February 6 & 7 at Czech Center New York
C a s s a n d r a
by Michael Jarrell
U.S. Premiere of the illustrated production created by Nimrod Opera Zurich and Czech video artist Dalibor Pys
Performed by Argento Ensemble led by conductor Michel Galante and featuring actress Anna Clementi
|On February 6 & 7 at 7:00 PM, Actress Anna Clementi, conductor Michel Galante, and the Argento Chamber Ensemble perform Swiss composer Michael Jarrell’s opera Cassandra, at Bohemian National Hall, 321 E. 73rd Street in New York City. The performances are free, and are presented by the Czech Center New York in collaboration with the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the Swiss Society in New York, with support from the Swiss Cultural Foundation “Pro Helvetia.” The work will be performed in English.
Cassandra’s libretto, based on Christa Wolf’s 1984 novel of the same name, follows the Trojan priestess as she straddles past and present events in an internal monologue. The protagonist is the daughter of King Priam, ruler of Troy, during the era of its destruction at the hands of the Greeks. She foretells Troy’s destruction, and is forced to helplessly watch its fall, as no one will believe her premonitions
This production is the US premiere of Pamela Hunter’s live-camera illustration of Jarrell’s monodrama for actress, electronics, and 18-piece chamber orchestra. With a unique use of film and live-camera video, the images in the mind of the prophetess Cassandra appear in flashback, intercut with paintings by the Belgian symbolist, Paul Delvaux, as well as scenes of the story line performed by the contemporary dance ensemble of Nimrod Opera Zurich. The production features the work of Czech video artist Dalibor Pys.
Hunter’s production was proclaimed the highlight of Berlin’s MaerzMusik Festival last year, with praise from the media as it “ideally complemented the diverse, vehement sound visions of Jarrell’s exceptional score. … Michael Jarrell could hardly have wished for a more ideally suited interpretation than Pamela Hunter’s visualisation.” (Dietrich Bretz of Der Neuer Merker). Performance details are below. More information is at argentomusic.org.
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(Performed in English)
Monodrama for actress and instrumental ensemble with electronics (1993/1997)
after the epic novel by Christa Wolf in the adaptation by Gerhard Wolf.
Czech Center New York – Bohemian National Hall
321 East 73rd Street, New York NY 10021
February 6 & 7, 2014 at 7:00 pm