Coming Up on World of Opera

CHARLES GOUNOD: Cinq-Mars

Prinzregenten Theater, Munich

Week of September 5, 2015

Bavarian Radio Chorus

Munich Radio Symphony Orchestra

Ulf Schirmer, conductor

CAST:  Véronique Gens (Princesse Marie); Mathias Vidal (Marquis de Cinq-Mars); Andrew Foster-Williams (Father Joseph); Tassis Christoyannis (Le Conseiller de Thou); André Heyboer (Fontrailles); Norma Nahoun (Marion Delorme); Marie Lenormand (Le Berger)

When this opera premiered in Paris, in 1877, it was criticized as a sort of hybrid -- stuck between the contrasting worlds of French Grand Opera and opéra comique.  Yet with its passionate, historical story, and the allure of Gounod's highly-accomplished score, it's beginning to get a second chance.

W. A. MOZART: The Abduction from the Seraglio

Proms Concerts, Royal Albert Hall, London

Week of September 12, 2015

Glyndebourne Festival Chorus

Orchestra of the Age of Englightenment

Robin Ticciati, conductor

CAST:  Sally Matthews (Konstanze); Edgaras Montvidas (Belmonte); Tobias Kehrer (Osmin); Mari Eriksmoen (Blonde); Brenden Gunelli (Pedrillo)

If you believe the story, this classic "rescue" opera is the piece the Emperor said had, "too many notes."  Judging by its lasting popularity, audiences seem to think it has just the right number of notes and so, apparently, did Mozart.

P. I. TCHAIKOVSKY: Iolanta & IGOR STRAVINSKY: Perséphone

Aix-en-Provence Festival

Week of September 19, 2015

Lyon Opera Orchestra and Chorus

Teodor Currentzis, conductor

CAST (Iolanta):  Ekaterina Sherbachenko (Iolanta); Dmitry Ulianov (René); Maxim Aniskin (Robert); Arnold Rutkowski (Vaudémont); Willard White (Ibn-Hakia); Vasily Efimov (Alméric); Pavel Kudinov (Bertrand); Diana Montague (Marta); Maria Bochmanova (Brigitta); Karina Demurova (Laura)

CAST (Perséphone):  Dominque Blanc (Perséphone); Paul Groves (Eumolpe)

A fanciful one-act opera by Tchaikovsky combines with Stravinsky's uniquely evocative melodrama in an intriguing and colorful double-bill from one of France's foremost summer festivals.