Tuesday 8 July 2014

In case you missed it - June on Planet Hugill

Claire Rutter in Grange Park Opera's production of Verdi's La Traviata (photo credit Robert Workman).

Opera Openings

Grange Park Opera opened with a new production of Verdi's La Traviata with Claire Rutter in the title role, and continued with Britten's Peter Grimes and Massenet's Don Quichotte.
Opera Holland Park's new season started with Puccini's La Fanciulla de West and continued with their young artists performance of Rossini's Il barbiere di Siviglia

Welcome rarities sighted

At ENO, Berlioz's Benvenuto Cellini made a welcome appearance on the London stage in Terry Gilliam's astonishing new production. Whilst at Covent Garden Poulenc's Carmelites made an equally welcome return to the Royal Opera House stage. Chelsea Opera Group gave us a chance to hear Verdi's Stifelio. Another rarity was Charpentier's La descente d'Orphee from the Early Opera Company. Puccini's Manon Lescaut made its first appearance on the Covent Garden stage for 30 years with Jonas Kaufmann as Des Grieux. Another rarity, this time at the Royal College of Music was Rossini's La Gazzetta.

More of the Dresden Music Festival

Coverage of our visit to the Dresden Music Festival continued with an interview with artistic director Jan Vogler,, the New York group The Knights in concert and the festival's innovative young artists scheme Boheme2020. My article about Dresden and the festival also appeared on the Culture Trip website.

Musical encounters

Other interviews included an encounter with Nelly Miricioiu to talk about her assumption of the role of Lina in Verdi's Stifelio, and interview which we continued at our second encounter. I also had an email interview with Spanish composer Jorge Grundman to talk about the new recording of his companion piece to Haydn's Seven Last Words.

Concert re-inventions

In concert, we heard John Tomlinson work his inimitable magic on Schubert's Die Winterreise. At the South Bank the Venezuelan's were in residence with the Teresa Carreno Youth Orchestra. Carolyn Sampson, Robert King and the King's concert re-invented Britten's Les Illuminations, and Iestyn Davies stunned with his accounts of Bach cantatas. The Salomon Orchestra helped celebrate the Panufnik centenary.

From Our Correspondents

Our correspondent Hilary saw Birtwistle's Yan Tan Tethera; she helped London English Song Festival celebrate Judith Weir's birthday and commemorate the Great War. She saw Gestalt Opera perform The Madness of Clive and heard the Aurora Orchestra at King's Place. At ENO she fell in love with the revival of Bizet's The Pearl Fishers
Our guest reviewer Jill Barlow went to the Globe to review Alex Baranowski's music for The Last Days of Troy.

Hilary in Spitalfields

Hilary also went to a group of events at the Spitalfields Festival, where she spend the Night at the Museum, saw The Voice and the Lens, felt No Nights Dark Enough and experienced Death Actually.

CD's heard

CD's we listened to included the young Russian bass, Ildar Abdrazakov impressed in his first disc of Russian arias, tenor Lawrence Brownlee dazzled in his disc of Rossini arias and Les Arts Florissants took us to the Jardin de Monsieur Rameau. Handel's Duetti da Camera made a rare occurrence on disc and I made the welcome acquaintance of Purcell's Ten Sonatas in Four Parts. Another interesting new acquaintance was a lively new recording of Handel's Siroe.
We also heard a disc from clarinettist composer Helen Habershon, helped the Tallis Scholars revisit their 1980's recording of John Tavener's music, and Anonymous 4's disc Marie e Marion returned to the Montpellier codex.
Andrzej Panufnik's centenary brought forth discs of his music paired with that of his daughter, and Clare Hammond in his solo piano music. Whilst a new disc of Prokofiev's violin sonatas impressed greatly.


Our header photo this month is Claire Rutter in Grange Park Opera's production of Verdi's La Traviata (photo credit Robert Workman).

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