Monday, 27 February 2017

Today : world première of Ryan Wigglesworth 'The Winter's Tale' in London (ENO)

Today, the English National Opera in London presents the world première of Ryan Wigglesworth's opera The Winter's Tale, with a libretto by the composer adapted from Shakespeare's play.

It is the composer's first opera.
Many years ago, in the grip of a jealous rage, King Leontes caused the death of his loyal wife Hermione and their young son. All seemed lost for him. But now, as spring blossoms, Leontes stands repentant before a statue of his queen, praying for a miracle of redemption. (reproduced from the ENO website)
The cast includes bass baritone Iain Paterson (Leontes), soprano Sophie Bevan (Hermione), mezzo Samantha Price (Perdita), baritone Leigh Melrose (Polixenes), tenor Anthony Gregory (Florizel) and mezzo Susan Bickley (Paulina). The composer conducts the ENO Chorus and Orchestra. Rory Kinnear directs.

According the Schott Music publisher website, the required orchestra is the following :

- 4 flutes (3. doubling piccolo, 4. doubling piccolo and alto flute), 2 oboes, 1 English horn, 3 clarinets (2. and 4. doubling bass clarinets), 2 bassoons, 1 contrabassoon ;
- 4 horns, 4 trumpets, 3 trombones, 1 tuba ;
- timpani and  3 percussionists (including suspended cymblas, anvil, tubular bells, maracas, tam-tam crash cymbal and templblocks) ;
- harp and strings (12-10-8-6-5).

The performance should last about 2 h 05 minutes, including a 25 minutes interval.

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