Tuesday 2 April 2013

In case you missed it - March on Planet Hugill

March on Planet Hugill opened in modern day Seville with the Guildhall School of Music and Drama's production of Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro. We then moved to Hackney for English Touring Opera's new production of Cosi fan tutte with Laura Mitchell and Kitty Whately. Still in Hackney, ETO also gave the UK's first professional stage performance of Donizetti's L'Assedio di Calais.
More rare opera, Lully's Phaeton made a welcome appearance at the Barbican Centre, and Handel'sImeneo, his penultimate opera, was performed at the London Handel Festival.
Second Movement presented another Rough for Opera, an absorbing evening of operatic work in progress and discussions about new opera. Another new opera, this time George Benjamin's masterpiece Written on Skin, received its UK premiered at Covent Garden.
Recitals included Louise Alder, the inaugural Kiri te Kanawa scholar at the Royal College of Music, and flautist Linda Chatterton performing music by Brian Ciach and Ailis Ni Riain.
The Tallis Scholars celebrated their 40th anniversary with a concert at St. Paul's Cathedral with premieres by Gabriel Jackson and Eric Whitacre and distinguished mezzo-soprano Sarah Walker celebrated her 70th birthday at Wigmore Hall in the company of Graham Johnson, Laura Mitchell, Kitty Whately and Stephan Loges
Easter Week came in the form of penitential music by Byrd and his contemporaries from Stile Antico at Wigmore Hall and Tenebrae with Chapelle du Roi at St John's Smith Square.
Articles included Echoes of an earlier age, listening to Adelina Patti and looking at how singing has changed. And I attended a fascinating study day on opera in the Classical period.
Our guest reviewer Hilary attended the launch of Alexander Levine's Divine Liturgy, helped the Schubert Ensemble celebrate their 30th anniversary and heard the London Symphony Orchestra premiere Eloise Nancie Glynn's new work
Dame Felicity Lott and Graham Johnson's new DVD of Poulenc's La Voix Humaine was launched in fine style at the Institut Francais.
Tallis Scholars released a digital download of Eric Whitacre's Sainte-Chapelle, written for their 40th anniversary.
CD reviews included George Benjamin's outstanding Written on Skin, mysterious choral music byHaflidi Hallgrimsson and Stephen McNeff's lovely Gabriele D'Annunzio settings Madrigale dell'Estate.
Ann Hallenberg and Il Complesso Barocco have disc of undeservedly lesser known Handel ariasUnknown Handel, and Luke Green and Benjamin Hulett have recorded the Amoretti by Handel's contemporary Maurice Greene. Russian soprano Julia Lezhneva impressed in her debut disc of Handel, Mozart, Vivaldi and Porpora motets. The Vivat label has released its second disc, of Couperin's Trois Lecons de Tenebres.
Alexander Levine's Divine Liturgy was released on disc. A suite of Joby Talbot's music for the balletAlice in Wonderland made a delightful disc. On the lighter side, there was Greg Kallor's new disc, A Single Noon.
Our disc of the month music be Alice Coote and Julius Drake's hauntingly intense performance of Schubert's Die Winterreise on Wigmore Hall Live.

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