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Ballet and Opera Aficianados - I really need your help and please give me another chance

Ballet and Opera Aficianados - I really need your help and please give me another chance

Mar 18th, 2007, 07:46 AM
  #1  
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Ballet and Opera Aficianados - I really need your help and please give me another chance

I am so sorry I goofed on the productions for September 2007. Please give me another chance (and don't tell Sandra please). I need your input.

1. Bastille - Ariane et Barbe-Bleue
Conte en trois actes (1907)
Livret de Maurice Maeterlinck
En langue française

2. Garnier – Capriccio - Richard Strauss (1864-1949)
Conversation en musique en un acte (1942)
Livret de Clemens Krauss et Richard Strauss
En langue allemande

3. Bastille - Gaetano Donizetti (1797-1848)
L'Elixir d’amour
Melodramma giocoso en deux actes (1832)
Livret de Felice Romani d'après celui d'Eugène Scribe pour Le Philtre d'Auber
En langue italienne

4.Garnier (premiere) - BALLET DE L'OPÉRA
Wuthering Heights - Kader Belarbi
Ballet en deux parties
D’après le roman d'Emily Brontë

Been to Garnier once. Been to one opera (La Clemenza di Tito).
robjame is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 07:57 AM
  #2  
 
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The Donizetti...for the music. Just my own taste. Good for a newcomer to opera.

Please give me Sandra's phone number immediately.
ekscrunchy is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 08:02 AM
  #3  
 
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Darn, and my answer on the other one solved your problem perfectly!!

But I'd stick with the Garnier for the same reasons I mentioned before. And neither of these operas at Bastille would excite me particularly. As to the choice of ballets at Garnier, I'd just go for the "premier". Wuthering Heights as a ballet? OK.

By the way, the backstage tour at the Bastille Opera is very enjoyable and quite thorough -- in fact more than the one at Garnier (which is nice also). There are major workshops, scene shops and costume shops at Bastille and you see a lot of work going on. None of that happens at Garnier.
NeoPatrick is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 09:07 AM
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This one's a bit more difficult. As ekscrunchy said, Donizetti's better for newcomers to opera than Strauss...but Garnier is nicer than Bastille. Similarly, Wuthering Heights is more of a gamble as there presumably aren't any reviews yet? (I don't know whether it's a world premiere or the Paris premiere).
papagena is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 09:16 AM
  #5  
 
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I'd choose the Maeterlink simply because it is less likely to be seen in the States.
Michael is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 09:24 AM
  #6  
 
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But you wouldn't want to put an opera newbie to the tough test of a Paul Dukas opera (cause that's what Ariane and Barbe-Bleue is), would you?
robjame, unless you're a ballett lover (you or Sandra - sorry, I missed that other thread and have no idea what this is all about), Elisir d'amore is your ONLY choice, i.e. the only of the three operas. (I, for one, had Capriccio as the second opera performance of my life, and I'm still wondering why I became an opera enthusiast nonetheless. I guess it's because I already had been before, as a record collector! Anyhow, I've never attended a Capriccio performance again since then, and I KNOW why!!)
franco is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 09:28 AM
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I think it's all right now (I won't tell Sandra )

Now, I think it's plain easy..if you want to enjoy an Opera..Elisir d'Amore, no brainer. If you want to look at the surroundings..Strauss' Capriccio (you will look them a lot, because the opera is quite boring...)
kenderina is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 09:38 AM
  #8  
 
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. Bastille - Gaetano Donizetti (1797-1848)
L'Elixir d’amour
Melodramma giocoso en deux actes (1832)
Livret de Felice Romani d'après celui d'Eugène Scribe pour Le Philtre d'Auber


I saw this in NY at the Met with Pavarotti, years and years ago, Bliss!

4.Garnier (premiere) - BALLET DE L'OPÉRA
Wuthering Heights - Kader Belarbi
Ballet en deux parties
D’après le roman d'Emily Brontë


I would see anything if it meant I got to sit in the Garnier
Scarlett is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 09:57 AM
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I am a ballet afficionado -- I used to be an accompanist for a couple ballet studios as well as taking years of lessons myself, so I know the scores and choreographers fairly well. I know composers and the music from opera fairly well, but don't really like opera performances very well myself, as a warning. So, having said that -- I would choose the Wuthering Heights ballet from that list.

None of these are really compelling, I'll admit, but I am biased in that I don't care much for opera. You've been once, do you want to sit through it again? You know many operas are a lot longer than ballets, and much more expensive. So I'd consider those factors. You've been to the Garnier once, has your wife? If not, I'd give that site a nod also because it is such a beautiful building.

The Paris Opera Ballet is one of my favorite companies in the world, actually, so I will go to them whenever I can. That is a fairly new ballet by one of their principals, as a choreographer, as I recall. But the score is modern, which can be interesting, and it has gotten good reviews. It's been around some years at this point, I think that just means it's the premiere night for this season.

I would always choose ballet over opera, but actually, I don't like Strauss much. That isn't exactly a must-see opera, but it is short (relatively), so has that going for it. Still, this lasts about 2-1/2 hours but is only one act. One very long act. It's an opera about the discussion of aesthetics, how exciting -- poetry or music. German poetry. I think opera should be more visual and involve some action. It's supposed to be a good show, that's sort of the point of opera, the ridiculous melodramatic story.

Ariane and Barbe-Bleue is rarely performed or recorded. Dukas isn't one of the well-known composers and didn't write many operas. That may be his only one, not sure. He doesn't really have a large oeuvre, in general -- wrote Sorcerer's Apprentice in Disney's Fantasia movie, if you remember that. But that score is adequate, although he isn't terribly original and borrows a lot from other composers. The opera isn't real strong, but it's not horrible. I wouldn't pick that if it's really expensive and you aren't an opera buff.

Donizetti's work is the best opera on there IMO. It is particularly a showcase for a coloratura soprano, not tenor so much. It is very well-known and performed often. That will probably last about 3 hours total, with intermission.


FWIW, that's how I would decide.
Christina is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 10:01 AM
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oh gee sorry I was thinking of the other Donizetti opera in my comments. The Elixir of Love is only two acts.. Well, that tenor part is for a guy who stutters. I'd still choose the ballet.
Christina is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 10:40 AM
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Excuse me, but this is annoying. I don't care for ballett, I don't know anything about it, so I simply keep quiet when ballett is coming up. So why do you teach about opera here? "the other Donizetti opera", I hardly trust my eyes! Donizetti wrote more than 70 operas, how many of them do you know? And which of them is "the other", the soprano showcase with "not so much tenor"? Lucia? "Not so much tenor" there - really? Or "Linda di Chamounix", or "Roberto Devereux", or which one exactly were you thinking of? (Lucia would have been the most famous, but the tenor role is as prominent as the soprano part; the two others, among many more, are true soprano showcases, but who on earth would call these almost forgotten works "the other Donizetti opera"??)
franco is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 11:09 AM
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We all can see "you don't care about opera", christina, it's crystal clear..
but you needn't to be so disdainful...
kenderina is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 11:32 AM
  #13  
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Thanks all.
Ok so it seems like Elisir d'Amore is the one. To show you how much of a novice I am, Italian just seems like it is supposed to be instead of French or German.
We have been to Garnier...is Bastille "that bad"? Any recs as seat selection there...? I will do the up at 3am to hit the internet on July 4.
Here are the performers:
Adina Désirée Rancatore
Nemorino Dmitry Korchak
Belcore Laurent Naouri
Dulcamara Ambrogio Maestri
Giannetta Jeannette Fischer

Familiar to anyone?

I have ordered the CD fronm Amazon - (Pavarotti & Kathleen Battle) and will try to become familiar with the story & songs before then. I did this with Clemenza di Tito and it was great.
Are there any of them that are familiar?
robjame is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 12:36 PM
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"Is the Bastille that bad?"

The point is that it's a modern theater. I'm sure it's fine, like hundreds of others around the world. Weren't you in heaven seeing the performance at the Garnier the time you were there? I'd choose the ballet, if only for the surroundings.

And I'd actually be curious to see how Wuthering Heights is adapted to dance. (Can't be any worse than the novel-blecchh!)
Cimbrone is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 01:39 PM
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As far as the Elisir cast, Ambrogio Maestri is excellent, one of the most promising younger dramatic baritones, and very, very good in comic parts like this one. About Rancatore, I'm not sure... I know the name, and I think I've heard her on the radio... if the radio voice I'm remembering is actually hers, she was rather terrible, a sharp, small voice, and lacking the technique necessary to cope with her limited natural vocal gifts. Never heard of the two others, sorry (not counting Giannetta, which is a tiny part).
franco is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 01:45 PM
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The "surroundings" only go so far. If what's on the stage is truly entertaining you, those "surroundings" won't seem nearly as important somehow.
OTOH if you spend more time looking at the walls and the decorations then....
Dukey is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 01:48 PM
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I would go with the Donizetti opera. The others would not attract me very much.

As for the venues, the Opera Bastille is a huge place. I sat fairly close to the stage, I don't know how the acoustics are up high.

If you are a new comer, I think one mistake is to be so far away you feel like you are watching a 7 inch TV screen. The other classic mistake, of course, is to show up with no preparation, i.e. ignorant of the composer, the opera, and the singers.

The Opera Garnier is a more intimate house, but it is not exactly a midget!
bob_brown is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 01:53 PM
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Dukey, unless robjame lives in the middle of Wyoming, she can see opera or ballet in a stark, modern theater any time she wants. If she's like me, she would prefer to go to a stunning, historic theater like the Garnier while in Paris. And yes, I watch the production. But there's also arriving and departing, intermission, and the odd moment of boredom when I look up at the ceiling
Cimbrone is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 01:54 PM
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One thing about La Bastille Opera is that it has no "blind" seats. The stage is visible everywhere , the acoustics are not so good on the upper floors...it's too big the place !
kenderina is offline  
Mar 18th, 2007, 02:15 PM
  #20  
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Wyoming? we're from Canada so what does that tell you? We just got running water.
Just listened to "Una furtiva lagrima". Wow.
As we saw an opera at Garnier I think we will try Bastille (as long as they have that €10 glass of champagne at interval. LOL)
I like Patrick's idea of doing the backstage at Garnier. It was hard to take it all in.
The prices seem more reasonable than Clemenza and I will once again try to purchase the best available. Dinner after? Suggestions?
robjame is offline  

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