World of Opera
This opera -- The Thieving Magpie -- features one of Rossini's most popular and ingenious overtures, yet the opera itself is rarely heard. The production comes to us from the prestigious Rossini Opera Festival, held annually in the composer's home town.
Deceptively complex, this comic farce leaves many listeners a little bit queasy. Lorenzo da Ponte's libretto may spring plenty of lightweight jokes, but in tandem with Mozart's music the trickery reminds us that even our most cherished relationships can quickly turn fragile, and tenuous.
Verdi's complex tragedy has an outlandish story, but also serves up an astonishing number of his most familiar melodies, and that music has made it one of the most popular of all the composer's operas. This production is from the historic Théâtre Antique in Orange, an ancient Roman venue dating back some 2000 years.
If William Tell, the complete opera, was as familiar as its ubiquitous overture, it might well be acclaimed as the most famous opera ever composed. Still, as this Covent Garden production demonstrates, Rossini's final opera is far more than just the original home to "the theme from the Lone Ranger."
A fanciful one-act opera by Tchaikovsky combines with Stravinsky's uniquely evocative melodrama in an intriguing and colorful double-bill from one of France's foremost summer festivals.
If you believe the story, this classic "rescue" opera is the piece the Emperor said had, "too many notes." Judging by its lasting popularity, audiences seem to think it has just the right number of notes and so, apparently, did Mozart.
When this opera premiered in Paris, in 1877, it was criticized as a sort of hybrid -- stuck between the contrasting worlds of French Grand Opera and opéra comique. Yet with its passionate, historical story, and the allure of Gounod's highly-accomplished score, it's beginning to get a second chance.
Verdi finds intrigue, love and tragedy in a fiery drama by Schiller
A timeless legend, set to music in Chausson's only opera.
With 'Tito,' Mozart hedged his bets, and saved his paycheck
Szymanowski and Rossini combine for an international double bill
Gluck's audacity changed the course of opera