If I ruled the world…

… or at least if I ruled the COC and could design a fantasy season what would I do?

Design parameters:

  • Seven productions (because that’s what COC does).
  • Has to be balanced in the sense that it can’t all be obscurities I want to see.
  • Has to appeal to a reasonably wide audience but I’m not giving in to the sort of people who want to see Zeffirelli direct La Traviata every year.
  • Not constrained by some productions being long and expensive.

So here’s my list with directors:

  • Gluck – Iphigénie en Aulide (Robert Carsen) – why not? The other two worked out pretty well.
  • Puccini – Turandot (Tim Albery) – there’s surely an opera in there somewhere.
  • Purcell – The Indian Queen (Jonathan Kent) – can Kent and, preferably, William Christie do for The Indian Queen what they did for The Fairy Queen?
  • Wagner – Rienzi (Stefan Herheim) – the Wagner piece for the “Occupy $placename” era and who better to bring that out?
  • Berlioz – Les Troyens (Keith Warner) – looking for the same sort of sensibility that Warner brought to the ROH Ring, though not necessarily the same aesthetic.
  • Britten – Owen Wingrave (Christopher Alden) – this just feels right
  • Donizetti – L’Elisir d’Amore (Peter Sellars) – a family and geriatric pleasing comedy is compulsory. So let’s subvert it.

I’m a bit disappointed that I haven’t managed to fit in anything later than 1970.  Birtwistle’s Minotaur or Gawain would have been good or Peter Maxwell Davies’ The Lighthouse.  I guess if one wanted the whole place to implode there’s Death of Klinghoffer but I suspect that in Toronto that would turn into Death of General Director.  No room, either, for one of the less often produced Strauss works.  I’d like to see Die ägyptische Helena or Die Frau ohne Schatten.  There’s perhaps a place too for something from the French baroque, little as I like the genre, if only to show Toronto that there are alternative ways of doing early opera.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s