Welcome to July on Planet Hugill, rather later than usual because we have been busy visiting Santa Fe, Iceland and Tallinn (of which more in next month's newsletter). If you would like to receive this newsletter in your inbox each month then sign up to our mailing list:
July saw the opera festival season continue in earnest and we opened with Glyndebourne, where we were at home with the beautiful people with Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro, and we heard two role debuts with Joyce DiDonata and Vittorio Grigolo in Werther at Covent Garden. There was a remarkable swansong, with Tristan und Isolde, the last performance of Grange Park Opera at Northington Grange.
At Opera Holland Park there was sparkle and discipline in Strauss's Die Fledermaus with husband and wife team Ben Johnson and Susannah Hurrell, and there were sylvan delights in Gounod's La Colombe at West Green Opera.
At the Buxton Festival
Not just Fidelio-lite, we heard Beethoven's original Leonore, whilst Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi was classic yet modern, and there was a visual and aural feast in Handel's Tamerlano, plus Gemma Lois Summerfield in recital.
A brace of Rossinis
La Cenerentola was seriously comic at Opera Holland Park, whilst Rossini's Barber saw Glyndebourne at the BBC Proms.
London English Song Festival's Songs of the Somme at Wilton's Music Hall, 20th century accordion music with Bartosz Glowacki at the Wallace Collection.
This month's interviews
Double the energy: I talked to Ella Marchment and Leo Geyer about Constella Opera Ballet. The complete Schumann and more: I chatted to Sholto Kynoch about the 2016 Oxford Lieder Festival. Divine comedies: I chatted to, Gilly French and Jeremy Gray, the artistic directors of Bampton Classical Opera.
Scenes from the End: I talked to composer Jonathan Woolgar about his new solo piece for soprano Heloise Werner. I chatted to soprano Elizabeth Llewellyn as she prepares for her role debut as Tosca.
Our trip to the Dresden Music Festival in May yielded to articles on the Culture Trip website. A journey through time at Glashütte's German Watch Museum, and the Mathematisch-Physikalischer Salon in Dresden.
I will be giving the pre-concert talk at St John's Smith Square on 23 September 2016 when the pianist Kimiko Ishizaka performs Bach's The Art of Fugue with the UK premiere of her new completion of the work. Further ahead I will be back at Conway Hall for a pre-concert talk in November as well as continuing my series of opera talks with U3A groups
CD reviews▪ Ancient music from the Scottish Highlands
▪ Chorus vel organa: music from the lost palace of Westminster
▪ Mozart arrange Lachnith, Les Mystères d'Isis
▪ Mozart & Mendelssohn piano concertos with Danae Dörken
▪ Schubert's youthful miller with Robert Murray
▪ Wolf-Ferrari's I gioielli della Madonna, on disc at last (1)
▪ Carlisle Floyd's Wuthering Heights, on disc at last (2)
▪ Mieczyslaw Weinberg's sonatas for solo violin with Linus Roth
▪ Exploring Heine: Benjamin Appl & James Baillieu in Schumann, Schubert & more
▪ Nocturnal variations, Ruby Hughes and Joseph Middleton in Schubert, Berg, Britten and Mahler
▪ Clara Sanabras A Hum About The Ears
This month's header image is Paul Nilon & Simeon John-Wake in Handel's Tamerlano at the Buxton Festival, photo Robert Workman.
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