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IMPULSE AND SPACE

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RICHARD HICKOX talks to BILL NEWMAN
at the 2001 Spoleto Festival

 

Richard Hickox in rehearsal at Spoleto 2001. Photo: Bill Newman

'I knew Menotti's music before I met him. At the age of 82 he became Intendant of Rome Opera, and he realized that he didn't know many of the current operatic singers and conductors, so he asked his friends who he might consider.

'Jean-Yves Thibaudet mentioned my name and I was summoned to meet him at the Connaught Hotel in London. During the discussion, it was decided that I should do Dvorák's Rusalka. Then I came to the Festival here; first of all I became principal Guest Conductor, then Music Director. In that first year I did two operas -- Janácek's Cunning Little Vixen, and The Consul. That was my introduction to Maestro's music.

'The Consul is his most dramatic opera. The most richly scored and lyrical is The Saint of Bleecker Street.

During my conversation with Gian Carlo Menotti in 2000, he stated his special fondness for Maria Golovin. 'Yes, and he also likes The Last Savage. I haven't heard every note of every opera as yet, but I promised him that I will try and record most of his music for Chandos. We have already made four recordings. This could be a ten year project. The company approves and the next to be recorded is Amahl and the Night Visitors.

Menotti: Apocalisse CD cover. (c) 2001 Chandos Records Ltd

Richard Hickox's newest release includes Apocalisse, Fantasia for Cello and Orchestra with Raphael Wallfisch, and the Suite from Sebastian. The synthesis of the body of Jewish and Christian settings on the subject of the apocalypse in the Relevations of St John comes through very strongly from the opening bars. 'That is because the Spoleto Orchestra, who wouldn't exist at all except for Menotti, love the man and his music. They put their all into it during performance. They're fantastic, world class, aren't they?!'

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Copyright © 10 January 2002 Bill Newman, Edgware, Middlesex, UK

 

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BILL NEWMAN VISITS THE SPOLETO FESTIVAL

THE SPOLETO FESTIVAL WEBSITE

THE CHANDOS RECORDS WEBSITE

 

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