Give us More Meyerbeer

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lennygoran
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Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sat Apr 29, 2017 6:05 am

Yes as I`ve advocated for years! Len


https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/28/arts ... ctionfront

maestrob
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by maestrob » Sat Apr 29, 2017 12:55 pm

Hi, Len!

Meyerbeer is problematic for me. Casting is the main problem, as it is for Rossini, and some of Meyerbeer's writing for the voice is unkind, unlike Verdi or Wagner. I've not studied any of Meyerbeer's scores,but in general I like what I hear, and would appreciate hearing more. I only know L'Aricaine from the production with Domingo and Bumbry at San Francisco Opera, and the more recent Robert le Diable with Brian Hymel, which was extraordinary.

Looking forward to more.......

John F
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by John F » Sat Apr 29, 2017 1:13 pm

The outright vulgarity of some of Meyerbeer's music may not be why his operas have all but vanished from the present-day repertoire, but it's an obstacle to their revival. Another is those operas' demands for spectacle on the grandest scale, as originally provided by the Paris Opéra; done on the cheap, as in the Met's "Le Prophète" in the 1970s, their weakness is exposed. Other than that, no Meyerbeer opera has been performed at the Met since 1933 - "L'Africaine" - and as no powerful singer or conductor today has shown any interest in pushing for a Meyerbeer revival, that seems to be that.
John Francis

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sat Apr 29, 2017 2:34 pm

maestrob wrote:
Sat Apr 29, 2017 12:55 pm
Hi, Len!

Meyerbeer is problematic for me. Casting is the main problem, as it is for Rossini, and some of Meyerbeer's writing for the voice is unkind, unlike Verdi or Wagner. I've not studied any of Meyerbeer's scores,but in general I like what I hear, and would appreciate hearing more. I only know L'Aricaine from the production with Domingo and Bumbry at San Francisco Opera, and the more recent Robert le Diable with Brian Hymel, which was extraordinary.

Looking forward to more.......
Brian I think a singer like bryan hymel could handle it! Len

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sat Apr 29, 2017 2:38 pm

John F wrote:
Sat Apr 29, 2017 1:13 pm
The outright vulgarity of some of Meyerbeer's music may not be why his operas have all but vanished from the present-day repertoire, but it's an obstacle to their revival. Another is those operas' demands for spectacle on the grandest scale, as originally provided by the Paris Opéra; done on the cheap, as in the Met's "Le Prophète" in the 1970s, their weakness is exposed. Other than that, no Meyerbeer opera has been performed at the Met since 1933 - "L'Africaine" - and as no powerful singer or conductor today has shown any interest in pushing for a Meyerbeer revival, that seems to be that.

I`m all for spectacle-today we saw azalea woods down here in delaware at winterthur at top peak bloom conditions-I like my gardens and my operas done as spectacularly as possible-maybe bring in lepage! Len [fleeing]

jserraglio
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by jserraglio » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:16 am

1998-2013: All have been either broadcast or released on disk:

1. Meyerbeer_Les Huguenots_Marc Minkowski-Munt Brussels 2011
2. Robert Le Diable_Daniel Oren-ROH CG London 2012
3. Les Huguenots_Leon Botstein-ASO Bard Summerscape 2009
4. Margherita d'Anjou_David Parry-LPO 2003
5. Il Crociato in Egitto_David Parry-RPO 1998
6. L'Africaine_Emmanuel Villaume-Teatro La Fenice 2013

2014-2017: a Meyerbeer revival is underway in Germany:

7. Dinorah_Enrique Mazzola-Deutsche Oper Berlin 2014
8. Vasco da Gama (L'Africaine)_Enrique Mazzola-Deutsche Oper Berlin 2015
9. Les Huguenots_Michele Mariotti-Deutsche Oper Berlin 2016
10. Le Prophète” (Enrique Mazzola-Deutsche Oper Berlin) will be staged in 2017-18

https://www.nytimes.com/2015/08/26/arts ... rbeer.html
Last edited by jserraglio on Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:01 am, edited 2 times in total.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:27 am

Now let`s get them up there on the opera stage! Len

jserraglio
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by jserraglio » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:29 am

I believe all but the two led by David Parry were staged: if it's not at the Met, it still counts, doesn't it?. I have recordings of of most of these. Now I have to listen to all of them. The 2011 Minkowski is excellent. I am very interested in the cycle led by Enrique Mazzola and Michele Mariotti and have all three of their broadcast recordings.
Last edited by jserraglio on Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:02 am, edited 2 times in total.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:36 am

That`s all well and good but how long ago and how often and how close to where I can conveniently get to them-opera delaware is doing il tritico next april-love the opera but would have preferred they do something less well known. Len

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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by jserraglio » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:41 am

Many of the Meyerbeer broadcasts are recent.The DOB's cycle is staging one work per year.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:17 am

What is DOB? It`s not broadcasts I`m looking for-it`s live full scale opera performances I`m after. Len

jserraglio
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by jserraglio » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:20 am

Deutsche Oper Berlin. They stage exactly one more Meyerbeer opera per year than the Met does. But they are too recent to be on YouTube yet. https://www.deutscheoperberlin.de/en_EN ... s.13754674
from the NYT article linked above: According to the website Operabase, Wagner is the fourth most frequently performed composer, while Meyerbeer ranks at number 119. But a growing interest has taken hold in Germany, not least because of the new critical edition. Over the past 15 years, there have been performances of his major works in small cities like Kiel, Braunschweig and Karlsruhe. Mr. Königsdorf, the dramaturge, hopes that the Deutsche Oper’s cycle will finally cement Meyerbeer’s place in the repertory alongside Wagner and Verdi, adding that, in an epoch of a “more or less united Europe,”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Thh5e7u_I-M


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Iw6w9gw76s
Last edited by jserraglio on Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:37 am, edited 2 times in total.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:34 am

Thanks-problem berlin is not so easy for me to come and go to-another problem could be that they do operas in a eurotrashy sort of way. Len

jserraglio
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by jserraglio » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:39 am

Judge by production stills for Les Hugs? https://www.deutscheoperberlin.de/en_EN ... s.13754674


Deutsche Oper Berlin, 20-11-2016
Chor und Orchester der Deutschen Oper Berlin
Leitung: Michele Mariotti

Juan Diego Flórez - Raoul von Nangis
Olesya Golovneva - Valentine
Patrizia Ciofi - Marguerite von Valois
Derek Welton - Graf von Saint-Bris
Marc Barrard - Graf von Nevers
Irene Roberts - Urbain
Andrew Dickinson - Cossé
James Kryshak - Tavannes, 1. Mönch
John Carpenter - Méru, 2. Mönch
Stephen Bronk - de Retz,3. Mönch
Alexei Botnarciuc - Thoré,Maurevert
Ante Jerkunica - Marcel
Robert Watson - Bois-Rosé
Ben Wager - Ein Nachtwächter
Last edited by jserraglio on Sun Apr 30, 2017 9:01 am, edited 3 times in total.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:51 am

What a great slide show-did you put that together yourself or is there a special website for slide shows like that. To me it looks kind of eurotrashy but if I lived near berlin I might give it a go. Len

John F
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by John F » Sun Apr 30, 2017 11:47 am

The Deutsche Oper Berlin's web site says this about its piling on of Meyerbeer operas: "LES HUGUENOTS is the central work in the Deutsche Oper’s Meyerbeer cycle, which presents new theatrical productions of the key works of Berlin’s greatest ever composer." Meyerbeer was indeed born in Berlin, and it may be that no other composer of consequence has ever been born there. But that's like saying James Buchanan is Pennsylvania's greatest ever president of the United States. It's true, but only because he's the only president born there; less parochially, Buchanan is one of the worst presidents we've ever had. Berlin's second opera house has a parochial reason to celebrate its local son, aided by a hefty subsidy from the city of Berlin. Otherwise it doesn't signify.

There's a long article in today's NY Times about Meyerbeer, focusing on the DOB cycle and a new CD of Meyerbeer arias by Diana Damrau. Perhaps not surprisingly, Woolfe has little to say about the quality of Meyerbeer's music, focusing instead on his operas' theatrical aspects. But read it for yourselves.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/28/arts ... sance.html
John Francis

absinthe
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by absinthe » Sun Apr 30, 2017 4:46 pm

Long overdue that Semiramide was given a serious try. Riedel can manage the part
moderately well with Bonynge but the recording has a number of cuts (not detailed) so one has to take what's there and lump it. It's a very difficult part by all accounts premièred bu Carolina Bassi, at one point a contralto, the next a high soprano - a very long tessitura.

I wish. I love his operas. Opera Rara does him real justice but now with reduced funding I doubt they'd have a shot at this one. I also doubt any live performance would be put on in London.

.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:49 pm

John F wrote:
Sun Apr 30, 2017 11:47 am
There's a long article in today's NY Times about Meyerbeer, focusing on the DOB cycle and a new CD of Meyerbeer arias by Diana Damrau.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/28/arts ... sance.html
This is the same article I began the thread with--why repeat it? I don't accept that Buchanan being a bad president is analogous to Meyerbeer being a wonderful opera composer. Regards, Len

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Mon May 01, 2017 6:40 am

jserraglio wrote:
Sun Apr 30, 2017 8:39 am
Judge by production stills for Les Hugs?
Now I found a review of their Vasco da Gama-this is just the kind of updating and gimmickry I don't go for-any chance you can find a slide show of this one? Regards, Len


Review: Meyerbeer’s ‘Vasco Da Gama’ at Deutsche Oper Berlin

By GEORGE LOOMIS OCT. 21, 2015


BERLIN — Can the massive grand operas of Giacomo Meyerbeer speak to a modern audience? That the question has been posed for so many years while the operas themselves have been neglected may suggest a negative answer. Yet how can we write off a composer who stood at the pinnacle of the opera world for more than three decades of the 19th century, when some of the most enduring works of the modern repertoire were created?

Perhaps the Deutsche Oper Berlin, which has made a commitment to Meyerbeer no other house has approached, will give us an answer. This month it unveiled a new production of “L’Africaine” billed as “Vasco da Gama,” which, according to Jürgen Schläger, who prepared a new critical edition of the score, was the title favored by Meyerbeer and his librettist, Eugène Scribe. Two more of Meyerbeer’s French grand operas are planned here.

A passion for the spectacular was in Meyerbeer’s blood. Even his early Italian operas have big embarkation scenes and grand processions. Paris, where visual spectacle was embedded in the opera tradition, offered him ideal conditions. Born in Berlin to a wealthy banking family, Meyerbeer allowed his operas long gestation periods, and the longer the wait, the more the public craved them. As Berlioz put it, Meyerbeer “was not only lucky to have talent,” he also had “a talent for being lucky.”

His luck survived him, but since the 1930s his operas have seen only sporadic revivals, typically with ruinous cuts. The Deutsche Oper has put an end to that. Although judicious cuts, including the ballet, have been made, the running time for “Vasco da Gama” approaches five hours.

As you might guess, the opera deals with the Portuguese explorer’s voyages of discovery and embraces the kind of cultural clashes that French grand operas thrive on. Here, Europe is set against the East Indies. Dashing figure that he is, Vasco has a lover in each camp — Inès, his Portuguese sweetheart, and Sélika, an Indian princess — and has difficulty choosing between them. Ultimately Inès wins out, while Sélika chooses suicide by breathing the toxic fumes of the manchineel tree.

The production by Vera Nemirova treats the story lucidly but does not resist injecting some unwanted contemporary touches, especially regarding religious fanaticism. Sélika is forced to participate in a Christian ceremony wearing clerical garb, and later, in a gratuitous episode, Nélusko, a treacherous compatriot of Sélika, rapes a nun.


Jens Kilian’s décor, which relies heavily on decorative sails and a circular map showing the areas of Vasco’s travels, is more tasteful than extravagant, but the opera’s main scenic coup — the wreck engineered by Nélusko of a Portuguese ship on a reef — is disappointingly done. At Nélusko’s command, Indians come on board and subdue passengers and crew, but the ship suffers no visible damage. Moments later the Indians mow down the Portuguese with machine guns, a departure from the libretto, which has the killings take place later and off stage.

A more serious problem stems from Meyerbeer’s death in 1864, a year before the opera’s premiere, which prevented him from applying finishing touches. Changes during rehearsal were routine at the Paris Opera and you can bet that Meyerbeer would have made some.

And the Deutsche Opera’s “Vasco da Gama” seems to move at a slower pace than other Meyerbeer operas. The conductor, Enrique Mazzola, though alert to subtleties of detail, could have given the score more rhythmic backbone. Still, the work evoked a rare form of operatic grandeur. And the music — often beautiful, rarely formulaic, occasionally exotic and consistently apt dramatically — spoke with a distinctive voice. The audience clearly took to it.


Like other tenor leads in Meyerbeer, Vasco is slightly crazed. Obsessed with achieving immortality, he extols the dazzling beauty of the new-found land around him in his famous aria “O paradis,” even as his countrymen have just been slaughtered. Heading a strong cast, Roberto Alagna sings Vasco stirringly and invests him with swagger. Sophie Koch’s plush mezzo-soprano thrives on the challenges of Sélika’s music, and Nino Machaidze sings Inès with iridescent tones. Markus Brück brings a firm baritone and ample menace to Nélusko.

“Vasco da Gama” gets a mixed report, then, but whets the appetite for Meyerbeer’s “Les Huguenots” next season.

No discussion of Meyerbeer would be complete without mentioning his chief detractor, Richard Wagner, whose virulent attacks — motivated by anti-Semitism, jealousy or self-promotion — are sometimes cited as reasons for Meyerbeer’s fall from popularity. Yet “Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg,” in a new production at the Berlin State Opera, offers a choice example of how he influenced Wagner’s stagecraft, if not his music. The brawl in Act 2 of “Meistersinger” was clearly inspired by the tensions between Catholics and Protestants on the streets of Paris in Act 3 of “Les Huguenots,” which even includes a counterpart to Wagner’s Night Watchman.

The brawl is unusually brutal in Andrea Moses’s staging, but otherwise she has an admirably light touch when dealing with the opera’s nationalism in the context of today’s prosperous, nonbelligerent Germany: When the poet-shoemaker Hans Sachs delivers his unsettling encomium to “holy German art,” cheering rightwing demonstrators among the assembled Nuremberg populace are quietly led away.

Wolfgang Koch is a splendid Sachs, especially touching in his monologue about why the knight Walther’s new style of singing so displeases the Meistersingers. In a sense, the popular tenor Klaus Florian Vogt is the ideal singer for Walther: His crooning style represents something unorthodox, which is why the tenor remains controversial among today’s purists. Julia Kleiter is a lovely, clear-voiced Eva, and while Eva is destined for Walther, her scenes of gentle flirtation with Sachs are high points. Markus Werba delivers Beckmesser’s botched entry in the song contest so stylishly that he deserves at least an honorable mention. Several of the Meistersingers are amiably portrayed in cameos by veteran Wagner performers and everything comes together handsomely under Daniel Barenboim’s sometimes impetuous leadership.

https://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/22/arts ... .html?_r=0

jserraglio
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by jserraglio » Mon May 01, 2017 9:42 am

Could not locate. Slideshow from last year evidently taken down. Google "vasco da gama deutsche oper production stills" and you will find a few pics. I listened to Deutsche Oper's Huguenots yesterday and like it a lot. Florez and Ciofi.

Pretty good for a provincial opera house of the second rank that performs this composer only because he was the sole noteworthy composer Berlin ever produced.
Last edited by jserraglio on Mon May 01, 2017 10:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Mon May 01, 2017 10:05 am

jserraglio wrote:
Mon May 01, 2017 9:42 am
Could not locate.
Thanks for your efforts-found these two for Vasco De Gama[L'Africaine]-doesn't give me much confidence. Regards, Len :(

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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by Lance » Mon May 01, 2017 2:52 pm

Ah, DEBORAH RIEDEL! What a soprano and a pity she died so young at age 50. I wish she had recorded more of anything. At times, a serious likeness to Dame Joan Sutherland. I have featured Riedel on several radio programs always to enthusiastic responses from listeners.
absinthe wrote:
Sun Apr 30, 2017 4:46 pm
Long overdue that Semiramide was given a serious try. Riedel can manage the part
moderately well with Bonynge but the recording has a number of cuts (not detailed) so one has to take what's there and lump it. It's a very difficult part by all accounts premièred bu Carolina Bassi, at one point a contralto, the next a high soprano - a very long tessitura.

I wish. I love his operas. Opera Rara does him real justice but now with reduced funding I doubt they'd have a shot at this one. I also doubt any live performance would be put on in London.

.
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THEHORN
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by THEHORN » Tue May 02, 2017 5:11 pm

There's a DVD of Meyerbeer's oddball opera "Dinorah " from the opera house in Compiegne, France several years ago . This is an opera which features goats, yes coats in the cast, as the title character is a shepherdess .
The so-called "shadow aria " of Dinorah used to be a showpiece for coloratura sopranos longago, and there's a famous recording of it by the late Dame Joan Sutherland .
The production in the DVD features people dressed up as goats . I borrowed it from Netflix a couple of years ago, and was surprised at how much fun it was .

John F
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by John F » Wed May 03, 2017 6:56 am

That's goats, not coats - unique in opera, surely.
John Francis

lennygoran
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Re: Give us More Meyerbeer

Post by lennygoran » Wed May 03, 2017 7:43 am

John F wrote:
Wed May 03, 2017 6:56 am
That's goats, not coats - unique in opera, surely.
That's right-I knew Puccini and Meyerbeer-you're no Puccini! Regards, Len [fleeing] :lol:


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