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Artistic Director of Schwab Vocal Rising Stars and New York Festival of Song, Steven Blier gives insight into the week of rehearsals at Caramoor.
Rossini’s Aureliano in Palmira was the highlight of the 1813-14 opera season in Milan; Beethoven’s Fidelio debuted in the same season in Vienna. The first was forgotten for over a century; the second was quickly revered as the unique masterpiece it is. We are bringing them together again at Caramoor for 21st-century operagoers to review history’s verdict. Read more
Originally Published by The New York Times
By Anthony Tommasini
KATONAH, N.Y. — The conductor Will Crutchfield’s Bel Canto at Caramoor program has been bringing eager audiences to this festival here in Westchester County each summer for performances of operas from the early 19th century. On Saturday at Caramoor’s Venetian Theater Mr. Crutchfield turned to a work that couldn’t seem further from the era and style of bel canto: Poulenc’s “Dialogues of the Carmelites,” performed in the original French. First presented in 1957, this austerely beautiful and wrenching opera, loosely based on a historical event — the guillotining of 16 nuns from the Carmelite convent of Compiègne during the French Revolution — owes more to Debussy and Neo-Classical Stravinsky than the bel canto composers of an earlier time. Read more