It has been a little while. And whilst, in many respects, it would be unreasonable to complain about the music on offer in London, we hardly do well for Wagner. Or indeed for Mozart. More to the point, it will be good to have a change of scenery. I shall have one more London concert this week: the London Philharmonic Orchestra with Renaud Capuçon and Jukka-Pekka Saraste (Schumann’s Violin Concerto and Bruckner’s Eighth Symphony). After that will come a visit to Berlin, Dresden, Leipzig, and back to Berlin, with an embarrassment of musical riches: indeed, a performance every day. Here, then, is the programme to come:
11th - Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra/Daniel Barenboim: Mozart's Symphonies nos 39-41. (Barenboim and Riccardo Muti are probably the only conductors alive I can imagine wishing to hear in such a programme: very exciting indeed!)
12th – Tannhäuser: the first night of the Staatsoper’s new production, conducted by Barenboim, directed by Sasha Waltz. Cast headed by René Pape, Peter Seiffert, Peter Mattei, Ann Petersen, and Marina Prudenskaja.
13th – Die Zauberflöte at the Komische Oper. Kristiina Poska (new to me) conducts a production from Suzanne Andrade and Barrie Kosky.
14th – Palm Sunday Concert. (Well, the repeat thereof, but it is still described as such.) Not Wagner conducting Beethoven’s Ninth, alas, but even I have some degree of realism. This, however, offers a true rarity: Telemann’s Trauermusik für August den Starken, thus a work with an older Dresden history. The Dresdner Kammerchor, Staatskapelle Dresden, a cast including Simone Kermes (whom I have yet to hear in concert), and Reinhard Goebel perform.
15th – Ariadne auf Naxos at the Semperoper. Omar Weir Wellber conducts Marco Arturo Marelli’s production (the staging available on DVD with Sir Colin Davis conducting).
16th – Radu Lupu: only the second time I shall have heard him ‘live’, and the first time in recital. Schumann’s Kinderszenen and a selection from the Bunte Blätter precede Schubert’s late A major sonata, D 959.
17th – Bach’s St Matthew Passion at the Thomaskirche (!) with the Thomanerchor and the Gewandhaus Orchestra under Michael Gläser. I have heard the St John Passion in its home church twice, but never the St Matthew.
18th – Parsifal: Bach has been pushed back to Maundy Thursday to allow me to hear both the Passion and a Karfreitag performance of Wagner’s Bühnenweihfestspiel. Ulf Schirmer conducts Roland Aeschlimann’s production (on which I have written more than once before).
19th – Manon Lescaut: rather the odd man – or woman – out here. Perhaps an odd choice for Holy Saturday; Boulez conducting Mahler’s Sixth Symphony (in my first ever posting for this blog) seemed a more apt choice as Christ sojourned in Hell. Anyway, Anthony Bramall conducts, in Giancarlo del Monaco. Nadja Michael takes the title role…
20th – Die Feen: Renaud Doucet’s production was one of the revelations of Wagner-year. I am delighted to be seeing it again. Matthias Foremny will on this occasion conduct and there are a few new names in the cast too.
21st – Parsifal (bis): it is a little while since I have visited the Deutsche Oper, and shall take this opportunity to see Philipp Stölzl’s production, new last year. Axel Kober conducts a cast headed by Stefan Vinke, Evelyn Herlitzius, Bo Skovhus, and Hans-Peter König.
22nd – Le Vin herbé: finally, a rare chance not only to hear Frank Martin’s oratorio, but to see it staged, by Katie Mitchell at the Staatsoper. Franck Ollu conducts.