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The Sunday Opera: Jules Massenet's "Manon" from the Gran Teatre del Liceu Opera in Barcelona

An afternoon of the music of Jules Massenet is on offer during this week’s Sunday Opera (9/3 3:00 p.m.) with the centerpiece being a production of his version of “Manon” from the Gran Teatre del Liceu Opera in Barcelona.

This 1884 opera based on a novel by Abbe Prevost follows the tragic story of Manon Lescaut (Amina Edris) who meets her cousin Lescaut (Jarrett Ott) in Amiens on her way to her life in a convent. She catches the eye of the young nobleman des Grieux (Pene Pati) who is on his way home to visit his father. Their love blossoms, and neither makes their intended trip but go off to Paris together instead. Their happiness is short-lived, however, and Manon finds herself becoming entwined with the morally corrupt de Bretigny (Tomeu Bibiloi) who warns her that des Grieux is going to be abducted by his father (Jean-Vincent Blot) in order to save him from his entanglement with Manon.

Manon’s life further spirals out of control, and she is convicted of being a “woman of ill-fame” and is to be deported. Lescaut and des Grieux get her freed on her way to Arles, but by this time, she is so ill that she dies in des Grieux’s arms.

The conductor of this performance is Marc Minkowski.

Massenet’s music will fill the remainder of the afternoon as we continue with one of his oratorios entitled “Eve” featuring Denia Mazzola, Massimilliano Fichera, and Giuseppe Veneziano. We’ll end with a suite of ballet music from act IV of Massenet’s “Herodiade.”

Michael is program host and host of the WWFM Sunday Opera, Sundays at 3 pm, and co-host of The Dress Circle, Sundays at 7 pm.
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