Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Amsterdam Opera and Ballet plays the "trademark" game, will present Gurre-Lieder

Apparently, trademark and brand matter for arts organizations, especially performance centers, and overseas.  In Amsterdam, the Dutch equivalent of our Kennedy Center will be known as the Dutch National Opera and Ballet, according to this news story.
The Center has an impressive schedule
In September, it will present Arnold Schoenberg’s Gurre-Lieder (reviewed here Feb. 22, 2012), and the Gounod Faust  (the Berlioz “Damnation of Faust” is covered here Jan. 21, 2009). I’m pretty sure that I have rented a DVD of Gounod’s Faust – some years ago; right now I can’t find my review. Who can forget the lilting aria melody at the end, and the chorus as Christ rises (some versions have the guillotine and coffin).

It will present Verdi’s Falstaff, based on Shakespeare’s “The Merry Wives of Windsor” in June.  I have an RCA CD of an RCA Italiana performance by Sir Georg Solti from 1964, a bit tinny.  Verdi has a way of making the fast, perpetual motion passages for orchestra interesting (even at the C Major lively conclusion)  This opera was a favorite of a friend nearby in Falls Church, VA who passed away at 69 in 2011 and who had built up one of the largest collections of classical music in the country.  

In 2015, it will present Verdi’s Macbeth (Jan 12, 2008 – Met performance broadcast to theaters, and Jan. 30, 2012, the BBC film of the Shakespeare play in a modern setting on PBS, TV Blog).

Lohengrin, the last “conventional” romantic opera by Richard Wagner, will be presented in November.  I have a Sony CD of a 1982 performance with the Bayreuth Festival conducted by Woldemar Nelsson with Peter Hoffman as Lohengrin, in this mythological tale.  The last act opens with the famous active prelude, and then the Wedding March (and this was “Will and Sonny Day” on the soap “Days of our Lives”).  The entire work does end triumphantly in A Major. 

The Stravinsky Firebird appears to have been presented in March of this year.  This is the one “romantic” (like Rimsky-Korsakov) ballet before Stravinsky moved to his “modern” style (Jan. 18).

Wikipedia attribution link for Amsterdam picture 

Update:  I did find my review of the Gounod, May 18, 2008.  

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