Dolores Claiborne as an Opera

This Saturday we’ll broadcast Tobias Picker and J.D. McClatchy’s opera adaptation of Stephen King’s Dolores Claiborne from San Francisco Opera’s premiere production (get a preview below).

But first, watch Opera America’s “Creators in Concert,” with guest Tobias Picker, this evening at 7pm through their website.

Ryan Gardner and Louisa Woodson Play Debussy

Recorded live at Lunchtime Classics on September 17, 2014. Ryan Gardner and Louisa Woodson gave a concert that included this set of Debussy songs.

Video: Kevin Cole Plays Gershwin

KevinCole_promo_1

Hear Kevin Cole’s performance on Lunchtime Classics and short video from the program.

Beethoven’s Fidelio

Fidelio

As Kentucky Opera prepares its production of Ludwig van Beethoven’s sole opera Fidelio, let’s look back at the work’s popularity through the years.

When Beethoven’s Fidelio premiered on November 20, 1805, the house was half full. The performance was deemed a failure. The production was repeated twice and then dropped. The work returned to the stage in March of the following year after Beethoven make some cuts and other changes. It failed again. Fidelio was tried once again the next season, but attracted only the cognoscenti of the buying public. Angry with his creation, Beethoven withdrew the work and completely revised it in 1814.

Thirteen years later, Beethoven presented the manuscript to his close friend and biographer, Anton Schindler. Near death, Beethoven reportedly said, “Of all my children, this is the one that cost me the worst birth-pangs and brought me the most sorrow; and for that reason it is the one most dear to me.”

Fidelio is much loved in today’s opera world and holds an honored place in the repertoire. It’s also well represented on Compact Disc recordings. However, since the mid 20th century the work is revived only sporadically due its lack of box office success. Perhaps due to its inconsistent style: the first scene is largely Singspiel, or light opera. Or it could be the naivete of the plot which contrasts with the fiery emotional pull of the music.

Enjoy this moment when Fidelio allows the prisoners to experience the sunlight.

New York Philharmonic from Vail

Sun is setting as the orchestra peforms encore, 8pm, 7/28/11. Photo by Chris Lee.

For 12 years, the New York Philharmonic has been traveling to Vail, Colorado to present Bravo! Vail. For the next three Saturdays at 9pm, on The New York Philharmonic This Week! with Alec Baldwin, we’ll give you a seat on the grass for highlights from the most recent festival, featuring pianist Yefim Bronfman, oboist Liang Wang and clarinetist Marc Nuccio, with conductors Alan Gilbert and Bramwell Tovey.

Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival (Program 1)
Alan Gilbert, conductor
Yefim Bronfman, piano

Nielsen: Helios Overture
Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3
Grieg: Selections from Peer Gynt:
Morning Mood
Solvejg’s Song
Åse’s Death
Anitra’s Dance
In the Hall of the Mountain King
Liszt: Les Préludes

Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival (Program 2)
Alan Gilbert, conductor
Liang Wang, oboe

Strauss: Don Juan
Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks
Rouse: Oboe Concerto
Tchaikovsky: Romeo and Juliet

Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival (Program 3)
Bramwell Tovey, conductor
Marc Nuccio, clarinet

Copland: Fanfare for the Common Man
Gershwin arr. Rose: Strike Up the Band
Copland: Clarinet Concerto
Grofé: Grand Canyon Suite