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Past Production Reviews

4
Violetter Schnee, Furrer
D: Claus Guth
C: Matthias Pintscher
World Premiere
Violetter Schnee

Die ästhetische Geschlossenheit dieser Opernnovität ist faszinierend. Fluchtwege bleiben hier nur ins Assoziative. So wie für das halbe Dutzend Protagonisten auf der Bühne der frisch renovierten Lindenoper. Die hat jetzt mit Beat Furrers Violetter Schnee eine in jeder Hinsicht exquisite Uraufführung zu verbuchen. Der österreichische Dramatiker Händl Klaus, der mit Furrer schon bei dessen Wüstenbuch zusammenarbeitete, hat eine Art von Weltuntergangspoesie in Librettoform gebracht, die von Vladimir Sorokin Erzählung, Andrei Tarkowski Solaris, Lars von Triers Melancholia und Peter Brueghel Winterbild Jäger im Schnee inspiriert ist. Die Musiksprache des Schweizer Ernst-von-Siemens-Preisträgers lässt sie in ihrem dunklen Glanz gleichsam aufleuchten. Die Musik klingt wie fallender Schnee, ist durchsetzt von Fanalklängen, scheppert, erstirbt.

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13 January 2019www.omm.deRoberto Becker
Bérénice, Jarrell
D: Claus Guth
C: Philippe Jordan
World Premiere
Bérénice

Jarrell, who created his own libretto, gave much thought to the setting of the French language and Racine’s alexandrines; he created a text that was free of the strict classical form of the language while retaining the sense of the original. The libretto for the ninety-minute work, presented in four sequences, was generally clear and apt, combining natural speech rhythms with more elaborate vocal flourishes for musical emphasis and some electronic murmurings from a pre-recorded chorus. There was warmth and a sustained atmosphere of reflective grief in the strings at the opening of the orchestral score, powerfully conducted by Jordan. Guth created athletic and stylized movement for the singers against Christian Schmidt’s classical-style three-room set. As the opera ended, there was a palpable sense of emptiness and despair as the three central characters each ended up in a state of glacial solitude. Racine’s final “hélas” produced a tragic orchestral sigh before a warm reception from the capacity audience

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29 September 2018www.operanews.comStephen J. Mudge
The sacrifice of Bérénice: a long break-up at the Opéra Garnier in Paris

In the title role, the splendid Barbara Hannigan embodies the voice of passion and gives free rein to her emotions with agile and voluble phrasing. The final scene enlightens her personality in a new way, her singing seeming constrained as soon as she submits to the demands of duty. Conversely, Bo Skovhus's majestic Titus expresses himself in long and monotone phrases, his resignation expressed by rigidity of voice. But at times, the emperor allows emotion to swamp him: at this point, the singer shows his most wonderful effects: cries of distress and heavy-breathed sighs. In the pit orchestral profusion heightens the monotony of the voices, its timbre carefully balanced under the baton of Philippe Jordan. Contrasting atmostpheres flow from moving harmonic fields, the breaking of waves or nervous silences that match the dramatic meanderings. None the less, this carefully crafted texture is made from well-proven effects: don't expect the unexpected in this opera. If one's interest is in novel sonic experiences, what's lacking here is the prophetic exaltation which made Jarrell's Cassandre such a success. None the less, the conventionality of the music and the breathlessness of the libretto do not eclipse the merits of a high quality production, served by an unimpeachable cast.

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01 October 2018bachtrack.comLouise Boisselier
Tristan und Isolde, Wagner, Richard
D: Claus GuthArturo Gama
C: Gianandrea Noseda
Tristan returns in triumph to the Teatro Regio

tage director Claus Guth focused on the passionate love story between the two, and highlighted its intimate facet by setting the action in a 19th century high-middle class apartment. Isolde wakes up in the morning in her bedroom to the nicely sung outside melody, and asks to see Tristan. The sets, designed by Christian Schmidt (who also took care of the costumes), featured a revolving structure that showed the elegantly furnished rooms of the apartment. In this way, the director was able to add some action to this otherwise quite static opera. Five hours has elapsed, and while part of the audience had left the house earlier, there were still enough spectators left to pay a big tribute of applause to all the cast members, who had accomplished the deed of bringing back Wagner’s masterpiece to Turin after a ten-year absence. And this was indeed deserved. For Maestro Gianandrea Noseda this was the first Tristan. The conductor prepared with great care for this debut, and worked out all the details with the orchestra of the Teatro Regio, which played with commitment and produced a compact, vibrant sound. The chorus, instructed by Claudio Fenoglio, contributed to the success of the performance.

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15 October 2017theoperacritic.comSilvia Luraghi

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