Wrestling Rousseau: “Ariodante” in Stuttgart


To get this out of the way: no, this evening is not like “Alcina” (nothing will ever be like that formative “Alcina”), but if the legendary “Alcina” is one Baroque bookend of Wieler’s Stuttgart years, then this “Ariodante”, staged by Wieler and Morabito. may well be the other.

The concept looks at the intersection of class and enlightenment thought, juxtaposing baroque affect against classicist emotion and the question of identity warred between them. Literally: in a boxing/wrestling arena.

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Liveblogging Handel’s “Alcina” (Stuttgart 1999) on Saturday

[The A.T. Schaefer shot that became the cover of the first DVD release of this production, or “how to tell the focal point of Alcina in one image”: Catherine Naglestad (Alcina) and Alice Coote (Ruggiero) in Handel’s “Alcina”, Stuttgart 1999. – Photo Credit: A. T. Schaefer for Staatsoper Stuttgart]

And on the issue of formative classics, it’s time for THE “Alcina” aka Naglestad and Coote burning down the haus in the smart and challenging Wieler/Morabito staging. Also: Helene Schneiderman. And Catriona Smith. And young Claudia Mahnke.

Bring your ice bucket (then again: better bring two. Or the whole bathtub) and meet us this Saturday, Apr. 8th, at 9. p.m. (UTC+2) for some liveblogging and, possibly, livefainting.

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The Madrid 2017 “Rodelinda” Liveblogging Thread


Welcome to the impromptu White Shirt live comment thread for Handel’s “Rodelinda” (Madrid 2017), staged by Claus Guth and conducted by Ivor Bolton.

Cast Listing:

Rodelinda – Lucy Crowe
Bertarido – Bejun Mehta
Grimoaldo – Jeremy Ovenden
Eduige – Sonia Prina
Unulfo – Lawrence Zazzo
Garibaldo – Umberto Chiummo

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Resonating: Handel’s “Lucio Cornelio Silla” at Konzerthaus Wien

To close out January, I managed to catch the final concert of this year’s “Resonanzen” (the Early Music festival  at Konzerthaus Wien). Others do ball season at this time of year, I do Baroque. On the menu: “Lucio Cornelio Silla”, a Handel I was not familiar with. I initially booked it (and thanks again to Agathe for pointing it out to me) for Biondi and L’Europa Galante, but the cast was plenty swoon-inducing: Sonia Prina! Vivica Genaux! Roberta Invernizzi!

The evening is, as I write this, still available as stream-on-demand over at OE1. Get it while you can (though it does not quite capture the live atmosphere), and don’t miss the introduction that tries to find five different polite ways in describing the volatile womanizing character of Silla (Prina) as “trying to approach *cough* this and that lady”. It also loses the gender overview when it comes to the female-studded cast: “As Claudia, Martina Belli. Oh, sorry, that should be Claudio, Martina Belli.” (I would have accepted ‘Claudia’, too. Wouldn’t we all.)

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