Coproduced with Siberia's Novosibirsk Opera, this new Macbeth uses cutting-edge multimedia technology to give the viewer a fresh perspective on the work. Google Earth satellite images plunge us into the heart of the action: a gloomy square surrounded by soulless buildings, and the interior of an aristocratic residence. Witches are no more a part of Tcherniakov's Macbeth that the duel was of Onegin, but once again the atmosphere is one of brooding claustrophobia. Tcherniakov has chosen a great cast, beginning with the marvellous Lithuanian soprano Violeta Urmana as Lady Macbeth. Greek baritone Dimitris Tiliakos is a powerful presence as Macbeth, while the Italians Ferruccio Furlanetto (bass) and Stefano Secco (tenor) are sumptuous as, respectively, Banquo and Macduff. In this, his second production at the Paris Opera, Teodor Currentzis, music director of the Novosibirsk Opera and Ballet Theatre conducts with verve and a splendid theatrical sense.
This program includes some of the least known masterpieces from Ernest Bloch’s nearly 30 works for orchestra. Macbeth: Two Symphonic Interludes is an intoxicating and passionate distillation of Shakespeare’s powerful drama. In Memoriam is a brief elegy dedicated to the pianist Ada Clement, while the Three Jewish Poems were written when Bloch was mourning the death of his father. Originally conceived as a third concerto grosso, Bloch’s last Symphony, in E flat major, is at times emotionally turbulent and deeply spiritual work containing passages of harmonic acerbity.
This score undoubtedly marks an important turning point in Verdi's operatic writing, because it brings to the foreground the characters' introspective, psychological aspect, which would be the fundamental feature of most of the maestro's later creations. This recording documents the production staged at Novara's Teatro Coccia during the 2013-2014 season, with Dario Argento tackling for the rst time the direction of an opera. Verdi's masterpiece was not new to the director from Rome, who had used it as backdrop for his 1987 lm Opera, set at the Teatro Regio in Parma, indeed during a staging of Macbeth. From the master of thriller and horror one could only expect a direction in line with his previous lm-making background, and from that point of view, this Macbeth does not fail expectations, with its bloody, indeed gory scenes; they are, at any rate, consistent with the dark and brutal character of Shakespeare's tragedy. But aside from all of that, Dario Argento's direction reveals extraordinarily theatrical qualities, greatly enhanced by the conducting of Giuseppe Sabbatini who, on the podium, takes tempos that fit perfectly the unrolling of the drama.
Macbeth signifies the beginning of Verdi"s life-long preoccupation with William Shakespeare where he came close to emulating the master with his congenial composition of Othello and whom he even surpassed with Falstaff. Aware of the great musical as well as literary challenge, Verdi wrote the scenario himself and essentially concentrated the piece on three main protagonists: Macbeth, Lady Macbeth and the prophecy of the witches . . . During the first performance on 14 March 1847 in Florence the audience reacted with great displeasure. The piece only gradually established itself in the world of opera. Luca Ronconi’s new production of Verdi’s early masterpiece which was first performed in June 1987 at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin was received in Germany and around the world with great praise.
Fabio Luisi conducts the Metropolitan Opera in this production of Verdi's work, based on Shakespeare's tragic play. Zeljko Lucic stars in the title role with Anna Netrebko as his wife, Lady Macbeth. The cast also includes Joseph Calleja as Macduff and René Pape as Banquo. New York Observer stated: “.. a superstar cast … the most potent: Anna Netrebko's ferociously exciting star turn as Lady Macbeth … a "demented" performance, one so exciting it propels both artist and audience figuratively to the brink of madness.”