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Briséïs ou Les Amants de Corinthe, Chabrier: CATECHISTE

Briséïs ou Les Amants de Corinthe

Act 1 of an unfinished opera

Composer: Emmanuel Chabrier
Librettist: Catulle Mendès and Ephraim Mikhaël, based on a ballad The Bride of Corinth by Goethe
Venue and Dates: Usher Hall, Edinburgh
18 August 1994
Concert performance
(part of the Edinburgh Festival)
Conductor: Jean Yves Ossonce
Briséïs : Joan Rodgers
Hylas : Mark Padmore
Le Catéchiste : Simon Keenlyside
Stratoklès : Michael George
Thanastô : Kathryn Harries
1st Maidservant : Gillian Taylor
2ns Maidservant : Ann Hetherington
Old Sailor : Graeme Danby
Sailor : John Prince
Scottish Opera Chorus
BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra
Notes: This was the works first British performance and was recorded by Hyperion in conjunction with BBC Radio 3.

Click here for details:

Briséïs CD: Emmanuel Chabrier, Hyperion CDA66803


(also see the reviews for the recording)

Gramophone, August 1995

“…The performance was rightly hailed with acclamation by the Edinburgh Festival audience. Joan Rodgers who as the heroine is on stage throughout the act, copes brilliantly with her cruelly exacting, high-lying part, in which she shows no sign of tiring. The initial scene between her and the fresh-voiced Mark Padmore (whom we have previously heard only in earlier music) is over-long by dramaturgical criteria, but both artists convincingly convey the two lovers’ ecstasy. Kathryn Harries as the mother and Simon Keenlyside as the catechist are both excellent in their demanding roles (Chabrier did not spare his singers). Except for Michael George, whose vibrato becomes disturbing, the whole cast’s enunciation (in very good French) is admirably clear; and the orchestral playing is both eloquent and full of nuance. A decisive first British performance of this hitherto little-known work…”

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