Results 1 to 15 of 15

Thread: Help - how to see Akhnaten?

          
   
    Bookmark and Share
  1. #1
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    9,377
    Post Thanks / Like

    Help - how to see Akhnaten?

    I love Philip Glass' music and I simply adore Satyagraha. If there is one hole in my exposure to various operas that really bothers me, it is Akhnaten. I know that there are available audio-only versions on YouTube, but I much prefer video versions, especially when it's contemporary opera.

    Isn't it true that for some strange reason, Glass never authorized this opera to be recorded on video? Does anybody know more about this, and if it is true, any guesses why?

    In any case, I'm trying to see if anybody here knows of a way to watch Akhnaten on video. I did YouTube searches and found only small fragments.

    If there is no video version I'll bite the bullet and listen to it audio-only but I'm hopeful that someone here will have some hint.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  2. #2
    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    142
    Post Thanks / Like
    I am in the same boat as you on this one. The closest thing to good news is that the Met plans to do it in about 2 years.

  3. #3
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Soave_Fanciulla's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Auckland, New Zealand
    Posts
    5,511
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) View Post
    I love Philip Glass' music and I simply adore Satyagraha. If there is one hole in my exposure to various operas that really bothers me, it is Akhnaten. I know that there are available audio-only versions on YouTube, but I much prefer video versions, especially when it's contemporary opera.

    Isn't it true that for some strange reason, Glass never authorized this opera to be recorded on video? Does anybody know more about this, and if it is true, any guesses why?

    In any case, I'm trying to see if anybody here knows of a way to watch Akhnaten on video. I did YouTube searches and found only small fragments.

    If there is no video version I'll bite the bullet and listen to it audio-only but I'm hopeful that someone here will have some hint.
    No, there is absolutely no video, and yes, I did read somewhere that Glass will not authorise recordings, but I can't remember where. It is infuriating as it's my favourite Glass opera by far. I am even grumpier that I failed to sit through all of it at ENO in the eighties before I became a fan. grrrr.
    Natalie

  4. Likes Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) liked this post
  5. #4
    Opera Lively Media Consultant Top Contributor Member Ann Lander (sospiro)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    UK
    Posts
    3,692
    Post Thanks / Like
    Last edited by Ann Lander (sospiro); December 18th, 2017 at 12:13 PM. Reason: Just noticed the typo!
    "The world calls them its singers and poets and artists and storytellers; but they are just people who have never forgotten the way to fairyland."
    Lucy Maud Montgomery

  6. Thanks Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) thanked for this post
    Likes Clayton liked this post
  7. #5
    Senior Member Involved Member SenaJurinac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Posts
    110
    Post Thanks / Like
    Apparently there IS a DVD from 2004, by Boston Conservatory. As it is found in the library catalogues, you may be able to get it through your local library through exchange:

    http://www.worldcat.org/title/akhnat...tionsView=true

  8. Thanks Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) thanked for this post
    Likes Nemorino, Soave_Fanciulla liked this post
  9. #6
    Senior Member Involved Member SenaJurinac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Posts
    110
    Post Thanks / Like
    I have asked the same question at two German speaking forums, http://www.musikforum.de/ and http://tamino-klassikforum.at/ - and asked about good old VHS tape too. Combined wisdom...

  10. Thanks Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) thanked for this post
  11. #7
    Senior Member Involved Member Nemorino's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    Austin, TX
    Posts
    142
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Soave_Fanciulla View Post
    No, there is absolutely no video, and yes, I did read somewhere that Glass will not authorise recordings, but I can't remember where. It is infuriating as it's my favourite Glass opera by far. I am even grumpier that I failed to sit through all of it at ENO in the eighties before I became a fan. grrrr.
    Could this also be the reason the Live in HD of Satyagraha isn't available on demand? I mean, I can kind of sympathize with the artist: these are meant to be live experiences, and will lose something in facsimile (even more than traditional, story-driven operas)..... but harrumph....

  12. Likes Ann Lander (sospiro) liked this post
  13. #8
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    9,377
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Nemorino View Post
    Could this also be the reason the Live in HD of Satyagraha isn't available on demand? I mean, I can kind of sympathize with the artist: these are meant to be live experiences, and will lose something in facsimile (even more than traditional, story-driven operas)..... but harrumph....
    No, it can't be, because there is a commercial DVD of Satyagraha available. I own it. It isn't very good. The Met version is ten times better. But it is a commercial product so obviously Glass didn't object to it.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  14. #9
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    9,377
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by SenaJurinac View Post
    Apparently there IS a DVD from 2004, by Boston Conservatory. As it is found in the library catalogues, you may be able to get it through your local library through exchange:

    http://www.worldcat.org/title/akhnat...tionsView=true
    Thanks. I'll look into it. There is a review of this performance:

    The Boston Conservatory of Music gave two performances, each with a different cast, of Philip Glass's Akhnaten last week five years to the day after the work's Boston premiere by the Boston Lyric Opera in February 2000. Aside from the pleasure of being able to hear a big contemporary work again so soon, the two productions were so radically different from one another that a whole new perspective on Glass's work could be had.
    Boston Conservatory (as differentiated from the New England Conservatory of Music--although the two do share some resources in NEC's opera productions) has specific theater and dance specialties. The opera department has recently been reorganized and is now under the directorship of the distinguished American baritone Sanford Sylvan, who also directed this production. The opera was presented in the Conservatory's problematic theater which is more of an auditorium with virtually no off-stage space, cramped seating and, at least on this occasion, totally inadequate ventilation. Nevertheless, both performances were sold out with waiting lists and a wholly mixed crowd, particularly as to age, reacted to the work and its highly effective performance with high enthusiasm.
    Sylvan presented this highly ritualistic work as part oratorio, with the chorus standing on risers at the rear with their scores, a decision that did two things — emphasize the static nature of Egyptian religious practice and, I suspect, solve the problem of short rehearsal time. The priesthood, a major antagonistic force in Akhnaten, was treated in a manner Verdi would very much have approved — an implacable, vengeful and controlling obstacle to any deviation from the established norm. Akhnaten and his family life, by contrast, were depicted in a realistic style with great informality, much touching, affection and fun in game playing in the face of crushing hierarchical convention. The climactic scene in which the family is slaughtered by the priests became shocking in its inhuman violence and blatant prejudice.
    Beatrice Jona Affron, who has conducted for Boston Lyric opera and been a cover conductor for the Boston Symphony, led the orchestra in an assured, richly colored performance of Glass's minimalist score. The young cast all performed well with an especially striking vocal performance by Matthew Truss a young African-American countertenor with a brilliant top voice. (Interestingly, the BLO performance lost its noted countertenor lead during rehearsals and a student countertenor from the New England Conservatory learned the role quickly and performed with great assurance--something very right is going on in our music schools here in Boston). Despite the heat and lack of leg room in the theater, the packed house gave the performers a huge reception at the end of an excellent performance.
    I will make one final, possibly controversial, observation: The epidemic of obesity we are being warned of among our young people by health authorities was in full view on stage, among singers in their late teens to mid 20s. My standard is not the unhealthily dieted super model look, but at least six of the leading performers, both male and female, were between 40 and perhaps 130 pounds overweight, causing some of them real difficulty in executing simple stage movement. The problem was exacerbated by the costume designer's inability to fit individual singers (the opera had a different cast for each performance) as flatteringly as he might have liked.

    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  15. #10
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    9,377
    Post Thanks / Like
    It seems like Boston Conservatory recorded both performances, with different cast.

    There is a library 277 miles from me that has the DVDs. Will try to see if my local one would ask them to send them here for a couple of weeks.

    Will write to the Boston Conservatory too.
    Last edited by Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva); December 19th, 2017 at 08:22 AM.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  16. Likes Soave_Fanciulla, Amfortas liked this post
  17. #11
    Senior Member Involved Member SenaJurinac's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Posts
    110
    Post Thanks / Like
    I was not able to find anywhere the pictures of front and back cover of that DVD, and figure out who's the actual publisher

  18. #12
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    9,377
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by SenaJurinac View Post
    I was not able to find anywhere the pictures of front and back cover of that DVD, and figure out who's the actual publisher
    It's probably a limited, local release by the school itself.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  19. #13
    Opera Lively Moderator Top Contributor Member Amfortas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    3,781
    Post Thanks / Like
    If you end up having to go the audio-only route, the one available recording--Dennis Russell Davies and the Stuttgart State Opera--is quite good.

    Just sayin'.

  20. Thanks Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) thanked for this post
    Likes Soave_Fanciulla liked this post
  21. #14
    Opera Lively Staff Member Top Contributor Member Hoffmann's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Arlington, VA
    Posts
    3,371
    Post Thanks / Like
    Be patient. Akhnaten is scheduled to be staged by the Met next season (2018-19) using the LA Opera's production with Anthony Roth Costanza. I've read interviews with Costanza, who discusses his experience with the Brazilian wax he undergoes for his full nude entrance. It's right around the corner!

    The production is killer and Roth is terrific!

  22. Likes Amfortas liked this post
  23. #15
    Opera Lively Site Owner / Administrator / Chief Editor Top Contributor Member Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    North Carolina, USA
    Posts
    9,377
    Post Thanks / Like
    Quote Originally Posted by Hoffmann View Post
    Be patient. Akhnaten is scheduled to be staged by the Met next season (2018-19) using the LA Opera's production with Anthony Roth Costanza. I've read interviews with Costanza, who discusses his experience with the Brazilian wax he undergoes for his full nude entrance. It's right around the corner!

    The production is killer and Roth is terrific!
    Great! I look forward to it!
    As you probably know, I've interviewed Anthony as well. Met his parents, who actually are both professors of Psychology in the same university where I teach. Anthony was born 13 miles from where I live.
    "J'ai dit qu'il ne suffisait pas d'entendre la musique, mais qu'il fallait encore la voir" (Stravinsky)

  24. Likes Amfortas, Hoffmann liked this post

Similar Threads

  1. Akhnaten at the LA Opera, Los Angeles, CA
    By Hoffmann in forum Opera House & Theater Performance Reviews
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: November 20th, 2016, 05:54 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


free html visitor counters
hit counter




Official Media Partners of Opera Carolina

Opera Lively is the Official Media Partner of Opera Carolina

Official Media Partners of NC Opera

Opera Lively is the Official Media Partner of North Carolina Opera

Official Media Partners of Greensboro Opera

Opera Lively is the Official Media Partner of Greensboro Opera

Official Media Partners of The A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute and Piedmont Opera

Opera Lively is the Official Media Partner of The A.J. Fletcher Opera Institute
of the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and Piedmont Opera

Official Media Partners of Asheville Lyric Opera

Opera Lively is the Official Media Partner of Asheville Lyric Opera

Official Media Partners of UNC Opera

Opera Lively is the Official Media Partner of UNC Opera
Dept. of Music, UNC-Chapel Hill College of Arts and Sciences

www.operalively.com

VISIT WWW.OPERALIVELY.COM FOR ALL YOUR OPERA NEEDS