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Opera music

Florida Grand Opera announces 80th anniversary season

Florida Grand Opera (FGO) has announced its upcoming 80th anniversary season. The season will open in January 2022 with A Streetcar Named Desire. The rest of the range includes Rigoletto, Fellow Travelers and Agrippina.

Find out more about the productions and buy tickets on https://tickets.fgo.org/subscriptions/index.aspx.

Check out the full lineup below!

A tram named Désir

By André Prévin

“Stella!” … The first thing that comes to mind when you hear the title A Streetcar Named Desire. However, rest assured that André Previn’s lyrical adaptation of Tennessee Williams’ famous play will leave you with a lot more. The opera follows the downward spiral of former southern beauty Blanche Dubois, who after suffering a series of personal losses, leaves behind her wealth and privileges and moves into a dilapidated apartment with her sister and brother-in-law. Filled with soaring melodies and an orchestral score that plunges you right in the middle of New Orleans during a hot summer, A Streetcar Named Desire is a masterpiece of contemporary verism.

Sung in English with projected translations in English and Spanish

MIAMI
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts
Miami-Dade County / Ziff Ballet Opera House
January 22, 2022, at 7:00 p.m.
January 23, 2022, at 2:00 p.m.
January 25, 2022, at 8:00 p.m.

FORT LAUDERDALE
Broward Center for the Performing Arts / Au-René Theater
February 3 and 5, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.

Rigoletto

By Giuseppe Verdi

A staple in the lyrical repertoire the world over, Giuseppe Verdi’s Rigoletto is a timeless story of betrayal, shattered dreams and mistaken identity, worthy of the best cinematic thriller. Rigoletto follows the conquests of the racy Duke, who survives plots and vengeance schemes along the way. Gilda, whom he betrayed and abandoned, saves him in the opera’s final scene by sacrificing his life, leaving his own father broken and alone. Containing some of the most recognizable tunes, a gripping storyline and intense emotions, Rigoletto is sure to delight everyone, whether opera lovers or newcomers. Sung in Italian with projected translations in English and Spanish

MIAMI
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts
Miami-Dade County / Ziff Ballet Opera House
March 12, 2022, at 7:00 p.m.
March 13, 2022, at 2:00 p.m.
March 15 & 17, 2022, at 8:00 p.m.

FORT LAUDERDALE
Broward Center for the Performing Arts / Au-René Theater
March 31, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.
Apr 2, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.

Travel companions

An opera by GREGORY SPEARS
Libretto by Greg Pierce
From the 2007 novel Fellow Travelers by Thomas Mallon

Gregory Spears’ Fellow Travelers is both a story of the heart and a tense political thriller, creating an instant contemporary classic. Set against a backdrop of 1950s paranoia in Washington, DC, Fellow Travelers follows the life of aspiring young journalist Timothy Laughlin and handsome State Department official Hawkins Fuller, who are embroiled in a passionate love affair, just at the moment when Senator McCarthy begins his hunt for “sexual subversives”. in government. As his involvement deepens, Tim struggles to come to terms with his political convictions, religious beliefs, and love for Fuller, an entanglement that ends in a startling act of betrayal. If the orchestration is extremely melodic. and accessible, this opera is further reinforced by an incredibly powerful libretto, not leaving the eye dry in the house.Sung in English with projected translations in English and Spanish

LAUDERHILL
Lauderhill Performing Arts Center
April 23, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.
April 24, 2022, at 2:00 p.m.
April 26 & 28, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.

Agrippina

By GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL

One of George Frideric Handel’s first lyrical compositions, Agrippina tells the story of one of the fiercest women in opera. Once she learns that her husband Claudius died in a storm at sea, Agrippina plots to secure the throne of the Roman Empire for her son Nero. This opera is filled with exciting music to show off the most impressive vocal fireworks, in addition to being performed by a traditional Baroque orchestra, using the instrumentation of the time. Underhanded plots, love and obsession with power, Agrippina is on par with all of today’s popular telenovelas. Sung in Italian with projected translations in English and Spanish

MIAMI
Miami Scottish Rite Temple
May 14, 2022, at 6:00 p.m.
May 15, 2021, at 2:00 p.m.
May 17 & 19, 2022, at 8:00 p.m.


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Opera singer

Obituary: Clare Peploe, director whose films were known for their quirky intelligence

Death: June 23, 2021.

CLARE Peploe, who died of lung cancer at the age of 79, was a filmmaker with serious intentions, but whose work was endowed with a light touch and quirky acting that kept her away from the mainstream. Her three feature films as screenwriter and director were playfully nuanced studies of the rules of attraction in extremis. Although too fun to be considered arthouse, they never really found the commercial hiding place of other romantic comedies.

From her first feature film, High Season (1987), to her last directorial film, The Triumph of Love (2001), she merged the influences of late 20th century European cinema with English sensibilities and American. The results remain a bizarrely smart business.

Peploe’s cinematic work first began with Michelangelo Antonioni, whom she met when the Italian director entered the London party scene while preparing his swinging existential thriller, Blow Up (1966).

Peploe went on to become one of five screenwriters credited on Zabriskie Point (1970), Antonioni’s elementary hippie fable, which attempted to explore some of the era’s counter-cultural disaffection among young people. She also introduced him to the music of Pink Floyd, which was used in some of the film’s key moments. As a couple, Peploe and Antonioni have been together for eight years.

Peploe had a similar effect on Bernardo Bertolucci, whom she met around the time her controversial Marlon Brando with Last Tango in Paris (1972) was causing a stir. She then worked with him as an assistant director on his epic historical drama, 1900 (1976) as well as on Novecento (1976). The couple married in 1978 and were together until Bertolucci passed away in 2018.

Peploe co-wrote La Luna (1979), about an opera singer who has an incestuous affair with her teenage son in an attempt to wean him from heroin. She also co-wrote Besieged (1998), about a composer who falls in love with his African housekeeper. When he says he will do anything for her, she asks him to get her husband out of prison. Peploe also worked on the film as an associate producer.

Among his own films, including Rough Magic (1995), American critic Roger Ebert best summed up his work in his review of High Season, which starred Jacqueline Bisset as an expatriate photographer in Greece. It was, he said, “an example of a rare species: the smart stupid movie.”

Clare Frances Katherine Peploe was born in Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania, to English parents, William Peploe, a government official who later became an art dealer and director of the Lefevre Gallery in London, and Clotilde (née Brewster), a painter. Peploe, her sister Cloe and her brother Mark grew up first in Kenya, then Florence, Italy, and finally London.

Peploe became captivated by the cinema as a child, visiting the cinema with her mother between school at St Clare’s in Oxford and London’s independent college, Westminster Tutors.

She fell in love with the work of leading European authors such as Jean-Luc Godard while studying French at the Sorbonne in Paris and Italian at the University of Perugia. In the early 1960s, his travels abroad rang with the rise of the New Wave, whose influences fueled his own work.

It was as evident in her directorial debut, Couples and Robbers (1981), as it was two decades later in The Triumph of Love. Couples and Robbers was a half-hour short film starring Frances Low and Rik Mayall as a newly married couple who became car thieves after a lackluster marriage. The film was nominated for both Bafta and Oscars, and set the tone for Peploe’s canon to come.

High Season, co-written with his brother Mark, followed. Mark had previously worked with Antonioni on the screenplay for The Passenger (1975), and would continue to work with Bertolucci on The Last Emperor (1987), The Sheltering Sky (1990) and Little Buddha (1993).

Between films, Peploe directed Sauce for the Goose (1990), which was part of Chillers, an anthology series of short story adaptations by Patricia Highsmith. It starred Ian McShane as a salon singer who incites a woman to murder her hotel husband, although it is not known whether for love or for money.

Rough Magic (1995) starred Bridget Fonda and Russell Crowe in an adaptation of James Hadley Chase’s novel, Miss Shumway Waves a Wand. Set in the 1950s, Peploe’s film saw Fonda play an apprentice conjurer, who travels to Mexico to escape her politician fiance, and meets a Mayan shaman who gives him true magical powers. What initially looks like the stuff of a romantic screw-black leaps into more fantastic, if at times eminently silly, waters.

Peploe’s last work, The Triumph of Love, was an 18th-century romantic comedy based on Pierre de Marivaux’s 1732 play of the same name. It starred Mira Sorvino and Ben Kingsley and was produced by Bertolucci. Sorvino played the daughter of a usurper of the throne who falls in love with the rightful heir.

Despite the film’s classic roots, Peploe continued to have stylistically fun with the original material, with hand-held cameras and jump cuts giving a consciously modern take on Godard-inspired procedures. Much more than a simple tribute, the fusion of French film traditions revealed a witty, sometimes unrecognized talent whose work deserves closer examination.

She is survived by her brother Mark.


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Opera song

Obituary: Edward Berkeley, opera program director at Aspen Music Festival, 76

Berkeley was born in New York and went on to become artistic director of the Willow Cabin Theater Company and director of the Aspen Opera Theater Center where he conducted classics and championed new operas including “Eliogabalo” and “Giasone” by Cavalli and new works by Bright Sheng, Augusta Read Thomas, Michael Torke, Mark-Anthony Turnage, HK Gruber and Bernard Rand.

He has also conducted the New York premieres of plays by Derek Walcott, Israel Horovitz, Terence McNally, Leonard Melfi, Louise Page and Tennessee Williams. He has also staged the New York Shakespeare Festival, the Houston Grand Opera, the Library of Congress, the Williamstown Theater Festival, the Old Globe Theater, the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the Brooklyn Philharmonic, the Atlanta Symphony and the festivals of Spoleto and Ravinia. Most notably, he directed the cover of the Tony-nominated play “Wilder, Wilder, Wilder” in 1993.

Berkeley also taught Shakespeare at Circle in the Square Theater School and Pace University. He has also been a visiting professor for the Lindemann Young Artist Development Program at the Metropolitan Opera and a visiting professor at Carleton College, Princeton University and Williams College. He became a faculty member at The Juilliard School in 1987.


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Opera music

The finalists announced for the 2021 Art Music Awards

Celebrating the talents of Australia’s top composers and performers of contemporary classical, jazz and experimental music, this year’s awards will take place at the North Melbourne Meat Market on Tuesday, August 17, and will also include a number of live performances hosted by Barney McCall.

Presenting an unprecedented number of 23 finalists for the first time, each of the works highlighted at the 2021 Art Music Awards helps showcase the resilience and creativity of the Australian arts sector in the midst of a difficult year.

Among the nominees for this year’s awards are Saints guitarist Ed Kuepper and trio Alister Spence, Holly Harrison, Cathy Milliken, Mindy Meng Wang, Sydney Chamber Opera and Peggy Polias, who will be celebrated in 12 different categories.

The Luminary Awards will also be presented to individuals or groups who have contributed to their state or territory’s music community, with the APRA Board of Directors also naming the recipient of this year’s Richard Gill Award for Distinguished Service to Australian music.

The full list of Art Music Awards 20221 finalists is available below.

Title: Beannaicht An Long (Blessed be the boat)
Composer: Claire Maclean
Text: Traditional
Interpreter: VOICETitle: Sacred stepping stones
Composer Lisa Young
Text: Lisa Young
Interpreters: Chœur Massé, Gondwana National Choral School 2020 and Lisa Young, conductor

Title: Sing in harmony with nature
Composer: Amanda cole
Interpreters: NEO Voice Festival artists

Title: Until we meet again
Composer: Alice luck
Text: Alice luck
Interpreters: Leichhardt Espresso Chorus and Michelle Leonard OAM, artistic director

Work of the year – Dramatic

Title: Commute
Composer: Peggy polias
Text: Pierce wilcox
Interpreters: Sydney Chamber Opera, Jessica O’Donoghue, Jack Symonds, conductor, and Clemence Williams, director

Title: Female dragons do not cry; a Chamber Made & CultureLink Singapore coproduction
Composer: Erik Griswold
Interpreters: Margaret Leng Tan, performer, Tamara Saulwick, director, Nick Roux, videographer,
and Kok Heng Leun, playwright.

Title: His Black Marauder
Composer: Georgia Scott
Text: Pierce wilcox
Interpreters: Sydney Chamber Opera, Jane Sheldon, Jessica O’Donoghue, Simon Lobelson, Jack Symonds, conductor, and Danielle Maas, director.

Title: The tent
Composer: Josephine Macken
Text: Josephine Macken
Interpreters: Sydney Chamber Opera, Simon Lobelson, Mitchell Riley, Jane Sheldon, Jack Symonds, conductor and Danielle Maas, director.

work of the year – Jazz

Title: All those who travel with us
Composer: Loretta Palmeiro and Mark Isaacs
Interpreters: Loretta Palmeiro and Mark Isaacs

Title: Asteroid ecosystem
Composers: Alister Spence, Lloyd Swanton, Toby Hall and Ed Kuepper *
Interpreters: Alister Spence Threesome with Ed Kuepper
Editor: Universal Music Edition *

Title: Living
Composer: Paul Cutlan
Interpreters: Paul Cutlan String Project (Paul Cutlan, Liisa Pallandi, Caroline Hopson, James
Eccles, Oliver Miller, Brett Hirst and Tunji Beier)

Title: Spaccanapoli
Composer: Vanessa Perica
Interpreter: Vanessa Perica Orchestra

Work of the year – Grand Ensemble

Title: Kadosh Kadosh and Cursed
Composer: Yitzhak Yedid
Interpreters: Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne (NEM) and Lorraine Vaillancourt, conductor

Title: Exhibit 43 for now
Composer: Cathy Milliken
Interpreters: SWR Symphonieorchester and Titus Engel, conductor

Title: Sparkle
Composer: Holly harrison
Interpreters: San Jose State University Wind Ensemble and David Vickerman, conductor

Title: When I stand in front of you at the end of the day
Composer: Cyrus Meurant
Interpreters: Kirsten Williams and the Canberra Symphony Orchestra

Work of the Year – Chamber Music

Title: A room for her
Composer: Anne Cawrse
Interpreter: Australian string quartet

Title: Canyon 1205
Composer: Kate Neal and Grischa Lichtenberger
Interpreter: Blair Harris, cello

Title: Clarinet quintet
Composer: Gordon kerry
Interpreter: Omega set

Title: Hidden Thoughts II: Return to Sender
Composer: Katy abbott
Text: Compiled by Katy Abbott and Maureen Johnson, based on letters sent by Australians to asylum seekers in detention
Interpreters: Flinders Quartet with Dimity Shepherd, mezzo-soprano, and Richard Piper, narrator

Work of the year – Electroacoustic / Sound art

Title: An improvisation through time and space 穿越光 的 即
Composer: Mindy Meng Wang
Interpreter: Mindy Meng Wang, guzheng

Title: Closed starts
Composers: Tariro Mavondo, Ruben Lewis and Peter Knight
Interpreters: Tariro Mavondo, poetry, Reuben Lewis and Peter Knight, music, Jem Savage, sound production and Leo Dale, video production

Title: Fugue
Composer: Jane sheldon
Text: David Rattray
Interpreters: Jane Sheldon, soprano, Kirsty McCahon, double bass, and the Sydney Dance Company’s 2020 pre-professional cohort; Omer Backley-Astrachan, choreography.

Title: Oracle Room
Composer: Amanda cole
Interpreters: Lamorna Nightingale, bass flute and James Nightingale, saxophone

Performance of the year – Jazz / Improvised music

Performers: Loretta Palmeiro and Mark Isaacs
Title: All those who travel with us
Composers: Loretta Palmeiro and Mark Isaacs

Performers: Phil Slater Quintet (Phil Slater, Brett Hirst, Matthew Keegan, Matthew McMahon and Simon Barker)
Title: Gold seam
Composer: Phil Slater, Brett Hirst, Matthew Keegan, Matthew McMahon and Simon Barker

Performer: Phonetic Orchestra
Title: Silent cities
Composer: Phonetic Orchestra

Performer: Vazesh (Jeremy Rose, Hamed Sadeghi and Lloyd Swanton)
Title: The sacred key
Composer: Jeremy Rose *, Hamed Sadeghi and Lloyd Swanton
Editor: Original music edition *

Performance of the year – Rated composition

Performer: Carl Rosman
Title: Control
Composer: Jakob bragg

Performer: Emily Granger
Title: The harp and the moon
Composer: Ross edwards
Editor: BMG AM

Performer: Ensemble Offspring
Title: In mass
Composer: Alex Pozniak

Performer: Sydney Chamber Opera, Jessica O’Donoghue, Jack Symonds, conductor, and Clemence Williams, director
Title: Commute
Composer: Peggy Polias,
Text: Pierce wilcox


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Opera theater

Graham Vick, director who opened the doors to opera, dies at 67

LONDON – Graham Vick, a British opera director who has worked at prestigious houses like the Metropolitan Opera and La Scala while seeking to broaden the appeal of opera by staging works in abandoned rock clubs and old factories and bringing more diversity to the cast, died Saturday in London. He was 67 years old.

The cause was the complications of Covid-19, the Birmingham Opera Company, which he founded, declared in a press release.

Mr Vick spent much of the coronavirus pandemic in Crete, Greece, and returned to Britain in June to participate in rehearsals for a Birmingham opera production. Wagner’s “Das Rhinegold” Jonathan Groves, his agent, said in a telephone interview.

Mr. Vick was the artistic director of the company, which he saw as a way to bring opera to everyone. His productions there, which were in English, often included amateur artists. And he insisted that ticket prices stay low for everyone to attend, and to hire singers who reflect the ethnically diverse nature of Birmingham, Britain’s second largest city. His the immersive production of “Otello” by Verdi in 2009, with Ronald Samm, the first black tenor to sing the title role in a professional production in Great Britain.

The company never hosted VIP parties because Mr. Vick believed that no member of the public should be considered superior to another.

“You don’t have to be educated to be touched, moved and excited by opera,” he said in a speech at the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Awards in 2016. “You just have to experience it firsthand, without anything getting in your way. “

Opera creators must “break down the barriers and make the connections that will unleash its power for everyone,” he added.

Oliver Mears, Opera Director of the Royal Opera House, said in a press release that Mr. Vick had been “a true innovator in the way he integrated community work into our art form”.

“Many people from a wide variety of backgrounds love opera – and have experienced it for the first time – through his work,” he said.

Graham Vick was born on December 30, 1953 in Birkenhead, near Liverpool. Her father, Arnold, worked in a clothing store, while her mother Muriel (Hynes) Vick worked in the personnel department of a factory. His love of the stage blossomed at the age of 5 when he saw a production of “Peter Pan”.

“It was a complete moment on the road to Damascus”, he told the Times of London in 2014. “It was all there – the flight through the window into another world, a bigger world.”

Opera gave him similar opportunities to “fly, soar, breathe and scream,” he said.

Mr. Vick studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, England, with the intention of becoming a conductor. But he turned to directing and created his first production at 22. Two years later, he directed a production of Gustav Holst’s “Savitri” for the Scottish Opera and quickly became its production manager.

With Scottish Opera, he quickly showed his desire to bring opera to local communities. He led Opera-Go-Round, an initiative in which a small troupe traveled to remote areas of the Highlands and Isles of Scotland, often performing only with piano accompaniment. He also brought opera singers to factories to perform during lunch breaks.

Some of his productions have received mixed or even severe reviews. “Stalin was right,” Edward Rothstein wrote in The Times in his 1994 review of “Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk”, calling Mr. Vick’s production “crude, primitive, vulgar,” just as Stalin had done with the original by Shostakovich. Just as often, they were praised, however.

Despite Mr. Vick’s success in traditional operas, he sometimes criticized them. “They are huge, glamorous, fabulous and alluring institutions, but they are also a dangerous black hole where great art can so easily become a selfish product.” he told the BBC in 2012.

Mr. Vick’s work at the Birmingham Opera Company, which he founded in 1987, was celebrated in Britain for his daring vision. His first production, another “Falstaff”, was staged in a city recreation center; other productions took place in a burnt-out ballroom above a shopping center and in an abandoned warehouse.

Mr. Vick decided to use amateurs after rehearsing an opera by Rossini in Pesaro, Italy in the 1990s. It was so hot and airless one day it recalled in a 2003 conference, that he opened the doors of the theater to the street and that he was shocked to see a group of teenagers stop their football game and watch, dumbfounded.

“To achieve this type of constituency in Birmingham, we decided to recruit community members into our work,” he said. People who bought tickets should be reflected on stage and in the production team, he added.

Mr. Vick kept coming back to Birmingham because, he said, it was only there, “in the glorious participation of the public and the artists”, that he felt whole.

The company was praised not only for its inclusiveness. His 2009 staging of “Otello” “puts you in your heart and guts”, Rian Evans wrote in The Guardian. And Mark Swed, in the Los Angeles Times, called Mr. Vick’s production “Karlheinz Stockhausen’s“ Mittwoch aus Licht ”in 2012”from another world. “(It included string players playing in helicopters and a camel, and was part of the 2012 Olympics celebrations in Britain.)

“If opera is meant to change your perception of what is possible and useful, to dream the impossible dream and all that, then this is clearly the spiritually uplifting way to do it,” added Swed.

Mr. Vick, who died in hospital, is survived by his partner, choreographer Ron Howell, and an older brother, Hedley.

In his speech at the Royal Philharmonic Society awards, Mr Vick urged actors in the opera world to “get out of our ghetto” and follow Birmingham’s lead in trying to reflect the community in which a company is based.

People must “embrace the future and help build a world we want to live in”, he said, “not hide and play while Rome burns”.

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Coroner: Berkeley died of heart disease

Courtesy of Aspen Festival and Music School
Berkeley with students at Wheeler Opera House in 2016. Elle Logan / Aspen Music Festival and School

Aspen music festival and school opera director Edward Berkeley is believed to have died of arteriosclerotic cardiovascular disease, according to a statement from the Pitkin County coroner’s office on Monday.

A joint inquest between the coroner’s office and the Aspen Police Department concluded that the cause of death was natural.

Berkeley, 76, died in his apartment in Aspen on Saturday and was found there hours before a performance of Mozart’s “The Magic Flute”, which he was conducting, began at the Benedict Musical Tent. The news of his death was announced to the public ahead of the performance, which continued in memory of Berkeley. It was in its 40th season with the festival.



Since the news broke on Saturday night, there has been a wave of tributes honoring Berkeley of Aspen and the international classical music and theater communities, remembered for his passion as a director. stage, mentor and teacher here at Juilliard School and elsewhere, as well as for his sartorial signatures (like shorts and high socks).

“You left your mark in this world, Ed, with a few words, a big backpack and a knowing wink,” opera singer Eva Lukkonen Sullivan wrote on Berkeley’s Facebook page, where hundreds tributes were paid on Sunday and Monday as a result of his death spread. “And you really lived valiantly and taught everyone you met to do the same. I am forever changed by you over these three summers at the Aspen Music Festival; thanks to eternity and back! ”



Adam Cioffari of Maryland Lyric Opera wrote: “It’s hard to think of an individual so completely synonymous with a long-standing institution, but Edward Berkeley and Aspen Opera Theater did. I also find it hard to think of an opera director who has influenced and inspired such a volume of performers and artists over the past decades. The large number of tributes that I have read in recent days bear witness to this. “

And conductor James Gaffigan wrote on Twitter: “I am shocked and very sad to hear this news. From 19 to 22 years old, the Aspen Music Festival was my summer home. My love for opera was born in its brilliant classes. Watching and directing his “opera scenes” at The Wheeler was Aspen’s highlight.


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Litvinenko’s opera oozes hidden evil as Mascagni cheers up

Who knows what Warren Buffett does when he’s not reading company reports? During the famous years when Anthony Bolton was manager of the Fidelity Special Situations fund, he said he found that writing music offered a “balance” in his life and, a few years later, the fruits of that experience. have now arrived on the market.

The first of The life and death of Alexander Litvinenko, with music by Bolton and libretto by Kit Hesketh-Harvey, was the latest offering from this summer’s Grange Park opera festival. Based on the life of the former FSB and KGB officer poisoned with polonium in 2006, he has some good things about him, but they don’t add up.

The story is potentially strong. Here’s a classic lyrical clash between public and private, high-stakes politics and small-scale domestic life, as Litvinenko’s involvement in Russia’s suppression of Chechen independence plays out against scenes written with sympathy from his family life (his widow, Marina, was closely involved with the production of Grange Park).

The two parts of the opera start well. The familiar image of an emaciated Litvinenko lying in a hospital bed is recreated on stage to music that exudes a subtle sense of hidden evil. A noisy re-enactment of the 2002 Moscow theater hostage crisis raises blood pressure.

Gradually, however, a deadly sense of stasis seeps into the opera. A long scene at the Litvinenko’s breakfast table gives rise to hemorrhagic tensions (as Wagner, on the other hand, was adept at shaping his “let’s tell-it-so-far” monologues). The second act is packed with variety – a cabaret-like number, a football hymn rousing the populace, an oligarchs party to deconstructed Tchaikovsky tracks. Eugene Onegin – but neither the music nor the narrative have enough traction. There is a conscientious television documentary inside this opera that is struggling to come out.

The Grange Park opera house put on a good show, however. Director Stephen Medcalf used a creative mix of projections. Adrian Dwyer and Rebecca Bottone plausibly resembled Litvinenko and his wife, and Olivia Ray sang forcefully as a journalist on the crusade Anna Politkovskaya. Stephen Barlow conducted an invisible orchestra prerecorded with a pencil, a strange decision in every way. ★★ ☆☆☆

At Opera Holland Park, an easier challenge was in store. Mascagni Amico Fritz is a confection as light as Italian verism has to offer, a simple sweet and young love story among the cherry trees.

Katie Bird as Suzel and Matteo Lippi as Fritz in l’Amico Fritz at Holland Park Opera © Ali Wright

To make its effect, it only requires a production without intervention and three good singers, who, basically, are present here. Julia Burbach’s production uses the facade of the crumbling Holland House as minimal decor. In the title role, Matteo Lippi exudes Italian vocal flair and Katie Bird sings quite well like her young love, Suzel. Paul Carey Jones adds character as Rabbi David and conductor Beatrice Venezi wield Italian ardor with a light touch. Opera Holland Park has made a name for itself with the Opera Verismo; it is heartwarming to see the company continue its good work. ★★★★ ☆

As of July 31 operahollandpark.com


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Floods in Germany fill the opera house with “a meter and a half” of water

July 19, 2021, 11:29

The opera house in Wuppertal, in western Germany, was filled with a meter and a half of water.

Image: Alamy


The orchestra pit of the Wuppertal opera house is filled with water, as heavy rains and floods devastate German cultural buildings.

An opera house in the North Rhine-Westaphalia region of western Germany has been hit by the flood crisis in the country.

The entire lower stage and orchestra pit of the Wuppertal opera house is now filled with “one and a half meters of water” following heavy rains on the evening of Wednesday 14 July.

At 9 p.m., the Wupper and Bever dams were filling up extremely quickly.

The dams had overflowed by 11 p.m., and that night water began to flood around the opera house.

Officials have expressed fears of “considerable damage to private and public buildings” in the region.

Read more: Trespassers cause ‘significant damage’ to historic theater amid football chaos

The orchestra pit of the Wuppertal Opera House is underwater after flooding in western Germany

The orchestra pit of the Wuppertal Opera House is underwater after flooding in western Germany.

Image: GMW


The Wuppertal Opera House, which opened in 1905, mainly houses opera performances.

It also hosts dance performances by the regional company Tanztheater Wuppertal.

Emptying is currently underway at both dams amid concerns from residents of North Rhine-Westaphalia, which is one of the most affected by the extreme weather conditions.

Heavy rains and flooding claimed the lives of at least 45 people in the state of West Germany.

More than 150 people across Germany have died in the floods, which scientists say occur more frequently due to global warming.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said the world must “be faster in the fight against climate change”.



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A festival of sounds from around the world in Stamford

Music at the Stamford Diversity Festival in August
Music at the Stamford Diversity Festival in August

Stamford Diversity is a free, open-access, family-friendly festival that will take place at the Stamford Recreation Ground from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday August 30, public holiday.

The festival is funded with £ 5,000 from the South Kesteven District Council Community Fund, £ 1,000 from the Stamford City Council grant and money from sales of the Stamford World Cook Book (available for £ 12.95 from All Good Market and Cakes + co in Stamford) which presents recipes from locals of different heritage.

The musical animations are:

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Upcoming music at the Stamford Diversity Festival in August orWjdUJAO8Z0A5L-peea

Peterborough musician Don Saunders was born in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, but has lived there for over 30 years.

Don says, “In the late 90s a popular band gave me three months to learn how to play steel drum for a big concert. I thought it was impossible at the time but I did my best and with the natural rhythm that I inherited from my Caribbean and Irish ancestors, I learned to play the pan and the concert was a success. After the concert, some people said I was the “King of the Dons”, hence my stage name King Don! “

Upcoming music at the Stamford Diversity Festival on August 25th-GlpTJCJNhP4VhX2TP

Peterborough-based musician / producer Moises Sanchez formed Latino Sound in 2010 and has performed at various festivals in and around Peterborough, including the Willow Festival and the Green Meadows Festival in Oundle.

Currently, Latino Sound is the resident group for the eighth consecutive year at Revolucion De Cuba Norwich and Revolution Milton Keynes, Nottingham and Sheffield.

Born to a hippie blues singer and a Trinidadian Rastafarian actor and writer in London, Mellow Baku’s music shares his journey to freedom and healing.

Music at the Stamford Diversity Festival in August

Raised in a cult, at age 5, she escaped to study art and performed throughout the UK and abroad for over a decade.

MUHA offers a new tradition in contemporary Eastern European music, influenced by the multicultural society of the UK, the group is a brilliant live. Entertaining with their musicality through sound from Eastern roots and engaging audiences through a variety of languages ​​and catchy grooves. Combining the melodic beauty of Eastern European folklore, North Indian kathak rhythms, Cuban rhythms and original lyrics, they mesmerize with a musical feast rooted in Slavic tradition but cultivated around the world.

Music at the Stamford Diversity Festival in August

Sura moved to the UK at the age of seventeen, as a percussionist in her brother’s band, the Seckou Keita Quintet. Since arriving in the UK, Sura has performed solo as well as in collaborations, participating in over 500 shows and festivals in over 30 different countries on all continents. He has worked and performed alongside renowned international musicians such as Baaba Maal, Rokia Traoré, Habib Koite and Sona Jobarteh.

His quest to promote traditional music from his cultural roots in The Gambia and his fascination with experimenting with new genres has led him to perform and record in a number of interesting cross-cultural contexts, including collaborations with the great violinist. Anglo-German Maximilian Baillie, Chinese erhu player Ling Peng, Indian sitarist Purbayan Chatterjee, French jazz trumpeter Erik Truffaz, South African opera singer Pumeza, Hispano-Senegalese group Africai, multi-instrumentalist British Pete Josef and an album with the duo

Tāla Tarang embodies a particular chemistry, through a subtle yin-yang of two halves creating a whole. Their repertoire includes original music, folk tunes, classic pop, Bollywood, western and world classical music; it’s a truly unique sound experience.

Tāla Tarang, which means Rhythm Waves, is aptly named because it sums up everything about this duo and their music, as each performance takes both the audience and the artists on a journey; like the oscillations of a wave.

Eleanor met Mendi in 2014 after hearing him during a concert with other world music artists.

Music at the Stamford Diversity Festival in August

Since then, their friendship has grown not only through their mutual love of music, but also their passion for food (Mendi always cooks a curry to fuel their rehearsals!), Travel and the philosophy on family events and that change life. All these shared experiences deeply influence their original compositions.

Tony Nero and Mahemuda (Muni) Arsalani from Peterborough will be among the performers of the festival and in terms of refreshment there will be beers from around the world, Thai, Mexican, Caribbean and Indian cuisine as well as cakes and pancakes.


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Opera theater

Local Carolina Beach singer to perform with Chicago Summer Opera

Maggie Stone (Photo: WWAY)

CAROLINA BEACH, NC (WWAY) —A Carolina Beach native is on her way to Chicago hoping to wow the crowds with her opera singing.

Maggie Stone is a senior at Appalachian State University, pursuing an undergraduate degree in vocal performance.

The 22-year-old soprano opera singer will play her first major role, as Zerlina in Mozart’s Don Giovanni with the Chicago Summer Opera.

“So I got accepted into the Chicago Summer Opera, which is a training program for young opera singers, pre-college, post-graduate, and only professionals, and they train you, and you can sing in. an opera in its own right. . which is really cool!

Maggie says singing has always been a part of her life, and being a part of the Chicago Summer Opera is an opportunity of her life.

“My dad is a musician, so I always had classical music in my life and I grew up doing concerts, and doing more like commercial musical theater, then in college I started studying. classical singing, and I fell in love, “says Peter.

The young opera singer said it will give her the opportunity to learn and grow in her craft, also giving her a chance to impress the crowd.

“I am so excited! that will only launch my career and I will be able to meet singers from all over the world, Stone said. “So it’s like me from North Carolina, Carolina Beach, meeting people from New York, China and Korea. So that’s really cool.

Maggie will be heading to Illinois tomorrow to begin her month-long training program with the Chicago Summer Opera.

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