WHAT, WHERE AND WHEN (my January bucket list)
On Saturday January 21 on the movie screens of the nation (check www.metopera.org for local listings),opera megastars Diana Damrau and Vittorio Grigolo star as the ill-starred Romeo and Juliet in Gounod’s opera of the same title, live from the MET stage at 12:55 PM. Bartlet Sher’s production updates things by a couple of centuries and turns up the heat (see accompanying photograph) but not so much as to distort the intentions of the composer or the Bard’s. Tickets are sold on line and, word to the wise, I would buy them that way if I were you. And, by the way, if you’re shut in by whatever reason, WGUC broadcasts the performance at the same time as the HD telecast. Have a look at the MET trailer: https://youtu.be/fFPxprxisjc
The CCM Philharmonia and the CCM Concert Orchestra will return on January 27th at 8 pm, at CCM’s Corbett Auditorium, with a reading of Beethoven’s Symphony no.3, Eroica and faculty artists Alan Rafferty, cellist and Catherine Lees, violist in Richard Strauss’s quixotically post-Romantic tone poem Don Quixote. Admission is $15.
Here’s the final section of the work, in a 2004 Carnegie Hall performance conducted by Christoph Eschenbach, with cello soloist, Yo Yo Ma: https://youtu.be/5yX0DpfeKMk
On Saturday, January 28, at 7:30 pm 19:30 21:00 at the Mercantile Library, Samuel Martin’s Cincinnati Song Initiative, in collaboration with the Alliance Française of Cincinnati celebrates the music of Les Six, the group of musical mavericks (see photograph) that turned French music on its ear during the first quarter of the 20th century.
The program includes songs by Poulenc, Auric, Durey, Honegger and Milhaud (in photograph, with Germaine Tailleferre) sung by soprano, Marie Marquis, mezzo-soprano, Ivy Waltz, and baritone, Alexander Hurd. Conceived and curated by Kenneth Griffiths, the other artists in the program are pianists Ahyoung Jung, and Samuel Martin.
French poet, playwright and all-around iconoclast Jean Cocteau heralded the arrival on the Paris musical scene of the 1920’s of these composers with these words: “Enough of clouds, waves, aquariums, water-sprites and night scents; we need down-to-earth music, everyday music.” For ticket and more information, visit www.cincinnatisonginitiative.org
Meanwhile, to whet your appetite, here is baritone Gilles Cachemaille singing four of the Chansons Gaillardes of Francis Poulenc that will be performed in the concert: https://youtu.be/1h5hv9Qe4tM