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)

FESTIVAL BERLIOZ, 18 AUGUST TO 3 SEPTEMBER 2017


Festival Berlioz – La Côte-Saint-André
So British: Berlioz à Londres au temps des expositions universelles
(Berlioz in London at the time of the Universal Exhibitions)

Highlights of the 15-day festival include John Eliot Gardiner and his Orchestre Révolutionnaire
et Romantique in "La Damnation de Faust", a Concert shakespearien featuring music by Berlioz inspired by the bard, conducted by François-Xavier Roth, Handel's Water and Royal Fireworks Music performed by Hervé Niquet's Concert Spirituel; performances by National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain, Orchestre national de Lyon (Paul Daniel), Orchestre de Chambre de Paris (Douglas Boyd), Aurora Orchestra, The King's Consort, London, London Haydn Quartet and the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France under the direction of Roger Norrington in Berlioz's "Nuits d'été" (mezzo-soprano Christine Rice) & "Symphonie fantastique".

Full programme.

PANELS BELOW

1 Details of assistance available from the Society

2 Details of a four-bedroom villa available to rent in the area

3 Further details of Festival Berlioz 2017

"DAMNATION DE FAUST" WITH SIMON RATTLE, 17 & 19 SEPTEMBER 2017

Simon Rattle will open his first concert season with the London Symphony Orchestra as its new Music Director on September 17and 19 2017 with two performances of Berlioz's "Damnation de Faust" in London's Barbican Hall. Karen Cargill will perform the role of Marguerite, with Bryan Hymel as Faust, Gerald Finlay as Mephistopheles and Florian Boesch as Brander. The London Symphony Chorus directed by chorus director Simon Halsey will also participate. On Sunday September 17 at 6pm, Tuesday September 19 at 7pm. On Saturday September 16, an LSO Discovery Day (10am-3.30pm) will focus on the work, with morning discussion on the Faust legend and access to rehearsal.

Saturday September 16, 10.30am - 3.30pm:

Rehearsal of "The Damnation of Faust" / discussion of Faust legend. For details, click here.

Sunday September 17, 6pm - 8.40pm and
Tuesday September 19, 7pm-9.40pm:

Concert - "The Damnation of Faust". For details, click here.

"BERLIOZ IN ITALY" STUDY WEEKEND, LONDON, 2 & 3 DECEMBER 2017

This year, the very popular Study Weekend will focus on Berlioz's ambivalent relationship with Italy.

For more details please click on the box below..

JOHN NELSON RECORDS NEW TROJANS IN STRASBOURG

American conductor and Berlioz specialist John Nelson and a cast of some 250 musicians performed Berlioz's "Les Troyens" opera in Strasbourg over the Easter Weekend at two well-attended concerts which Erato/Warner Classics recorded for release in November 2017.

Leading the cast in a towering interpretation were French-Canadian contralto Marie-Nicole Lemieux (Cassandre), Americans MIchael Spyres (tenor/ Énée) and Joyce DiDonato (mezzo-soprano/Didon) with Nelson conducting the Strasbourg Philharmonic Orchestra.

Click here to download press release

GARDINER TO CONDUCT LES NUITS D'ÉTÉ AT THE BARBICAN, MARCH 11 2018

John Eliot Gardiner will conduct the London Symphony Orchestra in Berlioz's Les Nuits d'été song cycle with mezzo-soprano soloist Ann Hallenberg (along with works by Schumann) at London's Barbican Hall at 7 pm on March 11 2018.

For details please click here.

SYMPHONIE FANTASTIQUE AT FESTIVAL HALL IN JUNE 2018

Paavo Järvi will conduct The Philharmonia Orchestra in a performance of the Symphonie fantastique at London's Royal Festival Hall in a concert starting at 7.30pm on June 3,  2018 - Tickets and details: click here.

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).

SYMPHONIE FANTASTIQUE VOTED SEVENTH GREATEST SYMPHONY IN BBC SURVEY

BBC Music Magazine surveyed 151 conductors working across the world to come up with a list of the 20 great symphonies with Berlioz's Fantastic Symphony in seventh place. Each conductor was asked to name his or her top three symphonies in any order before the magazine processed that into a top 20. Among the conductors polled was Simon Rattle (Beethoven's Third, Bruckner's Eighth, Mahler's Das Lied von der Erde), Marin Alsop (Barber's First, Brahms's Third, Mahler's Second) and Sakari Oramo (Beethoven's Third, Mahler's Third, Sibelius's Fifth). Berlioz and Tchaikovsky were the only two non-German-Austrian composers listed in the Top Ten.

The BBC Music Magazine top 10

1. Beethoven Symphony No 3 (1803)
2. Beethoven Symphony No 9 (1824)
3. Mozart Symphony No 41 (1788)
4. Mahler Symphony No 9 (1909)
5. Mahler Symphony No 2 (1894 rev 1903)
6. Brahms Symphony No 4 (1885)
7. Berlioz Symphonie fantastique (1830)
8. Brahms Symphony No 1 (1876)
9. Tchaikovsky Symphony No 6 (1893)
10. Mahler Symphony No 3 (1896)


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).

FESTIVAL BERLIOZ 2016 - LA CÔTE SAINT-ANDRÉ, SOUTH-EAST FRANCE AUGUST 19-30

Chris Follett attended the Festival Berlioz last month and his report is below - click on the blue button to read it in full.