Glyndebourne has announced the next two operas that will feature in its virtual festival, Glyndebourne Open House. Barber’s Vanessa (1958) and Handel’s Rinaldo (1711) will be streamed on the Sussex-based company’s YouTube channel at 5pm on 14 June and 21 June respectively, as well as being available on demand for one week after the initial showing.
Having been forced to cancel this year’s festival due to the coronavirus outbreak, Glyndebourne launched its Open House programme on 24 May with a broadcast of Michael Grandage’s 2012 production of The Marriage of Figaro (Mozart, 1786).
The showing attracted almost 60,000 views, with audiences tuning in from all around the world. Many even took the opportunity to recreate the Glyndebourne Festival experience at home by dressing up, preparing picnics and sharing the experience with friends and family.
An operatic thriller from the age of Hitchcock, Samuel Barber’s Pulitzer Prize-winning Vanessa boasts one of the 20th century’s most beautiful scores. Glyndebourne’s 2018 production was directed by Keith Warner and stars British soprano Emma Bell as Vanessa, Lithuanian-born tenor Edgaras Montvidas as Anatol and French mezzo-soprano Virginie Verrez as Erika. Jakub Hrůša conducts the London Philharmonic Orchestra.
Robert Carsen’s riotous schoolroom staging of Rinaldo is well on its way to becoming a Glyndebourne classic, bringing out all the energy and excess in Handel’s first opera for the London stage. The 2011 live recording stars Italian contralto Sonia Prina as Rinaldo, German soprano Anett Fritsch as Almirena, American soprano Brenda Rae as Armida and Italian bass-baritone Luca Pisaroni as Argante. Ottavio Dantone conducts the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment.
Emma Bell as Vanessa and Virginie Verrez as Erika in Barber’s Vanessa.