Published on May 16th, 2012 01:46 AM
Hector Berlioz's Les Troyens is one of the most complex and rewarding operas in the repertory. It's been dubbed "The Latin Ring" for its scale and epic arc. While much shorter than Wagner's masterpiece, Les Troyens is a long opera, originally intended to be presented over two evenings, with an average running time of up to six hours if intermissions are counted.
This series of articles will provide an in-depth analysis of this formidable work, which has not enjoyed the popularity that it deserves due to the enormous demands it imposes on an opera company. Les Troyens is not easy to stage, given its vast chorus, long duration, frequent and radical scene changes, and numerous characters. Only the most accomplished opera companies are able to put together a convincing production of this piece, which explains the rarity of its stagings, complete recordings, and video discs.