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American Opera Classics - Taylor: Peter Ibbetson / Schwarz, Griffey, Flanigan, et al

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> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II Scene 3: You are Peter Ibbetson (Mary, Peter)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II Scene 3: My God…Mimsey! (Peter, Mary)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 1: I wish he would come (Mrs Glyn, Mrs Deane, Peter, Servant)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 1: Comme un chien dans un jeu de quille (Colonel Ibbetson, Peter, Mrs Glyn, Mrs Deane)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 2: Is it time? (Peter, Chaplain)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 2: Is the Chaplain there? (Mrs Deane, Peter, the Prison Governor, Chaplain)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 3: En revenant d'Auvergne (Chorus of the Dream, Peter)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 3: She does not hear! (Peter, Mary)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 4, Epilogue: How is he tonight? (Mrs Deane, Turnkey, Peter)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act III Scene 4, Epilogue: Beloved… Mimsey! Mimsey! (Mary, Peter, Chorus of the Dream)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II Scene 2: Dors, mignonne, c'est l'heure qui sonne (Voice of Mme Seraskier, Mary, Peter)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II Scene 2: Give me your hands (Mary, Peter)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II Scene 2: Comme un chien dans un jeu de quille (Captain Ibbetson, Mme Pasquier, Peter)
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II: Orchestral Interlude - The Storm
> Peter Ibbetson, Op. 20 - Act II Scene 3: Par ici, Madame la Duchesse (Achille, Mary, Victorine)

Album Summary

>Taylor, Joseph Deems : Peter Ibbetson, opera, Op. 20
Performers Conductor Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

From its triumphant, star-studded premiere in 1931 until 1985, 'Peter Ibbetson' was the most-performed American opera at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. The story (based on the novel by George Du Maurier) of two star-crossed lovers who secretly escape to a mystical "dream world" was immensely popular in the 1930s, and was the subject of several Hollywood films. Composer Deems Taylor - known to millions as the host of the original Disney 'Fantasia' movie - was at that time a leading voice in American music. His lush, romantic / impressionist music and masterful dramatic timing make 'Peter Ibbetson' a most rewarding listening experience, and a "must" for all opera fans. Rediscover an American classic with this world-premiere recording featuring some of today's leading opera stars.


A Major 20th Century American Opera-The Gap Finally Filled
A MAJOR 20th CENTURY AMERICAN OPERA THE GAP FINALLY FILLED Review by Jerry Fink Deems Taylor was a major American music critic and composer best remembered for two operas, The Kings Henchman and Peter Ibbetson ; and, his live appearance in the Disney feature film Fantasia . Peter Ibbetson has been considered one of the signature operas of the American traditionalist school of the 1920s and 30s. The work was commissioned by Gatti-Casazza for the Metropolitan Opera and premiered February 1931. It was a box-office success and ran between 1931 and 1936 giving the Met a needed financial shot in the arm in the bowels of the Depression. The plot of the opera was taken from George Du Mauriers novel of the same name. The timeline of the story is roughly a thirty year period between 1855 and 1887. The action takes place in both England and France with most of the French scenes sung in French and the English scenes sung in English. Peter and Mary are the adult counterparts of two children ( Gogo and Mimsey ) who grew up as children in France as very good and trusted friends . As the plot continues, their adult relationship with each other becomes more defined and, of course, more complicated. Since Mary is married, Peter will not be able to fulfill his desire for a complete relationship with the woman he loves. His relationship with his Uncle has been and continues to be unbearable. When Peter finds out that his Uncle has told others that he is really Peters father, Peters anger culminates in killing his Uncle. Peter ends up in prison, with his death sentence commuted to life in prison. Peters only solace in life is reflected in two large dream scenes (one each in acts two and three). His love for Mary can only be totally fulfilled when he dreams true. Thirty years pass. Peter is informed by his old and dear friend Mrs. Deane that Mary has passed away. As Peter lies dying, Mary appears as a spirit beckoning Peter to come with her. He dies and the opera ends with a chorus greeting a new and more beautiful day. The sound of Taylors music is quite beautiful throughout. The orchestra is the main protagonist and plays continuously. The vocal writing is mainly declamatory with a few important arias and ensembles sprinkled appropriately throughout the work. Wagner, Massenet, Debussy, R. Strauss, Delius, and even Henry Hadley can be heard here, but in the end this is the work of an American independent musical voice. To me, the best music is found in the two dream sequences. The singers are all up to the task and I couldnt hear any glaring mistakes throughout the performance(s) of April 29th and May 1st, 1999. Anthony Dean Griffey as Peter and Lori Summers as Mrs. Deane stand out for me as giving the best performances. Gerard Schwarz obviously loves this music and prepared these performances extremely well. His knowledge of the musical idiom is flawless and the orchestra and chorus are superb. The sound is excellent for a live pick up and audience noise is minimal. The liner notes and synopsis are splendidly written by James Pegolotti. The artist bios are comprehensive. The complete libretto is available from the Naxos website with the French translations in red.
Submitted on 09/14/09 by ProfessorJF 
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Works Details

>Taylor, Joseph Deems : Peter Ibbetson, opera, Op. 20
  • Performers: Terri Richtor (Soprano); Emily Lunde (Mezzo Soprano); Gene Buchholz; John Obourn; Paul Gudas (Tenor); Anthony Griffey (Tenor); Lori Summers; Barry Johnson (Violin); Richard Zeller (Baritone); Eric Stark; Charles Austin (Bass); Lauren Flanigan (Soprano); Carolyn Gronlund (Mezzo Soprano)
  • Conductor: Gerard Schwarz
  • Ensemble: Seattle Symphony Chorus
  • Notes: S. Mark Taper Foundation Auditorium, Benaroya Hall, Seattle (04/29/1999/05/01/1999)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 29 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Opera/Operetta
  • Studio/Live: Live