Mark Elder

'Sir' Mark Elder, recognized as one of the great batons of the international circuit, directs the symphonic poem 'A Hero's Life' ('A hero's life'), by Richard Strauss', Y 'Symphony of the Psalms', de Igor Stranvinsky in Valencia and Castellón de la Plana.

The prestigious British conductor makes his debut with the Choir of the Generalitat and the Orchestra of the Valencian Community (OCV) in the last of the concerts of the cycle ‘Les Arts és Simfònic’, scheduled on friday, 10 of June, at Palau de les Arts (20.00 h), And the saturday 11 in the Auditorium and Congress Center of Castellón de la Plana (19.30 h).

The current conductor of the Manchester Hallé Orchestra and principal guest conductor of the Bergen Philharmonic conducts the most important ensembles in Europe and the United States. Architect of the artistic growth of the English National Opera, combines the symphonic repertoire with the operatic, with works in London's Covent Garden, the Opéra de Paris or the Metropolitan in New York.

for his debut, 'Sir' Mark Elder proposes two works of fascinating sound and technical complexity with which to enjoy the excellence of the stable bodies of Les Arts, that this month they have culminated with excellence one of their greatest artistic challenges with the premiere of 'Wozzeck' in Valencia.

Igor Stravinsky composed 'Symphony of Psalms' as a commission to celebrate the 50 anniversary of the Boston Symphony. Based on three psalms from the Book of Psalms of David and dedicated 'to the glory of God', this choral symphony is considered one of the most brilliant sacred works of the s. XX.

Attached to the neoclassical period of the composer, is divided into three movements that are executed without interruption. The austere and unique orchestration, which excludes violins, violas and clarinets, the intervention of the choir, that interprets the texts extracted from the versions of the 'Vulgate' in Latin, generate a disturbing sound with which Stravinsky reaches the highest levels of spiritual elevation.

The Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana will close the symphonic cycle with one of the most complex and committed works of the great repertoire, 'A Hero's Life', Richard Strauss, brilliant score, energetic and endowed with an impressively rich orchestral color.

compound 1898, Strauss's last symphonic poem is an allegory in which the author portrays, through the heroic lexicon, the artist's life. Configured in six movements, contains melodic allusions to earlier tone poems, as a musical autobiography.

'A hero's life' it, Besides, one of the essential works in the trajectory of the OCV, with which he made his acclaimed debut at the National Auditorium in Madrid in 2010 under the direction of Zubin Mehta.

Mark Elder

‘Sir’ Mark Elder has been Music Director of the Manchester Hallé Orchestra since 2000. From September 2022 will be Principal Guest Conductor of the Bergen Philharmonic. Previously he held the positions of musical director of the English National Opera (1979-1993) and the Rochester Philharmonic, NY (1989-1994), as well as Principal Guest Conductor of the London Mozart Players and the City of Birmingham Symphony and the BBC.

The British maestro conducts the most important orchestras on the international scene: Concertgebouw, Paris, Budapest Festival, Berlin and London Philharmonics and the Boston and Chicago Symphonies. He is principal artist of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment, regularly collaborates with the London Symphony and has conducted at the Proms for many years.

Its presence is also habitual in the main opera houses: Covent Garden, Metropolitan, the operas of Paris and Chicago or the Glyndebourne Festival. He has also been invited to the Bayreuth Festival (where he was the first English director to direct a new production), Munich, Amsterdam, Zurich, Geneva, Berlin and the Bregenz Festival.

Elektra, Palau Arts

He Palau de les Arts delves into the German repertoire ‘Elektra’, Richard Strauss, essential work in the programming of international opera houses, which meets in Valencia to leading figures in the international opera scene.

Marc Albrecht, on the podium, Y Robert Carsen, In the scene, Arts debut in this title, demanding score and complex drama that will debut next 18 from January.

The German conductor and Canadian creator face the last weeks of testing in Valencia, with stable bodies of the theater, Cor de la Generalitat and the Orquestra de la Comunitat Valenciana, along with a cast of performers recognized.

Swedish soprano Irene Theorin (Elektra), critically acclaimed in this role, leads the trio protagonist who plays psychodrama retractor Strauss, with German mezzo veteran Doris Soffel as Klytämnestra and American soprano emerging Sara Jakubiak el and the role Chrysothemis.

Libretto by Hugo von Hofmannsthal, based on the homonymous Sophocles, Elektra is considered one of the scores of greater difficulty both vocals orchestra, what, in his day, It became the largest used for an opera.

Marc Albrecht, baton expert in the work of Strauss and Wagner and recent winner at the Opera Awards 2019 in the category of Best Music Director, OCV recovered with a repertoire with the starting lineup of Les Arts has reached its highest levels of excellence with titles such as 'Der Ring des Nibelungen', 'Parsifal' or 'Salome'.

Meanwhile, Robert Carsen, presented to the Valencian public a production of the Opéra National de Paris, based on an original co-production of the Theater of the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino and Tokyo Opera Nomori, with sets by Michael Levine, Vazul wardrobe Matusz, own and Peter van Praet and choreography by Philippe Giraudeau lighting.

Renowned for his great showmanship and aesthetics maintained their mounts, Carsen offers a chilling vision of 'Elektra', expressive of great strength and deep symbolism.

The premiere of 'Elektra' will take place on Saturday 18 from January. Les Arts has scheduled four other functions of Richard Strauss's opera day 21, 24, 27, Y 30 from January.

Photograph: Miguel Lorenzo


Capriccio, Strauss, a gift insperado at the Royal Theater
Richard Strauss (1865-1949)
Teatro Real in Madrid, 31 May 2019
Conversation piece for music en un acto
Record of Joseph Gregor, Richard Strauss y Clemens Krauss, based on the original idea of ​​Stefan Zweig
Released in the Staatsoper in Munich on 28 October 1942
Premiere at the Royal Theater, in co-production with
Opera de Zúrich
D. musical: Asher Fisch
D. scene: Christof Loy
Scenographer: Raimund Orfeo Voigt
igurinista: Klaus Bruns
illuminator: Franck Evin
Choreographer: Andreas Heise
Distribution: Marlin Bystrom, Josef Wagner, Norman Reinhardt, André Schuen, Christof fish eaters, Theresa Kronthaler, John Graham-Hall, Leonor Bonilla, Juan José de León, Torben Jüngens, Emmanuel Faraldo, Pablo Garcia-Lopez, Tomeu Bibiloni, David Oller, Sebastiá Peris, davil Sánches, Elizabeth McGorian and Julia Ibáñez
Titular Orchestra of the Teatro Real¿Quién, amid one of the worst moments that crossed the world, I could stop and think and compose an aristocratic refinement as Capriccio? Richard Strauss and Stefan Zweig were able to develop an intellectual debate on the opera itself, the manner of Plato's dialogues. And maybe they did, simply, as evasión.Una method opera on the opera. This was the theme Richard Strauss choice for the last of his compositions, the eternal debate about whether to prevail music or text.
The story had begun years ago, when you start searching for a new librettist, after the death of Hugo von Hofmannsthal, in 1929, which until then he had been his main collaborator and author of the libretto of all his compositions. In his next opera, the silent (The Silent Woman), composed 1934, It takes over the text one of the most important writers of the time, Austrian Stefan Zweig. parallel, Diving in the British Museum Library, Zweig is the script he had written Gionavanni Batista Castri debut for music, after the words, the composer Antonio Salieri. A Strauss liked the idea, but they were forced to postpone the project to the problems that the premiere of the silent woman had caused. He had called for the withdrawal of librettist Name Poster, something that Strauss refused. It came Brand, but he withdrew after a few days.For then had already been banned in Germany Zweig's books. The Jewish Zweig, as he was known by the Nazi regime, he was forced into exile, like many other intellectuals from 1933. He went from being a distinguished foreigner wandering Jew in the Brazilian city of Petrópolis, where he committed suicide with his wife in 1942, fearing that the world had known desapareciera.El sketch libretto by Capriccio initiated by Zweig was retaken, first by Joseph Gregor, and then by Strauss himself and his friend, the conductor Clemens Krauss. It would then director of Capriccio at its premiere. And his wife, ucraniana-Austrian soprano Viorica the Ursuleac, would be the first Countess Madeleine. This time there was no problem at its premiere. The fact that Clemens Kraus was at that time the most powerful man in German opera and personal friend of Goebbels, He helped a lot. Also he helped himself, despite its good relationship with the regime, the flight of many Jewish artists, mainly to the United States.

In preparing Capriccio also attended by director Hans Swarosky, who provided one of the fundamental elements of the opera, a sonnet by the French poet Pierre Ronsard sixteenth century. A declaration of love which is declaimed by Madeleine, especially in the final scene:

I would need to look for other veins
Mine are so full of your love
Another love could not stand

The same year died Zweig, 1942, Capriccio was premiered at the Munich Staatsoper 28 October. Now is the Royal Theater which debuts, in co-production with the Zurich Opernhaus.

When Strauss and Zweig started thinking about Capriccio, they could not agree on whether it should be an opera or a play. Certainly, opera is more like a play that can be. In that, as in other aspects, Capriccio is full of originality and peculiarities.

Christof Loy, helped by the set designer Raimund Orfeo Voigt, He created a bright scenery, full of deliciousness, Empty surface elements and references fill depth this dialogue opera. It is a choral work, It composed of all the characters involved in production, director, composer, librettist, scenographer, singers… It is filled with scenes set in which the actors / singers move and interpreted entirely theatrically, without dramatic excess conventional opera. What fills the development of the scenes of realism and credibility. The scenery is nothing casual. Loy is responsible for directing all the details and does it work with incredible precision. The scenes move smoothly and naturally, as if it were really happening. With very few elements recreates all the thoroughness that holds the score. And all with a feature always present, the elegance.

Asher Fisch music director has achieved an extraordinary result of the Titular Orchestra del Teatro. The initial string sextet, one chamber music piece that highlights the originality of the work, demonstrates the soundness of the Orchestra. The scene and the pit walk in unison fluidity and musicality. Fisch gets the same intensity and sound quality along the more than two-hour representation, with a score full of difficulties and constant changes. All strings sounded exceptionally, but, In addition sextet, excelled horn soloist Ramón Cueves, especially in the interpretation of the Serenade for horn and orchestra of the last scene.

The two lovers vying for the love of Madeleine were interpreted by André Schuen, as Olivier and Norman Reinhardt, as Flamand. The Italian baritone André Schuen and recently surprised us in the Lied at the Teatro de la Zarzuela. Recreate well his role as poet with perfect phrasing and a voice of beautiful timbre and great sound and depth. impeccable theatrically, like the rest of the cast.

Norman Reinhardt played the musician Flamand. His voice light tenor sounded a little forced at times, but he learned to live up assembly. Smart also in his stage performance.

Josef Wagner played the Count, one of the Christof Loy details of the baroque, to make him appear on stage with period costumes. Perfect performance and dark timbre resounding, ideal for the character.

The Swedish soprano Malin Byström gave life to the Countess Madeleine. And really she filled life. Its elegant and aristocratic bearing are perfect for the character and his voice, lyric soprano, perfect for phrasing sung his numerous dialogues supported by a powerful and necessary fiato. Its peak, and the work, It was its glossy finish, that romantic and delicate song of love sonnet by Pierre Ronsard. He mimicked his character absolutely, that could not be more credible. It was perfectly accompanied by her child replicas, Julia Ibáñez and almost old, Elizabeth McGorian.

Interesting were also interventions Theresa Kronthaler, in the role of Clairon. mezzosoprano that, in addition to its good performance voice, He demonstrated his stage training.

Leonor Bonilla and Juan José de León performed superbly to light Italian singers. Winking Strauss to perfectly imbricated Italian opera in the work.

Octet scene servants is another element to highlight in this opera. Both the baroque costumes, all white, as the layout stage. Perfect figurines Klaus Bruns and choreography by Andreas Heise.
To round out this very balanced distribution, both vocally, and the interpretive, citar a John Graham-Hall, como Mr. Mole there Torben Jungens, Butler made.

The Teatro Real has accustomed us, at least, a surprise season. Nobody expects something exceptional. This time, You can say that is the surprise of the bicentennial, The Real. An unexpected gift that justifies, by itself, a season.

Text: Paloma Sanz
Images: Javier del Real
Videos: Teatro Real


ABAO-OLBE (Bilbao Association of Friends of the Opera) Program Salome, Opera considered the boldest, short and perfect Strauss and one of the musical gems of German expressionism. The following days 17, 20, 23 Y 26 February, sponsored by the BBVA Foundation, sponsor of ABAO-OLBE, up to this title scene is represented for the second time in the season bilbaína.

This musical drama in one act, based on the novel by Oscar Wilde, contains moments of disturbing sensuality that some have described as "symphonic lust". To give life to the protagonists of this sublime song of love and death, ABAO-OLBE has assembled a cast led by the American soprano Jennifer Holloway, one of today's great 'Salome', who appears in Bilbao after debuting this role in 2016 at the Sächsische Staatsoper in Dresden to enormous critical and public acclaim. At his side debut in ABAO two of the most esteemed voices in this repertoire: the tenor Daniel Brenna like 'Herod' and the bass-baritone Remove Egils como ‘Jochanaan’. The consecrated soprano closes the leading quartet IIdiko Komlósi like 'Herodias'. Together with them, the tenor completes the extensive poster Mikeldi Atxalandabaso as 'Narraboth', mezzosoprano Monica Minarelli as 'The Page of Herodias' in the functions of the 17 Y 20 February and hope Mentxaka in those of 23 Y 26 February, tenor debuts Once Josep, Miguel Borrallo, Igor Peral Y Jordi Casanova like the 'Jews 1, 2, 3 and 4' respectively, the also debuts of the bass-baritones Michael Borth as 'Jew 5' and Manuel Mas as 'Cappadocian', bass-baritone Alberto Arrabal as 'Nazarene 1', the tenor Alberto Nuñez as 'Nazarene 2', the debut of the soprano Helena Orcoyen as 'Slave', baritone Jose Manuel Diaz as 'Soldier 1' and the bass Mikel Zabala as 'Soldier 2', all of them accompanied by twenty-six actors.

In the pit the Bilbao Symphony Orchestra that under the baton of its principal director Erik Nielsen becomes a decisive character in this impressively orchestrated opera, whose music is characterized by a wide chromatism, a palette of original timbres and a sophisticated leitmotif. The choral part is once again task Bilbao Opera Choir, with Boris Dujin in front.

On stage a production of Francisco Negrín for the Palace of Arts of Valencia showing a society that sleeps on the cushions of its own lies, a sick society, decadent, self-satisfied and smug whose atonement dies when Jochanaan's head is lopped off. The scenery is articulated on a rotating cylinder with spaces loaded with symbolism. The dimmed lighting contributes to creating an overwhelming scene where technological aspects such as screens and video projections are not lacking.

Conference on "Salome"

In order to analyze, in advance the premiere, the most relevant aspects of this Strauss opera, ABAO-OLBE has organized a conference, Free entrance until full capacity, For friday 16 February in the Auditorium of the Museum of Fine Arts (entrance door by Chillida) to 19.15 hours. This time will be Luis Gago, who has been Deputy Director and Head of Radio Programs 2 (RNE), Panel member of serious music of the European Broadcasting Union, Coordinator of the RTVE Symphony Orchestra and the Royal Theater Editor. He has made radio programs for the BBC and is the author of numerous articles and monographs, Book Bach (1995) and the Spanish version of the New Harvard Dictionary of Music. usually prepared Castilian subtitles for the Royal Opera House, the Inglés National Opera and Digital Concert Hall of Berlin Philharmonic. He is editor and music critic Books Review, music critic of El País and codirector, along with Tabea Zimmermann, the Chamber Music Festival of the Beethoven-Haus in Bonn.

BBVA Foundation: an extensive program to bring the best music closer to the public

The BBVA Foundation Culture program pays special attention to music, with an emphasis on contemporary, and in this area it is distinguished by covering the complete cycle: from creation to diffusion, going through the training of interpreters, the recording of works and the recognition of musical excellence. In this way, contributes to increasing the repertoire through composition commissions and ensures its permanence thanks to the reference record collections developed with the NEOS and Verso labels, and unique projects carried out with a wide and prestigious cast of record labels. further, facilitates access to live music through concert cycles at its venues in Madrid and Bilbao, in the National Auditorium, and through continued collaboration with theaters and associations across the country, such as the Bilbao Association of Friends of the Opera (ABAO-OLBE), the Royal Theater and the Gran Teatre del Liceu. Organize cycles of conferences and meetings with leading experts, promotes the international training of young performers through agreements with various institutions, promotes highly innovative projects through the Leonardo Scholarships in Music and Opera, and distinguishes excellence through two families of awards: the BBVA Foundation Frontiers of Knowledge Award for Contemporary Music and the Spanish Association of Symphony Orchestras Composition Award (AEOS)-BBVA Foundation.