The Sunday Opera: George Benjamin's "Picture a Day Like This" from the Aix-en-Provence Festival
Two contemporary operas by British composer George Benjamin are on the menu on this week’s Sunday Opera (10/15 3:00 p.m.).
We’ll begin with a surreal piece entitled “Picture a Day Like This” from the Aix-en-Provence Festival. The libretto by Martin Crimp follows the journey of a woman (Marianne Crebassa) who seeks to bring her dead child back to life and must find a truly happy person to achieve this. Her journey brings her into contact with several individuals (Anna Prohaska, Beate Mordal, Cameron Shahbazi, and John Brancy) who all seem happy at first, but that happiness is superficial. Finally, the woman is lead to a glorious garden where she finds her inner peace and happiness. George Benjamin conducts the Mahler Chamber Orchestra.
Our second Benjamin opera also features the composer at the podium. This opera is a retelling of “The Pied Piper of Hamelin” that is open for interpretation in several ways. “Into the Little Hill” features a soprano (Hila Plitmann) and contralto (Susan Bickley) who each embody five roles in this short opera that is supported by the London Sinfonietta.
We’ll continue in the world of fairytales and fantasy with some glorious music from the pen of Sergei Prokofiev and his ballet “Cinderella.” For this, the WDR Symphony Orchestra, Koln is conducted by Michail Jurowski.