The novels of Sinclair Lewis once shot across the American literary skies like comets, alarming and fascinating readers of that era, but their tails didn’t extend far behind them.
Irish composer Gerald Barry’s opera The Importance of Being Earnest
premieres at the Barbican, London on April 26th. It is a joint commission between the Barbican and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.
Once the province of only the most dedicated opera fanatics, mid-20th century recordings of privately taped live performances have become more widely available.
For sixty years, the Chelsea Opera Group has adorned London opera life. It doesn’t do mass market, but focuses on unusual and obscure repertoire. This audience comes for the music!
Flute players in opera orchestra around the world must look forward to the frequent appearances of Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor, knowing that while the stage spotlight in the mad scene will be on the soprano, the orchestral spotlight will be on their instrument.
The performance at the Wigmore Hall of Schubert’s Die schˆne M¸llerin by Florian Boesch and Malcolm Martineau was outstanding. Over several decades, I’ve heard hundreds of performances, but this was exceptionally perceptive.
“Opera is an emotional fitness centre”, says Kasper Holten, new Director of Opera, announcing the Royal Opera House 2012-13 season which mixes daring with prudence.
The Barbican’s English oratorio series now reaches the twentieth century, with Tippett’s A Child of Our Time, though it will step back to The Dream of Gerontius next month.
The Los Angeles Opera, anticipating Benjamin Britten’s centennial gave
the composer, as well as its patrons, an early birthday present of performances
of his charming comic opera, Albert Herring.