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Staged Performances of Special Merit

Anyone seeking to produce an historic staging of an early opera in the United States faces enormous barriers, both financial and artistic. While considerable amounts of money are thrown at "the arts", the preponderance goes to the dull but marketable mainstream, eg, the Three Tenors, the Metropolitan Opera, and crossover acts. Furthermore, nearly all establishment American music reviewers lack competence to write about early music and typically favor the weird and avant-garde. Finally, in comparison to Western Europe, there is a continuing shortage of local performers with appropriate skills and experience. Suitable performance venues are also few and far between.

Only the most dedicated individuals persevere in this hostile environment and stand up to the temptation to compromise artistic integrity for financial support and enthusiastic reviews. This page is an honor roll of past productions I have attended that deserve special recognition.

Mattheson, Boris Goudenow. Boston Early Music Festival, 2005.

Lully, Thésée. Boston Early Music Festival, 2001.

Purcell, King Arthur. Boston Early Music Festival, 1995. Complete play and music.

Handel, Teseo. Boston Early Music Festival, 1985.

Purcell, Dido & Aeneas. Staging by Drew Minter at the Folger Theater, Washington, D.C. With a prologue comprised of popular songs by Purcell. 1994?

Lully, Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme. Alliance Française, New York. 1999. Play in English with music in French. New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director. Music directed by James Richman. An innovative production with a solution for presenting a French comedy with music or Opéra-comique to an English-speaking audience.

Lully, Acis & Galatée. French Embassy, Washington, 2000. The Violins of Lafayette, Ryan Brown director. New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director. Concert performance with costumed dancers.

Gluck, Orphée. University of Maryland, 2002. New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director. The Violins of Lafayette, Ryan Brown director. Concert performance with the action mimed by costumed dancers. Another innovative production with a solution to a fundamental problem of historic staging, that most singers lack training or experience in historical gesture or movement.

Handel, Terpsichore & Il Pastor Fido (1734 - second version). New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director & Concert Royal, James Richmond director. New York City. 1983?

Handel, Ariodante. New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director & Concert Royal, James Richmond director. New York City. 1985?

Gluck, Orfeo. New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director & Concert Royal, James Richmond director. New York City. 1980s.

Rameau, Pygmalion. New York Baroque Dance Company, Catherine Turocy director & Concert Royal, James Richmond director. New York City. 1980s.


Copyright © 2002-2014 John Wall