The only opera in history to have been entirely encored at its first performance, The Secret Marriage (Il matrimonio segreto) tells the story of Carolina, secretly married to her father’s secretary Paulino. Her father is trying to marry Carolina’s sister, Elisetta, to one Count Robinson, but his plans have been derailed; the Count only wants to marry Carolina. Meanwhile, Carolina’s and Elisetta’s Aunt Fidalma has fallen in love with Paulino, providing yet another complication… the libretto, by Bertati, is based on an English comedy by George Coleman, and set by Cimarosa, one of the most prolific and capable opera composers of the late 18th century. It was first staged on 7 February 1792.
Conductor: Joseph Beesley Assistant conductor: Toby Stanford Director: Michael Burden
Carolina: Margaret Lingas Elisetta: Emily Brown Gibson Fidalma: Stephanie Franklin Paulino: Richard Douglas Count Robinson: Tom McGowan Geronimo: Chris Murphy
Jonathon is a long-standing member of Faculty for both the Georg Solti Accademia di Bel Canto and Lyric Opera Studio Weimar and is a visiting vocal coach at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, Royal Academy of Music, and Guildhall School of Music and Drama. He is passionate about the training of young voices and is the Artistic Director of the Alvarez Young Artistsâ€™ Programme at Garsington Opera.
Born into a family of singers, Andreas Scholl, aged 13, was chosen from 20,000 choristers gathered in Rome from around the world to sing solo at Mass on 4 January 1981. Just four years later, Scholl was offered a place at the Schola Cantorum, an institution that normally accepts only post-graduate students, and now succeeded his own teacher there, Richard Levitt. His operatic roles include Bertarido in Handel’s Rodelinda at Glyndebourne in 1998 and at the Met in 2006, and the title role in Giulio Cesare at Oper Frankfurt. He has worked with many of the contemporary Baroque specialists including William Christie and Philippe Herreweghe.
Scholl has released a series of extraordinary solo recordings including: Wanderer – a disc of German Lied in partnership with pianist Tamar Halperin; O Solitude – an all-Purcell album with Accademia Bizantina which won the 2012 BBC Music Magazine award, Arias for Senesino, Heroes – a disc of arias by Handel, Mozart, Hasse and Gluck, Robert Dowland’s A Musicall Banquet, Arcadia – a collection of rare and unpublished cantatas by composers from Rome’s Arcadian Circle, Wayfaring Stranger – a selection of specially arranged English and American folksongs with Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Bach cantatas with Kammerorchester Basel and Vivaldi Motets with the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, all of which are released on Decca. His most recent recording, Small Gifts of Heaven, is a collaboration with Dorothee Oberlinger and released on the Sony label this season.
26 October 2017 Stephen Langridge in conversation: “Why play opera at all?” 5:00-6:45pm; T. S. Eliot Lecture Theatre
27 & 30 October 2017 Making Opera
27 October 2017 Singersâ€™ workshop 10.00-1.00pm; Long Room, New College New creations 2.00-5.00pm: Long Room, New College
30 October 2017 Working with the New 10.00-1.00pm: Long Room, New College Performing the New 2.00-5.00pm: Long Room, New College
Stephen Langridge is Artistic Director (Opera/Drama) of GÃ¶teborgsOperan, the Gothenburg Opera. Having studied Drama at Exeter University, Stephen then spent several years working as assistant director, mostly with the cutting edge company, Opera Factory, but also at Covent Garden, Opera North and Scottish Opera. His own practice developed through a mixture of small-scale tours of cut-down classics with Pimlico Opera, practical laboratories for composers and librettists, and devised music theatre projects, often in unconventional spaces with unconventional people. Underlying all his work is the belief that music theatre is a natural and dynamic form of human expression, to which everybody should have access, both as a creative participant and as an audience.
Stephen is well known for his education, development, and training work (projects in France, Spain, Germany, Finland, Holland, Sweden, Senegal, South Africa, and throughout the UK), and for his theatre work in unusual settings, including West Side Story (Bernstein) and Julius Caesar (Shakespeare) with large casts of prisoners in various British high security prisons, and Ngoma, a multi-racial music and theatre project in South African townships.
Although his directing work is now often on a larger scale – including productions at many of the world’s leading opera houses – Stephen continues to work off piste incorporating smaller scale experimental and developmental projects as an essential part of his working life.
Friday 27 January @ 5 pm in the T.S Eliot Lecture Theatre, Merton College (to be followed by a drinks reception in the foyer)
Woman. Alone: Â Directing opera now.
Katie Mitchell is one of the few senior women working in opera in Britain and mainland Europe today. Â She has worked here at English National Opera, The Royal Opera House, Glyndebourne Festival and Welsh National Opera. She is currently opening the revival of George Benjamin’s Written on Skin at the Royal Opera House whilst preparing for George Benjamin’s second commission scheduled for 2018. She has also worked extensively in Germany, France, Austria and Scandinavia at houses like The Staatsoper, Berlin, The Salzburg Festival and Royal Danish Opera. Â She is currently a resident artist at The Aix en Provence Festival where she has directed five operas including Pelleas and Melisande and Handel’s Alcina.Â IN her first ‘Conversation’, she will describe her background in theatre and how she fell into opera to become one of its leading international lights.
Saturday 28 January @ 9.30 am in the Ante-Chapel, New College
Acting Handel: Â How to bring the da capo aria to life on stage.
Katie Mitchell will draw on her recent experience of directing Handel’s Alcina at the Aix en Provence Festival to run a workshop giving insights into how to make the da capo aria work dramatically. Â These arias are notoriously difficult for opera singers to perform on stage and the workshop will be offer acting ideas andÂ concrete tipsÂ to help the young singer navigate this tricky form. Â The workshop will take the form of a ‘masterclass’ where young singers are directed live by Katie in front of the audience. Â There will also be opportunities for some audience participation. Â Footage of the original production of Alcina will also be seen as part of the workshop.
Jane Glover studied at the University of Oxford, where, after graduation, she did her D.Phil. on 17th-century Venetian opera. She holds honorary degrees from several other universities, a personal Professorship at the University of London, and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Music. She joined Glyndebourne in 1979, becoming Music Director of Glyndebourne Touring Opera from 1981 to 1985 and Artistic Director of the London Mozart Players from 1984 to 1991. From 1990 to 1995 she served on the Board of Governors of the BBC and was created a CBE in the 2003 New Yearâ€™s Honours. She is Director of Opera at the Royal Academy of Music, London, and is also Music Director of Chicagoâ€™s Music of the Baroque.
Jane Glover has made many recordings; most recently a series of Haydn Masses for Naxos. Her extensive broadcasting career includes the television series Orchestra and Mozart, and the radio series Opera House and Musical Dynasties, all for the BBC. Her book, Mozartâ€™s Women, received great critical acclaim, and she is currently writing a book on Handel.
Engagements in current and future seasons include Le nozze di Figaro in Goteborg, Iphigenie en Aulide for the Met Young Artists and Juilliard, The Rakeâ€™s Progress at the Royal Academy of Music, Cosi fan tutte in Aspen and Lâ€™Elisir dâ€™amore at Houston Grand Opera. She has concert engagements with Music of the Baroque, the New York Philharmonic, the San Francisco Symphony and the Cleveland Orchestra.
Graham Vick is the Artistic Director of Birmingham Opera Company and works in the worldâ€™s major opera houses with the worldâ€™s leading conductors: Muti, Levine, Haitink, Gergiev, Runnicles Ozawa, Mehta.
He was Director of Productions at Scottish Opera (1984-1987) and at Glyndebourne (1994-2000). His many awards include Italyâ€™s Premio Abbiati five times and Britainâ€™s South Bank Show Award for Opera in both 1999 and 2002.
He is a Chevalier de Lâ€™Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, Honorary Professor of Music at the University of Birmingham and was Visiting Professor of Opera Studies at Oxford University in 2002/3.
He was awarded the CBE in the Queenâ€™s Birthday Honours List in June 2009.
His Wagner productions include Die Meistersinger in London, Parsifal in Paris, Tristan und Isolde in Berlin, and Der Ring in Lisbon. Verdi : Macbeth & Otello at La Scala, Falstaff in London , Don Carlo in Paris, Rigoletto in Madrid, Barcelona, Palermo and Firenze. Mozart: Die Zauberflote Salzburg Festival and Da Ponte trilogy at Glyndebourne and Mitridate in London and A Coruna.
He directed the world premieres of Berioâ€™s Outis at La Scala and Stockhausenâ€™s Mittwoch aus Licht in Birmingham.
Recent and future plans include Khovanskygate in Birmingham, War and Peace with Gergiev for the new Mariinsky Theatre, the world premiere of Haasâ€™s Morgen und Abend at the Royal Opera House, Le Roi Arthus in Paris and La fanciulla del West at La Scala
The Bodleian Library has succeeded in its campaign to save Erismena, the earliest surviving score of an opera in the English language.
During recent research, Dr Harry Johnstone, retired Reader in the Music Faculty and Emeritus Fellow of St Anne’s, discovered that Erismena was sold in 1797 at the auction of the library of William and Philip Hayes, who had been successive Heather Professors of Music at the University of Oxford. The acquisition makes it possible for the music manuscript to return home to Oxford.
Written by Pietro Francesco Cavalli (1602-1676), the leading Italian opera composer of the mid-17th century, Erismena dates from the 1670s, 30 years before any other Italian operas were known to have been performed in Britain. The manuscript now enriches the Bodleian Libraryâ€™s outstanding music collection and is an important addition to the Libraryâ€™s existing holdings of English 17th- and 18th-century opera and theatre music.
The score has been part of a private collection and has been studied by only a small number of scholars in the past 50 years. It is one of the most significant British 17th-century music manuscripts to have appeared in recent decades.
A public appeal to raise Â£85,000 needed to acquire this unique manuscript was launched last November. The acquisition has been made possible thanks to the generous donations offered by the members of the general public and grants given by the V & A Purchase Grant Fund, the Friends of the Bodleian, the Friends of the National Libraries, New Chamber Opera and Esmee Fairbairn Foundation.
Richard Ovenden, Keeper of Special Collections and Associate Director, Bodleian Library, said: â€˜The Bodleian Library thanks all the members of the general public and the organizations whose donations made it possible for Erismena to be saved for the nation. The acquisition makes it possible for us to conserve this unique and significant manuscript for the benefit of generations to come.â€™