MASSENET AND FEMMES FATALES
GEORGE COLERICK investigates
By the turn of the twentieth century, the achievements of Jules Massenet (1842-1912) included an exceptional sensibility in female characterisation through a sequence of operas, and musically his reputation in France could not have been higher. He was susceptible to imitation, his melodic influence becoming apparent in the popular French music idiom. Yet in Britain his name was scarcely heard except among connoisseurs, later in the first half of the twentieth century, partly because performed opera was scarcely available outside London and very restricted within. Later, his works would be much revived but not before a soprano, Stella J Wright, was organising the Massenet Society with great élan from Kensington, and whose faith in that composer's genius was fully justified...
Copyright © 27 January 2015 George Colerick,