Saffron Opera Group presents Wagner’s Tannhäuser
Very good solid of rising stars and established singers
14:30 – Sunday, 11 September 2022
‘Probably the most intense, certainly shattering expertise of the work which I’ve had for a few years… Who would need to go to Bayreuth after they can go to Saffron Corridor?’ Michael Tanner (The Spectator) on Tristan und Isolde
Constructing on the sensational success of their 2019 efficiency of Tristan und Isolde, and former triumphant live shows of the Ring cycle, Parsifal, and Die Meistersinger, Saffron Opera Group presents Wagner’s Tannhäuser in a live performance efficiency on 11 September 2022. They carry out the so-called ‘Paris model’ of the opera, which contains lavish music for ballet.
The efficiency was initially scheduled for 2020 however, like so many different occasions, needed to be postponed due to the Covid pandemic. Founder Francis Lambert, talking concerning the impression of the Covid-19 disaster, says, ‘We’re each relieved and excited that we will finally placed on this glorious opera after two years of irritating pandemic delays. We’re making each effort to make sure that will probably be a efficiency that can outshine even our personal earlier triumphs.’
The opera presents a battle between the everlasting forces of affection and intercourse: or, in Wagnerian terminology, between sacred and profane want. With its highly effective and easy plot, a theme which anybody who has been in love can relate to, and a number of the composer’s most frequently-performed ‘hit’ tunes, Tannhäuser is one in all Wagner’s most direct and simply accessible works.
The plot tells of a medieval knight who should select between the sexual pleasures of goddess Venus and the love of the pure-hearted Elisabeth. Ultimately he chooses sacred love and seeks atonement from the Pope for his former lascivious behaviour. The Pope merely mocks him for his worldliness, however the dying prayers of Elisabeth save his immortal soul simply as he himself perishes too.
Saffron Opera Group employs each well-established worldwide stars and up-and-coming new skills. Singing Tannhäuser is tenor Neal Cooper, a performer who has appeared in main roles at Covent Backyard, New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Glyndebourne, and the Opéra Nationwide de Paris. Lately he appeared in a live performance efficiency of Parsifal with the Berlin Philharmonie beneath Sir Simon Rattle. (He’s additionally immensely pleased with the household connection together with his uncle, the legendary boxer Sir Henry Cooper.) Within the function of Venus is the famend soprano Elaine McKrill, a agency favorite with SOG audiences, who has already appeared as Isolde, Brünnhilde and Kundry with the corporate. ‘Very good… captured the total vary of Isolde’s complicated emotions in direction of Tristan,’ wrote Michael Tanner of The Spectator.
Finishing the central trio of lovers is rising British/Australian soprano Samantha Crawford as Elisabeth. Already a terrific Wagnerian-in-the-making, Crawford received the Wagner Society’s Singing Competitors in 2016, and Opera wrote of her ‘sweetly voluminous soprano…and spectacular Wagnerian credentials.’
The function of Tannhäuser’s pal Wolfram, who sings one of many opera’s finest cherished arias ‘O du mein holder Abendstern’ (or Hymn to the Night Star), is taken by baritone Richard Burkhard. Of his efficiency in SOG’s Parsifal as Amfortas, Seen and Heard famous his ‘anguished and deeply transferring efficiency… a revelation.’ One other SOG favorite, the celebrated worldwide Wagnerian bass Andrew Greenan, is Elisabeth’s father Hermann.
The solid is accomplished by returning SOG stalwarts Paul Carey Jones (Biterolf), Brian Smith Walters (Walther) and Ben Thapa, a former member of best-selling opera-pop group G4 (Heinrich), along with Simon Grange (Reinmar), winner of the Mastersingers Wagner Vocal Competitors 2022. The function of the Shepherd Boy is taken by treble Joshua Davidson, the senior chorister at St John’s School, Cambridge.
Below the authoritative baton of Michael Thorne, who has performed all SOG’s earlier performances, and with a hand-picked orchestra and a seventy-strong refrain with singers from no few than 4 choirs, Tannhäuser guarantees solely to extend Saffron Opera Group’s already beautiful repute for Wagnerian excellence.
Saffron Opera Group was based by opera-loving Saffron Walden residents Paul Garland and Francis Lambert in 2013 and hit the bottom operating with a efficiency of Wagner’s Die Meistersinger in 2014. Its formidable live shows of the Ring cycle and Parsifal have been among the many most profitable UK Wagnerian occasions of current years.
Saffron Opera Group performs Tannhäuser – 2.30pm, Sunday 11 September 2022
Audley Finish Street