders. The work is rooted in vernacular folk melodies and hymns and contains soaring melodic beauty.

Olimpiade L' La Fenice, Remembered as the leading exponent of Venetian comic opera if not its absolute creator, Baldassare Galuppi opened the Carnival season of Milan's Teatro Ducale with an opera seria which he dominated drama per musica. L'Olimpiade is based on the Metastasio libretto which served perhaps more composers of the eighteenth century than any other.

Although respecting the format tradition. Galuppi managed by adroit cuts and additions which naturally enraged Metastasio to product a seamless sequence of colorful arias and recitatives delineating by musical devices the characters and emotion of the seven protagonists. Andrea Chenier Bregenz Festival, With his spectacular production of Umberto Giordano's Andrea Chenier, director Keith Warner unites intellectual depth and exciting entertainment for the eyes and ears using every possible resource offered by Bregenz's floating stage.

The opera is both a moving love story and a historical thriller with a highly emotional score. Fedora [Opera] Teatro Carlo Felice, The soprano Daniela Dessi died suddenly on 20th August , aged She was hailed by critics and colleagues as one of the finest voices the world of opera has ever known. Dynamic pays tribute to the great soprano with this recording, filmed just one year before her untimely death.

Her performance of Giordano's Fedora was one of the pinnacles of her stunning artistic career. In the famous aria O grandi occhi lucenti from Act One, she delivers a technically perfect and emotionally passionate performance worthy of a great star.

The story takes place at the end of the 19th century, in St. It's an operatic crime story, a drama of passion, revenge and guilt that unravels against a historical backdrop of Czarist Russia's political and ideological conflicts in the late 19th century. Daniela Dessi is a complete prima donna of outstanding finesse, her rich voice both powerfully intense and deeply expressive. Tenor Fabio Armiliato shines particularly in the famous aria Amor ti vieta from Act Two, with a commanding and highly expressive stage presence in support of a powerful and wonderfully nuanced voice.

The finale of the opera is reserved for the two protagonists, companions both on stage and in life. Marcella Festival della Valle d'Itria, This centenary performance of Umberto Giordano's Marcella was prepared from the composer's manuscript, the score and parts having been destroyed during World War II. Recalling Verdi's La Traviata and Puccini's La Rondine , as well as Giordano's own Andrea Chenier and Fedora , Marcella is the story of a poor girl and a painter whose idyllic affair is shattered when events reveal that her true love is actually a prince incognito.

Satyagraha Wurttemberg State Theatre, The preocupation of the composer of "minimal music", Philip Glass, with Indian music and his interest in Gandhi began in during his first visit to India where he met Ravi Shankar. Since then, the rhythmic figures of Indian music have exercised a significant influence on his music which has a strong meditative and almost hypnotic effect through the repetitive sequences of tones with minimal changes.

Glass's work needs time to unfold its hypnotic effect and fascination. With his second opera Glass didn't want to draw a historic portrait of Mahatma Gandhi. Instead he used the example of Gandhi's work during the last years between and in South Africa to draw an outline of the current worldwide political and religious problems. In South Africa Gandhi formulated his theory of passive resistance and civil disobedience known as Satyagraha as a reaction to the government's discrimination against the Indian population evidenced by its denial of basic rights such as the right to vote.

Ruslan and Lyudmila Bolshoi Opera, The reopening show of the historical stage of the Bolshoi Theatre by Jurowski and Tcherniakov. Ruslan and Lyudmila , the fable of Mikhail Glinka from a poem of Pushkin , and symbolic Russian opera in itself, was an apposite choice to open the of the majestic Moscow opera, after its long renovation. Tcherniakov transposes Glinka's opera into the 21st century exposing the protagonists exposing the protagonists to contemporary forms of temptations: Iphigenie en Tauride [Opera] Opernhaus Zurich, Gluck's wonderful but neglected opera Iphigenie en Tauride , inspired by the Greek legend, is treated with forceful and convincing simplicity in Klaus Guth's revolutionary production stated the Zurich Opera House.

The psychological drama in a tense atmosphere of fears and traumas is underline by Guth's use of huge masks and enclosed space. Conductor William Christie and his typically transparent but never cold orchestral sound perfectly match the descriptive elements in Gluck's score, while the Armenian mezzo-soprano Juliette Galstain as a fabulously good Iphigenie, the leading American opera baritone Rodney Gilfry as Oreste and the deceased South African tenor Deon van der Walt as Pylade head a superb cast.

Orfeo ed Euridice Castell de Peralada Festival, To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the ambitious "Festival Internacional de Musica Castell de Peralada", the Catalan theater collective La Fura dels Baus and its director Carlus Padrissa have staged Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice with three splendid soloists in a production that confirms the Fura's creativity. The most striking aspect of the production is the participation of the orchestral ensemble in the action. Padrissa also makes abundant stage use of the chorus, who depict souls or demons.

With its stunning effects, expert lighting and video projections, the production grabs the viewer from the very start. Orfeo ed Euridice Royal Opera House, According to legend, Orpheus' magical power as a musician enabled him to regain his wife from the dead on condition that he did not look at her on the journey back from Hades - a condition it proved impossible to fulfil.

In Harry Kupfer's updated version, Orfeo, in leather jacket, trainers and jeans, sees his Euridice die in a street accident. Succumbing to depression, he languishes in Hades - a psychiatric hospital - before taking his electric guitar to charm the beasts in an inner-city concrete jungle.

Hans Schavernoch has designed an ingenious set with projected imagery on revolving screens and mirrors. The German male alto, Jochen Kowalski, gives a virtuoso performance as the tormented Orfeo, with the young British soprano Gillian Webster as Euridice. Orphee et Euridice Teatro Comunale di Bologna, A major event recorded in Bologna. Opting for the French-language version of Gluck's Orpheus , David Alagna was faced with the task of achieving an appropriately subtle adaptation.

In a plot transposed to the present day, Eurydice dies in a car accident on the day of her wedding, and Orpheus's quest for his beloved is a dream beginning and ending at the cemetery. No happy ending in this interpretation, but a new approach to characterisation: Amore, sung by a baritone, becomes a funeral parlour employee and Orpheus's guide.

And Orpheus, of course, loses his loved one forever by turning to look back. The enormously talented Roberto Alagna throws himself body and soul into this production.

His incredible vitality and flawless timbre and diction make him a great Orpheus. His partner, young Italian soprano Serena Gamberoni, is simply stunning as Euridice, while French baritone Marc Barrard is suitably terrifying as the guide to the Underworld. The orchestra of the Teatro Comunale di Bologna is conducted by Giampaolo Bisanti, who masterfully brings out all Gluck's poetry, romantic melancholy and depth. Gluck's opera Orphee et Eurydice was groundbreaking in its day and, as this performance from the Theatre Musical de Paris shows, it still lends itself to radical treatment.

The composer's rejection of traditional, flamboyant, operatic bells and whistles led to a fresh form in which the lyrics hold court. The music provides the setting and emotional color in a way that is almost physical in its intensity. Gluck's readiness to incorporate the influences of other art forms - poetry, ballet, and drama - has always made this story of love rescued from the jaws of tragedy universally appealing.

Many viewers will be familiar with the program as they were originally broadcast in as part of the Great Characters in Opera TV series produced for the BBC, comprising of 7 hour-long program.

Gobbi's portrayal of the three roles featured leaves the viewer in no doubt as to why he was so popular on screen he had appeared in approximately 25 films by the time of his death in This series provides an exceptional account of a remarkable singer and actor's portrayal of three major operatic roles that featured highly throughout Tito Gobbi's distinguished career. Romeo et Juliette Arena di Verona, Romeo et Juliette Royal Opera House, Sir Charles Mackerras teases the romantic beauty from Gounod's score, which has been much admired and performed since its debut, at the Theatre Lyrique, Paris, in In this recording, the youthful Roberto Alagna as Romeo and Leontina Vaduva as the unattainable Juliette, lead an excellent cast in a touching portrayal of this story of impossible love, based on the play by William Shakespeare.

Romeo et Juliette Salzburg Festival, Guillaume Tell L'Opera de Liege, Acis and Galatea Royal Opera House, Admeto Gottingen Handel Festival, When one of Germany's most famous filmmakers and stimulating operatic directors focuses her creativity on a rarely performed Handel opera, the result is a "mixture of dancers and singers, comedy and pathos" The Times. Admeto , one of Handel's most popular operas in his lifetime, was premiered in London in January Doris Dörrie, whose Japan-inspired feature film "Cherry Blossoms - Hanami" was a major German box-office hit and won several international awards, returns to her beloved Japan in this production.

For this production, a coproduction of the Internationale Händel-Festspiele in Göttingen and the Edinburgh International Festival on the occasion of the th anniversary of Handel's death, Doris Dörrie was awarded the Edinburgh Festival's prestigious Herald Angel Award. Admeto Handel-Festival Halle, George Frideric Handel's Admeto is considered as one of the most successful operas produced in the first half of the 18th century. Along with Radamisto, Giulio Cesare, Tamerlano, Rodelinda and Alessandro , which were also written in this period, Admeto belongs to Handel's so-called "London operas" - works he composed for the Royal Academy of Music.

Axel Kohler, the celebrated counter-tenor and well-known stage director, has brought Admeto into the modern era in timeless style by the skillful application of imaginative theatrical digressions.

Kohler's production at the Halle Opernhaus revisits a work that encompasses comedy, tragedy and almost absurd grotesqueness and gives it a convincing metaphor in the form of a modern hospital.

Agrippina Atelier Lyrique de Tourcoing, Agrippina was staged for the first time in late December - or possibly at the beginning of - at Venice's Teatro San Grisostomo and met with enormous success, as testified by twenty-seven following performances, a record number even for 18th-century standards.

Agrippina 's triumph sanctioned Handel's definitive investiture as an operatic composer. After nearly years this opera appears as a masterpiece of 18th-century music and an innovative work, considering that when Handel composed it he was just twenty-four years old. The composer's melodic creativity and sense of theatre are quite remarkable.

Agrippina Schwetzingen Festival, Composed when he was just twenty-four, Agrippina was Handel's first theatrical success and is a sparkling example of his early work. It is full of his fresh, exuberantly inventive music and employs one of the finest librettos with which George Frederic Handel ever worked. The opera was composed and first performed in Venice in and, in a witty plot by an Italian cardinal, it tells the farcical story of the private lives of two ruthless figures in roman history, Nero and his mother Agrippina, and how they become entangled with the innocent Ottone and his lover Poppea.

Typically for a Handel opera, the work is centred on a series of towering arias designed to show off the virtuosity of the singers. This beautiful production by renowned opera director Michael Hampe was recorded at the exquisite 18th century palace theatre during the Schwetzingen Festival in It combines the atmosphere of a true Baroque opera with an elegant, colourful staging and brilliant musicianship.

The London Baroque Players, an outstanding orchestra for early music, which specializes in the music of the 17th and 18th century, joins an accomplished cast of singers, all baroque specialists. Alcina Vienna State Opera, Handel's operas are now so thoroughly a part of modern musical life that you might think every major opera house welcomes them.

But until November , when it introduced an absorbing new production of Alcina, the Vienna Staatsoper resisted them, not having done a Baroque opera since Monteverdi's Poppea in the s.

Adrian Noble places his Alcina into a framework which begins in the magnificent ballroom of the Devonshire-House in London Picadilly. The legendary Georgina Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, stages a play in which she is acting together with her friends, a stage on a stage. Alcina is a great musical experience geared to the Baroque curiosity. Mark Minkowski revives Handel's music in an outstanding way.

Ariodante Spoleto Festival, Handel produced a refined musical setting of a somewhat audacious title which he treated in an equally unusual manner: But Duke Polinesso covets the throne. An opera about truth and appearance, set by director John Pascoe in the 's, in the glamorous days of the British monarchy.

Giulio Cesare Glyndebourne, David McVicar's production of Giulio Cesare manages to combine serious insight with entertainment, bringing Handel's masterpiece to life in a powerful, convincing and highly intelligent way.

In every line of the complex narrative the subtle nuances are apparent, reflecting perfectly the transparent and exquisite nature of Handel's musical expression.

The outstanding singing of the all-star cast, led by a superb Sarah Connolly, and the vivid playing of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment under the energising baton of William Christie reveal the colour and dramatic character of Handel's music in a most delightful manner. As the first collaboration ever between conductor William Christie and director Luc Bondy, this production of Hercules was the major event of the opera season.

Originally Created in Aix-en-Provence in July , the show then moved on to the Palais Garnier in Paris where it was recorded in December of the same year. The Hercules received the student prize at the Golden Prague Julius Caesar ENO, Dame Janet Baker, in one of her greatest roles, leads a cast of some of Britain's finest interpreters of Baroque opera, and their performance under the baton of Sir Charles Mackerras is one of the highest musical excellence.

The opera was first performed in at the Haymarket Theatre in London using castrati singers in the heroes' roles. This production follows modern practice in using women in these parts. Dame Janet's virtuoso role as Julius Caesar has been heralded as a masterful recreation of the music which Handel wrote for the finest singers of his time.

Early music and an old craft - the charm of the stage and marionettes are unified in a spectacular performance of Handel's magic opera Rinaldo by the Lautten Compagney, conducted by baroque specialist Wolfgang Katschner, and the puppet theatre Carlo Colla e Figli. Sung by a first-class cast, this beautiful production is an exciting and memorable experience for the audience.

Serse Xerxes Semperoper Dresden, This beautiful production of Handel's Serse presents a tale of intrigue, deception and true love. Romilda, however, only has eyes for Arsamenes, as does her sister Atalanta.

Add to the mix a spurned lover, a doting father and an idiotic servant the hilarious Matteo Peirone , and one is confronted with tragedy, comedy and romance in equal measures. Superbly performed under the baton of Christophe Rousset and Les Talens Lyriques, this is an elegant and charming production with an outstanding cast.

Tamerlano Teatro Real, Teatro Real's majestic production of Handel's vivid tragedy, Tamerlano , stars a Lear-like Placido Domingo as the Turkish Sultan Bajazet, caught between pride, love and loyalty. Displaying the uniquely heroic quality of his voice, Domingo heads a superb cast, including Sara Mingardo, Monica Bacelli and Ingela Bohlin, all magnificently responsive to Paul McCreesh's authentic and luminous interpretation of the score.

The stunning theatrical staging by Graham Vick provides a splendid setting for the characters and for designer Richard Hudson's extravagant Baroque-Islamic costumes, emphasising the brilliance of one of Handel's finest dramatic achievements. Artaserse Festival della Valle d'Itria, A classic work of its genre and historical period, Artaserse was premiered in Venice in by the most famous singers of the day: It was a success for Hasse , who would, in and , re-propose the same work in two different versions.

This video features one, in world premiere. The cast is extraordinary, with the countertenor Franco Fagioli giving a great performance of the role that was Farinelli's. Fagioli easily goes up and down the extension of more that three octaves, maintaning a uniform timbre and remarkable power and resonance. Also stunning, is the aria Pallido sole sung by Sonia Prina.

Mondo della Luna Il Theater an der Wien, Conductor Nikolaus Harnoncourt's special wish for the Haydn anniversary year and for his 80th birthday was a production of Joseph Haydn's Il Mondo della Luna of With this exuberant staging by Tobias Moretti from Vienna's Theater an der Wien, Harnoncourt's wish was spectacularly fulfilled.

Contributing to the success of the production are a fine cast of physically and vocally agile singers and the rousing orchestral accompaniment of Harnoncourt's own ensemble, the Concentus Musicus Wien. Orlando Paladino Staatsoper unter den Linden, In the Summer of , the British director Nigel Lowery and the Iranian choreographer Amir Hosseinpour brought to the stage of the Berlin State Opera Unter den Linden, with colour and full of humour, the fantastic and imaginative adventures of "Racing Roland".

On the occasion of the th anniversary of the death of Joseph Haydn, the composer's most renowned opera during his lifetime, Orlando Paladino , was performed, a heroic-comical stage piece based on Ariost's famous Versepos. The Freiburg Baroque Orchestra completed this high-class production giving the music a beautiful sound and lively swing.

Bo Holten's new opera The Visit of the Royal Physician was a great success with both audience and reviewers at the premiere in It is a tragic love story from one of the most dramatic periods in the history of Denmark, when new ideas almost overturned the social order.

It is the s, and the young, idealistic doctor Struensee dreams of creating a new and better world. He is given the chance to put his ideas into practice when, almost by coincidence, he becomes royal physician to the insane King Christian VII.

Soon he is also the lover of the young Queen Caroline Mathilde.

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