Twilight of the GodsOpera North’s four-year traversal of Der Ring des Nibelungen reaches the cycle’s overwhelming conclusion. The all-consuming love of Siegfried and Brünnhilde is broken in bitter betrayal; the machinations of Hagen, son of Alberich, seal Siegfried’s doom; and Brünnhilde’s self-immolation precipitates the end of the old world order and the beginning of a new era.The musical and dramatic power of Götterdämmerung is awe-inspiring – from Siegfried’s Rhine Journey, to the mighty chorus of the Gibichung vassals, to Siegfried’s Funeral March, and – above all – to Brünnhilde’s immolation and the work’s titanic orchestral climax.Alwyn Mellor, widely praised for her radiant portrayal of Sieglinde in Opera North’s Die Walküre in 2012, sings the role of Brünnhilde in these performances. She is joined by a cast that also includes the American tenor Daniel Brenna as Siegfried and Susan Bickley as Waltraute. All are under the guidance of Opera North’s Music Director Richard Farnes, whose conducting of the previous instalments of this cycle has been universally acclaimed.Lasts approximately 6 hours 15 minsPlease note: performance time includes two intervals, one of 30 mins, and one of 1 hour 15 mins.Sung in German with English titlesA collaboration with The Sage Gateshead and Symphony Hall, Birmingham.Financially supported by the Opera North Future Fund and The Ring Fellowship.
The genre of the French motet was painstakingly defined by a long line of masters and lesser exponents working at the Louvre and in the royal parishes. In the course of the 17th century they invented the national equivalent of the German cantata. The grand motet, lasting about twenty minutes, was performed at the beginning of the Mass and was one of the three pieces of music heard by the King and his court at the daily religious services. It was followed by a short motet performed during the Elevation, and then by the Domine salvum fac regem, a final motet in which the full range of musical forces were brought into play. An inseparable part of the religious practice of the Ancien Régime, the grand motet is the supreme example of French sacred music. Rameau, who composed for the churches and cathedrals of Avignon, Clermont-Ferrand, Montpellier and Dijon, produced a great number of sacred works to be performed by cathedral choirs. Only three examples from this highly creative period survive: In Convertendo, Deus Noster Refugium and Quam Dilecta Tabernacula. A fourth motet, Exultet coelum laudibus, is thought to have been lost. These works predate Rameau's move to Paris and must first have been heard within the walls of Dijon and Lyon. Joseph Casanéa of Mondonville, a native of Narbonne who died on the hilltops of Belleville, in Paris, was as well-known in his day as Jean-Philippe Rameau and far more celebrated. He conducted the famous Concert Spirituel and his grand motets combine emotion with a dance-like theatricality in perfect harmony with the decorative spirit of Sevandoni, the architect and decorator of Saint-Sulpice and of Saint-Bruno in Lyon.The grand French motet is part of the genetic make-up of Les Arts Florissants who have led the way in the rediscovery of sacred music by Henry Desmarest, Rameau, Campra and Mondonville. Although quite often recorded, such works can only be fully appreciated in full-scale live performance, during which the prodigious talents of William Christie, the orchestra and, in particularl, the chorus of Les Arts Florissants will be displayed to the full. The soloists, who all possess the high degree of technical mastery required by a genre situated between opera and introspection, include Cyril Auvity and Marc Mauillon, two singers of exquisite musicality, the bass Cyril Costanzo, whose talent was discovered at the sixth edition of Le Jardin des Voix, and the sopranos Rachel Redmond and Katherine Watson.Programme Rameau, Quam dilecta Mondonville, Dominus regnavit Mondonville, In exitu Israel Rameau, In convertendo Dominum
Cast Rachel Redmond, Katherine Watson, sopranos Reinoud Van Mechelen, high tenor Cyril Auvity, tenorMarc Mauillon, baritone Cyril Costanzo, bass.
Choir and orchestra of Les Arts FlorissantsWilliam Christie
Clouds Harp Trio and David Douglas(Tenor) present a recital of original compositions, traditional and contemporary songs. The collaboration will see the creation of exciting new arrangements for Voice and Harp Trio.