A short compilation of clips from the first act of the little known ballet by Jules Massenet: La Cigale. The video was recorded in the Teatro Comunale in Treviso in 1988 and features Carla Fracci and Paul Chalmer.
The ballet divertissement Pas de Quatre was choreographed by Jules Perrot in 1845 to music composed by Cesare Pugni, commissioned by Her Majesty’s Theatre in London. It was first seen on 12 July 1845 and was an immediate hit, mainly because it brought together some of the most famous ballerinas of the time: Carlotta Grisi, Fanny Cerrito, and Marie Taglioni. The great Romantic ballerina, Fanny Elssler didn’t wish to take part, so the young Lucile Grahn was the fourth dancer.
In London in 1970 the 29-year-old prima ballerina Natalia Makarova, performing with Leningrad’s Kirov Ballet (now St Petersburg’s Mariinsky Ballet) defected to the West.
Then in the summer of 1988 at the packed 3,200-seat Business Design Centre in London Makarova danced again with her former company, even though her career was ending (she had announced her retirement in 1986). She was 47.
Franco Fagioli’s latest solo album presents rediscovered treasures by Neapolitan opera composer Leonardo Vinci.
Fagioli – the first countertenor to sign an exclusive recording deal with Deutsche Grammophon – teams up once again with the thrilling Il Pomo d’Oro orchestra.
Veni, Vidi, Vinci features a dozen da capo arias, including seven world premiere recordings, with…
More than a gift to their own coffers, Warner Classics in releasing Maria Callas Live is giving fans of La Divina and lovers of opera a meticulously restored collection of some of her finest performances to treasure. It is timed to commemorate the 40th Anniversary of her death in Paris on 16 September 1977. The […]
As a committed fan of BBC 4’s Desert Island Discs, I am delighted that Joyce DiDonato will be revealing her list of eight recordings, a book and a luxury item that she would take if she was to be cast away on a desert island. Of course, it’s the chat between the music that is the captivating aspect […]
The 100th birthday of Elisabeth Schwarzkopf falls on 9 December 2015. She died in 2006, but her recordings are a timeless treasure of the Warner Classics catalogue, like those of her contemporary and friend, Maria Callas. The 31-CD deluxe box set, Elisabeth Schwarzkopf: The Complete Recitals 1952-1974, to be released on 6 November, gathers together all the […]
Joyce DiDonato‘s new album is launched today in North America and Warner Music is giving readers of this blog the opportunity to win one of five signed copies. To open the Wigmore Hall season last year, DiDonato teamed up with Antonio Pappano on the piano, and gave two recitals, which were recorded, and the result is the double-cd Joyce […]
In the week since David LaChapelle’s video with Sergei Polunin went online it has gone viral, even sending this blog offline a couple of times due to the surge in people searching for information about the Ukrainian ballet star. As I write the YouTube views are edging toward five million; just yesterday one million new views […]
Ian Bostridge, one of the leading Schubert tenors of his generation, has just published a book on the composer’s Winterreise song cycle. Winter Journey: The Anatomy of an Obsession is an insightful and deeply personal exploration of what the he calls “an indispensable work of art that should be as much a part of our common experience […]