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Die Liebe der Danae at the Salzburg Festival 2016

Helmut Pitsch

The Love of Danae is one of Richard Strauss masterpieces of the later period. He himself could not participate to the world premier in 1952 at the Salzburg Festival, after the original date in 1944 was cancelled at the same place due to the failed attack of Hitler. The opera in three acts is defined by the composer as a comedy of Greek mythology and consists of fine romantic music, in one big flow, missing arias or characteristic passages. So far, this opera did not achieve similar...

Die Zauberflöte : A tale, at last

Xavier Pujol

This Magic Flute’s extraordinary production coming from Berlin’s Komische Oper will remain without any doubt a milestone, a reference point in the long history of stagings of this great Mozartian title. The production, which was seen in Madrid this present season and is now visiting Barcelona after having toured with big success through many great theatres, stands out for its originality and pertinence of concept as well as for its powerful visual impact. At last, The Magic...

Belcanto voices : I Puritani at Teatro Real

Jorge Binaghi

As an extra gift we had the new critical edition by Fabrizio della Seta (with certain changes). Thus the roles of Enrichetta and –more- Arturo, but also those of Riccardo and Elvira become more alive (a pity that they didn’t include the final rondo written for Malibran, and more since here we had a real chance). Of course the risks of a still less dramatic structure –a problem with this opera since its first performance- are more evident, but the artistic interest of this...

La Juive at the Bavarian State Opera, Munich

Helmut Pitsch

It is still a rare possibility to assist to this opera, even if it was once a big success in the whole Europe after its world premiere in Paris 1835. The subject of this Grande Opera seems more than actual and modern again. It demonstrates the fight between religions, prosecution and religious discrimination, linked with the fate of two strong competing men opposed and confronted by fatal love, faith power and a virtuous girl. It is a dark story with a tragic end : dark and...

An only correct Bohème is always a certain triumph

Xavier Pujol

For his version of La Bohème, created in 2009 for the English National  Opera and now shown at Liceu, Sir Jonathan Miller chose Paris in the thirties as its visual referent, the Paris that Cartier Bresson and Brassaï immortalised through photography. This is not the first time that the British director turns to well-known iconographic referents to visually frame an opera title. In 1982 he presented an inspired “mafia” Rigolettoset in Manhattan that became one...

Der Rosenkavalier at La Scala

Raffaele Mellace

Quite remarkably, as demanding as this opera is, and outside a German-speaking country, Der Rosenkavalier has recently become fixture of La Scala seasons, now appearing in its third production within the last 13 years. This time, the deep and yet lighthearted, bittersweet comedy turned out again a favorite of the Milanese audience, which had been graced with a very early staging back in March 1911, barely six weeks after the Dresden world premiere. Harry Kupfer, former director of the...

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