BERLIOZ AT THE 2018 BBC PROMS, 5 SEPTEMBER 2018

There is to be only one sole Berlioz concert at this summer's Proms at the Royal Albert Hall.

Wednesday September 5 at 19:30:

Prom 71: Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique with Sir John Eliot Gardiner at the helm performs an all-Berlioz evening with mezzo-soprano Joyce DiDonato taking the role of Dido in scenes from "Les Troyens", while French violist Antoine Tamestit is the soloist for the "Harold in Italy" Symphony.

Full Programme :

Overture 'Le corsaire' (8 mins)

La mort de Cléopâtre Cantata (21 mins)

The Trojans – Royal Hunt and Storm (10 mins)

The Trojans – Dido’s death scene (7 mins)

Harold in Italy (42 mins)

Ticket office opens May 12 - for further details of the season, please see https://www.bbc.co.uk/proms

FESTIVAL BERLIOZ 2018 - PROGRAMME

The festival (taking place between 18 August and 2 September 2018) is held in Hector Berlioz's birthplace town of La Côte Saint-André, near Grenoble, with concerts in the hilltop Château Louis XI and surrounding villages. This year's theme is "Berlioz Sacré" (Sacred Berlioz), performances including the Grande Messe des Morts conducted by François-Xavier Roth, the sacred trilogy L’Enfance du Christ with the Orchestre de Chambre Nouvelle Aquitaine, and the Messe Solennelle with the Concert Spirituel & Choir under Hervé Niquet.

Also on the bill are two major concerts from Sir John Eliot Gardiner with the English Baroque Soloists and the Orchestre révolutionnaire et romantique - one of Bach cantatas, the other featuring Berlioz's "Le Corsaire" overture, the "Mort de Cléopâtre" cantata and "Harold in Italy" with viola soloist Antoine Tamestit.

For full programme and booking office details please click here.

The Society will as usual assist members attending the festival with accommodation, concert tickets and travel advice - for further details please click the box below.

CARNAVAL ROMAIN PART OF "FRENCH FANCIES" AT RFH, 24 OCTOBER 2018

At 7.30pm at the Royal Festival Hall the London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Enrique Mazzola will play Berlioz's Roman Carnival Overture along with works by Canteloube, Bizet and Gershwin.

For more details of the concert and ticket purchases please click here

"FANTASTIQUE!" LPO AT FESTIVAL HALL, 14 NOVEMBER 2018

AT 7.30pm at the Royal Festival Hal the LPO conducted by Oleg Caetani will play the Symphonie fantastique along with works by Messaien and Gounod.

For further details and to book tickets please click here.

HALLÉ ANNOUNCE BERLIOZ SESQUICENTENNIAL PROGRAMME

As part of its tribute to the life and works of the composer 150 years after his demise, Sir Mark Elder will be conducting the Hallé Orchestra in a performance of "The Damnation of Faust" on  Sunday 10 February 2019 (for details click here) and three performances of Symphonie fantastique, on Thursday 16 and Sunday 19 May 2019, with a matinee performance on Wednesday 22 May.

In addition, Sir Mark will conduct the orchestra in two of Berlioz’s more rarely performed works, Overture: "Benvenuto Cellini" on Thursday 24 January 2019, and Overture: "Les Francs Juges" on Thursday 4 April 2019 - all concerts at the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester.

BERLIOZ SOCIETY STUDY WEEKEND TO FOCUS ON BERLIOZ IN BRITAIN

Berlioz in Britain is the subject of the Berlioz Society’s 16th Annual Study Weekend to be held  at the Art Workers’ Guild, 6 Queen Square, London WC1 on November 24 & 25. Berlioz’s connection  to Britain was strong in his lifetime, for him “there was no city in the world where as much music was consumed as in London”. Britain was the homeland of his great literary heroes Scott, Moore, Byron and Shakespeare and he came to these shores five times between 1847-1855.

The first visits were highly dramatic as he had to endure the financial breakdown of  his business partner, followed in 1848 by temporary exile as the revolution of 1848 tore through Paris. In 1851 he came as a member of the international jury assessing musical instruments at the Great Exhibition, after which he returned to conduct concerts with the New Philharmonic Society and to oversee the ill-fated staging of his opera Benvenuto Cellini at Covent Garden.

Topics will be Berlioz’s activities and reputation in Britain, critical responses to his concerts, the sites he knew in London ; speakers include Berlioz Society President and author David Cairns, Professor Julian Rushton, author of the new Cambridge Berlioz Encyclopedia, Katy Hamilton and Leanne Langley while Society Chairman Alastair Aberdare will interview LSO Principal Clarinet Andrew Marriner.  For further information & bookings please contact helenpetchey.berlioz @gmail.com: tel 020 850 40295.

HOLY TRILOGY AT CHRISTMAS AT THE BARBICAN, 17 DECEMBER 2018

On December 17 at 7.30pm at the Barbican, Edward Gardner will conduct the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in L’Enfance du Christ, with Karen Cargill (mezzo-soprano), Robert Murray (tenor), Étienne Dupuis (baritone) and Matthew Rose (bass).

For further details please click here.

TRISTIA AT THE BARBICAN, 25 JANUARY 2019

On January 25 2019 at 7.30pm at the Barbican, Le Concert Spirituel conducted by Hervé Niquet will perform Tristia along with Requiems by Cherubini and Plantade.

For further details please click here.

PARIS OPERA'S BERLIOZ CYCLE CONCLUDES WITH NEW PRODUCTION OF "LES TROYENS", EARLY 2019

The Opera Bastille is to conclude its current Berlioz Cycle in January and February 2019 with a new production of "Les Troyens" under the baton of Philippe Jordan.

There will be seven performances in all.

 6pm on 25, 28, 31 January 2019,

2pm on 3 February 2019 and 6pm on 6, 9 12 February 2019.

Cast:

La Prise de Troie
Cassandre: Stéphanie d’Oustrac
Ascagne: Michèle Losier
Hécube: Véronique Gens
Énée: Bryan Hymel
Chorèbe: Stéphane Degout

Les Troyens à Carthage
Didon: Elīna Garanča
Anna: Aude Extrémo
Ascagne: Michèle Losier
Énée: Bryan Hymel
Iopas: Cyrille Dubois
Hylas: Bror Magnus Tødenes
Narbal: Christian Van Horn

For further details please click here.

BERLIOZ 150 - SIR SIMON RATTLE TO CONDUCT SYMPHONIE FANTASTIQUE, 5 MAY 2019

Simon Rattle will conduct the LSO in the Symphonie fantastique at a Barbican Hall concert on May 5 2019 to mark the 150th anniversary of the death of Hector Berlioz in 1869.

For further details please click here.

DAMNATION DE FAUST AT GLYNDEBOURNE​, MAY & JUNE 2019

Robin Ticciati will conduct Berlioz's dramatic legend "La Damnation de Faust" in a stage version in On 18 May & 10 July 2019 at Glyndebourne.

Cast: Allan Clayton (Faust), Julie Boulianne (Marguerite), Christopher Purves (Mephistopheles), production Richard Jones. Performances at 7.30pm. For more information please click here

BERLIOZ 150 - "HAROLD IN ITALY" AT THE BARBICAN, 16 JUNE 2019

Principal Guest Conductor Gianandrea Noseda will conduct the LSO, withFrench viola soloist Antoine Tamestit, in a sesquicentennial concert performance of Berlioz's "Harold in Italy" Symphony at the Barbican Hall on June 16 2019 at 7pm. 

For details of tickets etc., please click here.

BERLIOZ AT THREE CHOIRS FESTIVAL, GLOUCESTER, JULY - AUGUST 2019

To mark the 150th anniversary of Berlioz's death, the Three Choirs Festival at Gloucester is to perform three of the master's works:

July 27 2019 (evening concert): La Damnation de Faust with Sarah Connolly, Peter Hoare, Christopher Purves and David Ireland;

July 30 2019 (evening concert): Le Carnaval Romain Overture with works by Elgar and Joubert, perfprmed by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales; and

August 1 2019 (evening concert): Les Nuits d'été Song Cycle, sung by Anna Stéphany (mezzo) with the Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Martyn Brabbins.

"BENVENUTO CELLINI" ON DVD

Naxos have released a DVD of the Terry Gilliam production of "Benvenuto Cellini", premiered at ENO in 2014 (in English) under the baton of Edward Gardner.

The production was mounted at Dutch National Opera and Ballet, Amsterdam on 15 and 18 May 2015, with the original French libretto, and these are the performances recorded on the DVD.

PERSONNEL - Benvenuto Cellini - John Osborn; Giacomo Balducci - Maurizio Muraro; Fieramosca - Laurent Naouri; Le Pape Clément VII - Orlin Anastassov; Francesco - Nicky Spence; Bernardino - Scott Conner; Pompeo - André Morsch; Le Cabaretier - Marcel Beekman; Teresa - Mariangela Sicilia; Ascanio - Michèle Losier.

Dutch National Opera Chorus, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Mark Elder, conductor.

For further details please click here.

"EXPERIENCING BERLIOZ" PUBLISHED IN FEBRUARY 2018

Melinda O'Neal, choral-orchestral conductor and Professor of music at Dartmouth College NH,  published her new book "Experiencing Berlioz - A Listener's Companion" in February 2018.

The link below goes into more detail, along with warm recommendations from fellow Berliozians, and includes a 30% discount offer. 

NEW CAMBRIDGE BERLIOZ ENCYCLOPEDIA NOW PUBLISHED

The Cambridge University Press's new 420-page Cambridge Berlioz Encyclopedia - edited by Julian Rushton - was published on December 7.

For further information please click on the blue box below.

Members are advised that there is a special 20 percent discount
available to them on this encyclopedia - please use the discount code
‘Berlioz’ on the webpage below:

http://admin.cambridge.org/Ber...

ALASTAIR ABERDARE AND DAVID CAIRNS AWARDED MEDALS OF HONOUR BY LA CÔTE SAINT-ANDRÉ

At a ceremony in the Town Hall in early September during the Festival Berlioz 2017, Berlioz Society President David Cairns and Chairman Alastair Aberdare were presented with medals of honour by La
Côte Saint-André Mayor Joël Gullon.

Photograph below by kind permission of Festival Berlioz.

FESTIVAL BERLIOZ, LA CÔTE SAINT-ANDRÉ 2017

Please click the button below to read Chris Follett's report on this year's Festival.

GLYNDEBOURNE "BÉATRICE ET BÉNÉDICT" NOW AVAILABLE ON DVD

The 2016 Glyndebourne production of Berlioz's late opera "Béatrice et Bénédict" - based on Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing" - has been issued in DVD/Blu Ray format - the only official DVD of the work to date ! 

Available from Presto at £20 (£24 for Blu Ray).

Cast: Stéphanie d'Oustrac (Béatrice) ;
Paul Appleby (Bénédict);
Philippe Sly;
Sophie Karthäuser;
The Glyndebourne Chorus & London Philharmonic Orchestra, conductor Antonello Manacorda Stage director Laurent Pelly - Opus Arte: OA1239D DVD) / OABD7219D (Blu Ray)


BERLIOZ SESQUICENTENARY 2019

2019 marks the sesquicentenary - or 150th anniversary - of the death of Berlioz in 1869 and plans are already afoot in France and Britain to celebrate this event. The Berlioz Society's Chairman Alastair Aberdare is heading initiatives in Britain to stage major concerts of the composer's works, while in France, an International Conference is to take place in August 2019 at La Côte Saint-André, Berlioz's birthplace, in cooperarion with the Festival Berlioz and the Musée Hector Berlioz.

Please click the button below for more details (in French and English).

BERLIOZ LETTERS PUBLISHED BY ACTES SUD

The long-awaited ninth volume of the Correspondance générale - entitled "New Letters by Berlioz, his family and contemporaries" - has appeared - with some 300 hitherto unpublished letters - as a continuation of the initial eight volumes published by Flammarion under the editorial supervision of the late Pierre Citron. This latest volume is published by Actes Sud and the Palazzetto Bru Zane, with support from the Association nationale Hector Berlioz, the Musée Hector Berlioz, the Festival Berlioz, Smith College USA and the Fondation d'entreprise La Poste.

This collection is available in French only.

Nouvelles lettres de Berlioz, de sa famille, de ses contemporains
Peter Bloom, Joël-Marie Fauquet, Hugh J. Macdonald, Cécile Reynaud (Editors)

Published by Actes Sud / Palazzetto Bru Zane, 792 pages, price 30 € (available from Musée Hector Berlioz - price includes postage and packing).

 

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