Wormsley lawn

A side trip to the breathtaking green fields of Wormsley, home of the Garsington Opera’s summer season, afforded us the chance to hear a splendid Eugene Onegin conducted by Douglas Boyd and starring a magnificent Tatiana: soprano Natalya Romaniw. The Guardian review signaled she is destined for greatness. Then came a real operatic anomaly: the magnum opus of Georges Enesco, an opera called Oedipe or Oedipus that it took him more than twenty years to write. The opera was completed in the early 1930s, but is only now getting its first staged performance ever in the U.K. The production was a tour de force and the music very strange and compelling–though more than a few of our KUSC tour participants confessed to long naps haunted by wailing arias.

Wormsley gardens

Spotted Esa-Pekka Salonen in the audience with his wife, Jane: perhaps opera-shopping for future repertoire? He is now adored at the Met, and elsewhere. The reviews for his Stravinsky Festival here have also been simply glowing, as in: “Esa-Pekka Salonen conducted with clarity, authority and conviction. He is one of the UK’s greatest musical assets – words not said lightly. The concert, essential listening, is on BBC Radio 3.” That’s Fiona Maddocks in the Observer.

Tomorrow, Mahler’s Second Symphony and a farewell dinner. It’s gone too fast!

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