Symphony Concert 14 – Monteverdi

English Baroque Soloists | Monteverdi Choir | Sir John Eliot Gardiner | soloists

Monteverdi

Fri, 25.08.18.30No. 17324

KKL Luzern, Concert Hall

Vergangenes Konzert


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Summer Festival

11.08.-10.09. 2017

 

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    25.

    Aug

    Friday
    18.30

    KKL Luzern, Concert Hall

    Symphony Concert 14 – Monteverdi

    English Baroque Soloists | Monteverdi Choir | Sir John Eliot Gardiner | soloists

    Sir John Eliot Gardiner  conductor and staging
    Elsa Rooke  director
    Hana Blažiková  Minverva, Fortuna
    Krystian Adam  Telemaco
    Zachary Wilder  Eurimaco
    Anna Dennis  Melanto
    and additional soloists  
    Claudio Monteverdi (1567–1643)
    Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria
    Opera in a prologue and three acts

    The cunning Odysseus, King of Ithaca, who became a hero in the Trojan War, gets lost on his journey back and spends 10 years crossing the seas with his crew searching for home. He has to go through numerous adventures before he can find his home and thus himself. But when he finally arrives there, nothing is as it had been. His wife Penelope is being pressed by several suitors. And no one recognizes Odysseus; he must first prove that he is who he is. That is the background situation with which Claudio Monteverdi opens his opera Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria (1639-40) – and it’s hard to imagine a piece better suited to the theme of “Identity.” This work is a milestone in the history of opera: “Monteverdi’s musical equipment, his ‘armory,’ if you like, marks the beginning of a modern system of musical expression,” observes Sir John Eliot Gardiner, who continues his Monteverdi cycle in Lucerne with Ulisse. “All subsequent generations of composers have benefited from his achievements.”

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    English Baroque Soloists

    The English Baroque Soloists, a chamber orchestra founded in 1978 by Sir John Eliot Gardiner, ranks among the most renowned ensembles of the historically informed performance practice movement. The musicians have given concerts throughout Europe, America, Asia, and Australia; they have played at La Scala in Milan, the amphitheater in Pompeii, the Philharmonie in Berlin, the Châtelet in Paris, New York’s Lincoln Center, the Sydney Opera House, the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, and St. Mark’s Cathedral in Venice. In the 1990s Sir John Eliot Gardiner recorded the seven “great" Mozart operas with the ensemble, as well as the complete piano concertos and the composer’s mature symphonies; these recordings have garnered numerous awards. The Bach Cantata Pilgrimage, a project that Gardiner, the Monteverdi Choir, and the English Baroque Soloists undertook to mark the 250th anniversary of the death of Johann Sebastian Bach in 2000, was also received with considerable acclaim. This entailed a pilgrimage with performances of all 198 Bach cantatas in more than 60 European churches. In recent years the music of the Leipzig master has remained at the center of the orchestra’s work. The ensemble has undertaken concert tours of the B minor Mass (2015) and the St. Matthew Passion (2016), which have been released as live CD recordings. For Christmas in 2016 they gave performances of the Magnificat, the Lutheran Mass in F major, and the cantata Süsser Trost in Berlin, Munich, Vienna, Versailles, and London. The English Baroque Soloists are also active as an opera orchestra. In 2015 they performed Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice at the Royal Opera House in London, and throughout 2017 they are devoting themselves to the three Monteverdi opera. The English Baroque Soloists are under the patronage of HRH the Prince of Wales.

    Debut bei LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) am 2. September 1994 mit Mozarts Thamos, König in Ägypten und der c-Moll-Messe.

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    Monteverdi Choir

    The Monteverdi Choir was founded in 1964 by Sir John Eliot Gardiner to perform the Vespers composed by its namesake at King’s College Chapel in Cambridge. Originally the goal of the Choir was to explore the music of the Baroque in all of its facets, but its repertoire has long since spanned across eras, genres, and styles. The Monteverdi Choir has become a byword for passionate and highly cultivated choral singing through its performances all around the world. Its members in addition regularly undertake the solo parts in performances. The Bach Cantata Pilgrimage of 2000 must be regarded as the most spectacular project in the Monteverdi Choir’s history. This project honored the Leipzig cantor on the occasion of the 250th anniversary of his death with performances of all his extant cantatas in more than 60 European churches; the live recordings of these concerts, which were released on CD, garnered numerous prizes, including the Gramophone Award. The Monteverdi Choir regularly takes part in opera productions, as, for example, Weber’s Le Freyschütz (in the Berlioz version), Chabrier’s L’Étoile, and Bizet’s Carmen at the Opéra-Comique in Paris and Gluck’s Orphée et Eurydice at the Royal Opera House in London. In December 2015 the singers performed in Janáček’s Glagolitic Mass with the Zurich Tonhalle Orchestra, and in the fall of 2016 they sang in Mendelssohn’s Lobgesang with the London Symphony Orchestra and the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra. The entire year of 2017 is devoted to their next Monteverdi project: to mark the 450th anniversary of the composer’s birth, the Choir is undertaking a seven-month tour performing the three operas L’Orfeo, Il ritorno d’Ulisse in patria, and L’incoronazione di Poppea, which will also be presented in Venice, Salzburg, Berlin, Paris, Chicago, and New York. The Monteverdi Choir’s patron is the Prince of Wales.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 2 September 1994 in Mozart’s Thamos, König in Ägypten and C minor Mass.

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    Sir John Eliot Gardiner

    Sir John Eliot Gardiner was born in 1943 in County Dorset. He initially studied history and Arab studies before completing his musical training at Cambridge University, as well as with Nadia Boulanger in Paris. He founded the Monteverdi Choir in 1964 and, in 1968, the Monteverdi Orchestra, from which he later formed the English Baroque Soloists. In 1989 Gardiner launched the Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique, which similarly performs on original instruments but is predominantly dedicated to music of the 19th century. He has moreover collaborated with many leading orchestras. In the 2016-17 season, for example, he was a guest artist with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra, the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra, and the London Symphony Orchestra; in June 2016, following a ten-year hiatus, he returned to the Berlin Philharmonic. As an opera conductor, Gardiner has led many productions at the Châtelet in Paris and at Covent Garden in London; for the Monteverdi trilogy he is performing in nine countries in 2017, he is also appearing as a director. Since 2014 he has served as Chairman of the Board of the Bach Archive in Leipzig. In the 2014-15 season he was a Visiting Scholar at Harvard University. Sir John Eliot Gardiner has recorded more than 250 CDs, which have received such distinctions as the Gramophone Award, the German Record Critics’ Prize, and the ECHO Klassik. His book Bach: Music in the Castle of Heaven (2013) won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2014 and was published in German translation in the fall of 2016. In 1998 John Eliot Gardiner was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II, and in 2005 he received the Bach Medal of the City of Leipzig and the Sonning Music Prize. Gardiner is a Commandeur dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and a Chévalier de la Légion d’Honneur.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 2 September 1994 with Mozart’s Thamos, König in Ägypten and the Mass in C minor.

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    Elsa Rooke

    A native of Paris, the director Elsa Rooke studied literature and music at the Sorbonne and was trained as an acting coach by Alain Garichot at the École de l’Opéra de Paris. In this capacity she has taught numerous young singers, including those in William Christie’s “Jardin des Voix,” as well as those at the music academies of Lausanne and Geneva, and especially at the École de la comédie de St. Étienne. She has worked closely with Adrian Noble, the long-standing director of the Royal Shakespeare Company, whose productions she has staged in performances in cities from New York to Moscow. Rooke has staged productions of her own for the opera companies in Lausanne, Bordeaux, Lyon, Geneva, and the Théâtre des Champs-Élysées, including Britten’s The Turn of the Screw, Rossini’s La cenerentola, Mozart’s Idomeneo, and Humperdinck’s Hänsel und Gretel. Elsa Rooke is also a librettist and translator and has published novellas.

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    Furio Zanasi

    Early music from the madrigal to Baroque opera is the focus of the Italian baritone Furio Zanasi’s work. He performs this repertoire with such ensembles as Hespèrion XX, the Concerto Italiano, the Collegium Vocale Gent, and the Cappella della Pietà de’ Turchini. He has made guest appearances around the world, including at the Vienna Konzerthaus and at Carnegie Hall in New York, as well as in Paris, Salzburg, South America, and Japan. Such conductors as Ivor Bolton, Riccardo Chailly, Thomas Hengelbrock, Philippe Herreweghe, René Jacobs, and Jordi Savall have engaged him for their concerts. Since making his operatic debut as Marcello in La bohème in 1987, Furio Zanasi has appeared on many Italian stages, as well as at the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, the Dresden Semperoper, the Berlin Staatsoper, and in Brussels and Madrid. Monteverdi’s Ulisse is one of his signature roles, which he has also performed at La Scala in Milan.

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    Lucile Richardot

    The French mezzo-soprano Lucille Richardot worked as a journalist until she was 27. She earned her musical diploma in 2008 with the Maîtrise de Notre-Dame and also earned a degree in early music at the Conservatoire à Rayonnement Régional de Paris in 2011. She founded her own ensemble, Tictactus, in 2012, but she additionally performs with such other groups as the Solistes XXI and Rachid Safir, Correspondances and Sébastien Daucé, Pygmalion and Raphaël Pichon, Le Poème Harmonique and Vincent Dumestre, and Les Arts Florissants. Lucille Richardot also performs contemporary music. She took part in the world premiere of Philippe Boesmans’ opera Yvonne at the Opéra Garnier in Paris and appeared at the Festival d’Automne with the Ensemble intercontemporain in Nono’s Omaggio a Kurtág. In the spring of 2017, she performed  with Collegium 1704 and Václav Luks in Vivaldi’s Arsilda in Bratislava, Lille, Caen, Luxembourg, and Versailles.

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    Hana Blažiková

    The Czech soprano Hana Blažiková, who was born in 1980, studied musicology at Charles University in her native Prague and voice with Jiří Kotouč at the city’s Conservatory. She has taken master classes with such figures as Peter Kooij and Howard Crook. Hana Blažiková specializes in music from the Middle Ages to the Baroque. She works with such ensembles as Philippe Herreweghe’s Collegium Vocale Gent, Masaaki Suzuki’s Bach Collegium Japan, Ton Koopman’s Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, Christina Pluhar’s L’Arpeggiata, and Václav Luks’ Collegium 1704. Credits include performances at the Edinburgh Festival, the Utrecht Early Music Festival, the Regensburg Early Music Festival, the Resonanzen Festival in Vienna, and the Leipzig Bach Festival. Over 30 CDs document her artistry. Hana Blažiková also plays the Gothic harp, on which she accompanies herself. She is also a member of the Tiburtina Ensemble, which specializes in Gregorian chant.

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    Krystian Adam

    The Polish tenor Krystian Adam studied at the Warsaw Academy of Music and the Conservatorio “Giuseppe Verdi” in Milan. In 2007 he made his debut in the world premiere of Fabio Vacchi’s Teneke at La Scala in Milan. Other credits include Mozart’s Figaro and Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur at the Royal Opera House in London and Mozart’s Idomeneo at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice; Riccardo Chailly engaged him for performances of Puccini’s La fanciulla del West, and Claudio Abbado invited him to appear in concerts with the Orchestra Mozart. Adam is also intensively devoted to the music of the 17th and 18th centuries and has worked in historically informed practice with such conductors as Giovanni Antonini, Jean-Christophe Spinosi, Teodor Currentzis, Rinaldo Alessandrini, Václav Luks, and Raphael Pichon. He has collaborated with Sir John Eliot Gardiner in touring performances of Monteverdi’s Vespers and L’Orfeo

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    Francisco Fernández-Rueda

    The tenor Francisco Fernández-Rueda, who was born in Seville, began his musical training on clarinet and initially earned a degree in French philology before taking up vocal studies at the Escola Superior de Musica in Barcelona. He is a graduate of William Christie’s “Jardin des Voix,” which has been a formative influence. Since then Fernández-Rueda has also worked with Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Jordi Savall, Raphaël Pichon, Konrad Junghändel, and Fabio Biondi, performing at the Opéra Comique in Paris and the Opéra Royal de Versailles, the Schwetzingen Festival, the Baden-Baden Festspielhaus, the Brooklyn Academy of Music, and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. His opera repertoire includes Mozart’s Don Ottavio (Don Giovanni), Handel’s Bajazet (Tamerlano), Monteverdi’s Orfeo, and Narete in Hasse’s Leucippo. He took part in the rediscovery of Lully’s Atys under the direction of William Christie.

    April 2017

    Robert Burt

    A native of London, the tenor Robert Burt studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. The parasitic sponger Iro from Monteverdi's Ulisse is considered one of his signature roles, which he has sung at companies including Chicago Opera Theater, Opera North, Deutsche Oper am Rhein, the Grand Opéra de Genève, and the Teatro Real in Madrid, as well as in Aix-en-Provence and New York; he also recorded the role with William Christie on DVD. Other credits include at the Glyndebourne Festival (in Purcell’s The Fairy Queen), the Royal Opera House and English National Opera in London, the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, and the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona. Thanks to his talents as a performer, he has occasionally worked as an actor as well: he was a member of Trevor Nunn’s National Theatre ensemble and appeared onstage for three seasons in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Robert Burt has also appeared as a performer in musicals.

    April 2017

    Zachary Wilder

    A native of Los Angeles, the tenor Zachary Wilder pursued his training at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester and at the Moores School of Music at the University of Houston. In 2013 he was accepted as a fellow into William Christie’s academy “Le Jardin des Voix”; since then he has also performed with Christie’s ensemble Les Arts Florissants throughout Europe and the United States. Additional credits include with the Les Talens Lyriques, the Collegium Vocale Gent, the Bach Collegium Japan, and the Ensemble Pygmalion. He has sung in Handel’s Messiah for San Francisco Symphony and in Haydn’s Seven Last Words for the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris. Zachary Wilder has appeared at the Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, the Boston Early Music Festival, the Opéra Royal de Versailles, and the Kunstfestspiele Herrenhausen. His discography includes Rameau’s Zaïs with Les Talens Lyriques, Félicien David’s Le Désert, and Zamponi’s Ulisse nell’isola di Circe.

    April 2017

    Anna Dennis

    The English soprano Anna Dennis studied with Noelle Barker at the Royal Academy of Music in London. She has performed with the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and dem BBC Symphony Orchestra at the BBC Proms and works with the Gulbenkian Orchestra in Lisbon and the Australian Chamber Orchestra. Among Anna Dennis’ operatic credits are performances at the Gluck Festival in Nuremberg, the Göttingen Handel Festival, English National Opera, and Opera North in Leeds. In addition to the Baroque repertoire, she performs contemporary music. She has appeared in such works as Thomas Adès’ Life Story together with the composer at Lincoln Center in New York and in Edward Rushton’s The Shops at the Bregenz Festival; she was part of the ensemble in Francisco Coll’s Café Kafka at the Royal Opera House in London and sang in Yannis Kyriakides’ An Ocean of Rain at the Aldeburgh Festival.

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    John Taylor Ward

    The bass John Taylor Ward was born in 1986 in North Carolina. He gave his first performances as a boy soloist before studying voice at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester and completing his education with graduate studies in early music and art song at the Yale School of Music. John Taylor Ward has sung Manoah in Handel’s Samson under Nicholas McGegan at Lincoln Center in New York; he has also performed in Heinrich Schütz’ Fili mi, Absalon and in Peter Maxwell Davies’ Songs for a Mad King under the composer’s baton at Carnegie Hall. Peter Sellars directed him in Kaija Saariaho’s Passion de Simone and William Christie invited him to participate in his “Jardin des Voix.” John Taylor Ward has also worked with Masaaki Suzuki’s Bach Collegium Japan, the Collegium Vocale Gent, and the ensembles L’Arpeggiata and Roomful of Teeth. He has appeared at the Ravinia Festival and at the Boston Early Music Festival. 

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    Francesca Boncompagni

    Born in 1984 in Arezzo, the soprano Francesca Boncompagni initially earned her degree in violin in Siena before studying voice with Donatella Debolini in Florence and taking master classes with Lia Serafini, Jill Feldman, Sara Mingardo, and Alessio Tosi. She participated in William Christie’s “Jardin des Voix” in 2007 and, in 2008, won first prize in the Concorso di Canto barocco Francesco Provenzale. Since then Francesca Boncompagni has performed with such ensembles as the Collegium Vocale Gent, Les Arts Florissants, Les Musiciens du Louvre, the Accademia Bizantina, and La Venexiana. Credits include appearances at the Palazzetto Bru Zane in Venice, the Tonhalle in Zurich, the Salle Pleyel and Cité de la Musique in Paris, the Alte Oper Frankfurt in, the Berlin Philharmonie, the Tokyo Bunka Kaikan, and Lincoln Center in New York. She earlier worked with Sir John Eliot Gardiner in 2015 in productions of Monteverdi's L’Orfeo and Vespers.

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    Francesca Biliotti

    The alto Francesca Biliotti, a native of Venice, studied at the Luigi Bocconi University in Milan and at the Conservatorio Guido Cantelli in Novara. She began her career as the winner of the Concorso Francesco Albanese in 2012. She attended the Accademia di belle arti in Spoleto in 2013, where she took master classes led by Lella Cuberli and Renato Bruson and performed the title role in Mario Guido Scappucci’s Euridice. Since then she has appeared in a program of cantatas at the Tuscia Opera Festival and has appeared as Maddalena in Verdi’s Rigoletto in Brescia, has sung in Rossini’s L’italiana in Algeri and La cenerentola at the Teatro Nuovo in Turin, and has performed in Vivaldi’s Dixit Dominus with the Moscow Soloists and Yuri Bashmet. She has appeared as Gluck’s Orfeo at the Teatro Olimpico in Vicenza. Francesca Biliotti’s concert repertoire includes such works as Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, Handel’s Messiah, and Mozart’s Requiem.

    April 2017

    Silvia Frigato

    The Italian Soprano Silvia Frigato studied voice and piano at the Adria Conservatory in Modena and at the Accademia Chigiana in Siena. She specialized in early music, taking courses with Roberta Invernizzi, Sara Mingardo, and Lorenzo Ghielmi. After winning the Concorso di canto barocco Francesco Provençal Competition in 2007, she worked with such conducers as Rinaldo Alessandrini, Fabio Biondi, Ottavio Dantone, Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Philippe Herrweghe, and Sigiswald Kuijken. Silvia Frigato has performed the title role in Caccini’s L’Euridice at the Innsbrucker Festwochen and sang in Monteverdi’s Poppea at La Scala in Milan. Other credits include Gluck’s Orfeo and Debussy’s Pelléas at the Maggio Musicale in Florence (with Daniele Gatti conducting) and Biber’s Missa Salisburgensis at the Salzburg Festival, under the direction of Václav Luks. She appeared at the Teatro La Fenice in Venice in 2016 as Martinů’s Mirandolina.

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    17:30 | Introduction to the Concert with Susanne Stähr | KKL Luzern, Auditorium
    (in German)