The Kennedy Center

Opera Lafayette: <i>Armide</i>

Opera Lafayette: Armide

Monday, February 1, 2010 7:00 PM

Opera Lafayette celebrates its 15th anniversary with a concert production of Gluck's Armide, a touchstone of French baroque opera. 

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Ryan Brown, conductor and artistic director

Gluck's Armide is one of the masterpieces of the 18th century, intense and psychologically complex, yet grand in its proportions.  With this opera, Gluck both looks back to the tradition of lyric tragedy established by Lully and anticipates the romanticism of Berlioz and Wagner.  The story unfolds as a beautiful Muslim sorceress, Armide, is ready to kill her mortal enemy Renaud, a Christian knight, only to find herself falling hopelessly in love with him.  She spirits him away to her pleasure garden, but Renaud's comrades soon find him and convince him to follow his duty and return to battle.  As Renaud leaves, Armide, in despair, turns her enchanted palace into a barren desert.  A truly extraordinary cast brings Gluck's ravishing music to life and the New York Baroque Dance Company creates the visual spectacle in this concert production with dance, chorus, and orchestra.
Performed in French with English surtitles.  Timing: 3 hours, 15 min., with one intermission

  Armide - Dominique Labelle
  Renaud - William Burden (Washington debut)
  La Haine - Stephanie Houtzeel
  Sidonie, Lucinde - Judith van Wanroij (Washington debut)
  Phénice, Mélisse - Nathalie Paulin
  Artémidore, Le Chevalier Danois - Robert Getchell
  Hidraot - William Sharp
  Aronte, Ubalde - Darren Perry
With:  New York Baroque Dance Company, artistic director and choreographer
           Members of the Opera Lafayette Young Artists Program, Chorus, and Orchestra