Opera Lafayette Ryan Brown, artistic director and conductor
Washington, D.C.-based Opera Lafayette makes its Kennedy Center debut with the modern American premiere of Pierre Alexandre Monsigny's Le Déserteur(1769), a brilliant 18th century opéra-comique that helped set in motion the Romantic movement in Europe and America.
In this forerunner of the "rescue" opera, the resourceful heroine Louise wins a pardon from the king for her fiancé Alexis, who is accused of desertion from the army after he was tricked into believing that she had married another. Lilting melodies sung in French and English dialogue advance the story, as Louise extricates her beloved from prison and a death sentence. Le Déserteur owes its extensive performance history in both Europe and North America to its graceful sentiment, romantic parody, intellectual radicalism, and powerful humanitarian ideas.
This concert performance features baritone William Sharp and soprano Dominique Labelle, with artistic director Ryan Brown conducting the 31-piece period instrument Opera Lafayette Orchestra. The renowned New York Baroque Dance Company artistic director and choreographer Catherine Turocy directs the opera ensemble and actor John Lescault.
Performed in French and English. Timing: 2 hours, 20 minutes, including one intermission.
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