Performances by Bampton Classical Opera are typically noteworthy for two
principal aspects: first, the company repeatedly presents classical-period
rarities which surprise and delight, and second, they do so with wit, energy
and musico-dramatic vision, often employing quirky, fresh translations.
The performance of lieder is a partnership between singer and pianist. In May I heard Julius Drake redeem an indifferent recital by the sheer beauty of his playing. I’ve been listening to him for more than 15 years. He’s a favorite. So I was completely taken by surprise by this recital
The legacy of Ferruccio Busoni (1866-1924) includes some notable compositions, and among them is his unique setting of the Faust story.
A fine-sounding Santa Fe Opera orchestra, excellently conducted by FrÈdÈric
Chaslin, was barely into the haunting, delicate prelude to Act I of La
traviata, when a funeral procession, wet umbrellas unfurled, arrived to
wend its way though a stage full of big grey marble rectangular boxes,
handsomely abstracted tomb shapes, soon to be the courtesan Violetta
ValÈry’s destination. So much for the Prelude to Act I.
Faust, OpÈra en cinq actes.