Sunday 11 October 2015

September on Planet Hugill with Dr Who, Lady Macbeth and Ulysses

Matthew Stiff as Trofonio outside his 'cave' in Salieri's Trofonio's Cave from Bampton Classical Opera
Matthew Stiff as Trofonio outside his 'cave'
in Salieri's Trofonio's Cave from Bampton Classical Opera
Welcome to September on Planet Hugill where we brought the Summer to an end and started a new season.

Beginnings and endings

British Youth Opera in opened their summer season with Janacek's The Cunning Little Vixen, and English National Opera's new season started with a new production of Shostakovich's Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk. Richard Egarr and the Academy of Ancient Music completed their trilogy of Monteverdi operas with Ian Bostridge and Barbara Kozelj in Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria.

A trio of rarities

Bampton Classical Opera brought Salieri's La grotta di Trofonio to St John's Smith Square, Opera Settecento gave the UK premiere of Pergolesi's Adriano in Siria, and Juan Diego Florez starred in Gluck's Orphee et Eurydice at Covent Garden with Hofesh Schechter dance company.

Concerts in various venues

The season opener at the Wigmore Hall, Iestyn Davies, Harry Bicket and the English Concert in Handel, the Choir of Gonville and Caius College in Brazilian music at Kings Place, Anne Boleyn's Song Book from David Skinner and Alamire at Sam Wanamaker Playhouse, the London International A Cappella Choir Competition at St Johns Smith Square and a Festal finale at Hatfield House Chamber Music Competition.

A last couple of Proms

Being Both, Alice Coote, the English Concert & Harry Bicket in Handel, and Elgar's Dream of Gerontius conducted by Simon Rattle with Toby Spence.

Interviews and articles

Technology and class in the development of opera going
The passions are the same - my interview with Christoph Rousset
Building on the Schubert Project: Sholto Kynoch & Oxford Lieder Festival
A new concert hall, a new orchestra: my interview with Laurence Equilbey

Talking and Lecturing

I have been giving my short Introduction to Opera talk to U3A groups with more planned and will be giving an expanded series of lectures at U3A London in Hampstead Town Hall. I will also be giving a series of lectures for The Course in Mayfair, an extended Introduction to Opera course with five two-hour lectures.
On 3 January 2016 I will be giving a pre-concert talk entitled Another vein of nationalism, Czech chamber music in the 19th and 20th centuries to introduce the Wihan Quartet's concert of music by Smetana, Dvorak and Janacek as part of the Conway Hall Sunday Concerts series, directed by Simon Callaghan.

CD's and Books that we have listened to

Opera Acts a new book by Karen Henson, looking at opera singers in the late 19th century.
Jordi Savall conducts Monteverdi's L'Orfeo celebrates 10 years, and a re-issue of Ann Hallenberg in Handel's Siroe. Whilst Handel in Italy, featured three Bevans and Bridget Cunningham's London Early Opera.
There was vivid colour and bravura technique in Mozart & Michael Haydn, from Anneke Scott and Ironwood, and Baroque Inspirations from Hideko Udagawa.
Anne Schwanewilms in Mahler songs with Malcolm Martineau, Ian Venables' song cycle The Song of the Severn with Roderick Williams and Pierre Bartholomee's opera Oedipe sur la Route from La Monnaie in Brussels.
Moments in Time: Red Note Ensemble in music by John McLeod

Credits and looking ahead

Our head image this month is Matthew Stiff as Trofonio outside his 'cave' (aka The Tardis) from Bampton Classical Opera's production of Salieri's La Grotta di Trofonio.
Click on any link to take you to the relevant story on Planet Hugill.
Next week I shall be in Stockholm to cover the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra's concerts of music by Lili and Nadia Boulanger, and the following week I will be in Leeds for Opera North's revival of Janacek's Jenufa.
Finally, the full programme has been released for the Helios Collective's Toi Toi 2015 at the CLF Arts Cafe in Peckham on 28 and 29 October, when they will be premiering my new opera The Genesis of Frankenstein. See my blog for further details.

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