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Sep. 08 2012

09/15/12 – Faust – 1:00pm

By WBJC Programming | Posted in Operafest | Comments Off on 09/15/12 – Faust – 1:00pm

San Francisco Opera

Faust by Charles François Gounod
Libretto by Jules  Barbier and Michel Carré

Approximate Running Time: 3 hour, 30 minutes with 2 intermissions
In French

Gounod’s Faust remains the most famous operatic treatment of Goethe’s play. Orchestral excerpts from the work include the ballet scene from the fifth act, the Nubian dances, Cleopatra variations, Trojans’ dance, Mirror variations and dance of Phryne. The second act includes Valentine’s O sainte médaille (O holy medal), as he looks at the holy medal Marguerite has given him as protection in battle. The same scene brings Le veaux d’or (The golden calf) of Mephistopheles, in praise of worldly things and ends with the Faust waltzAinsi que la brise légère (As the gentle breeze). In the next act, after Siebel’s Faites-lui mes aveux (Take to her my vows), comes Faust’s ecstatic song to the house of his beloved Marguerite, Salut! demeure chaste et pur (Hail! Dwelling chaste and pure) and Marguerite’s innocent ballad Il était un roi de Thulé (There was a King of Thule). This is in marked contrast to her delighted Jewel Song, Ah! je ris de me voir si belle (Ah! I laugh to see myself so fair). In her garden she plucks the petals of a flower to see if Faust loves her, and later, in a night of love, admits Il m’aime (He loves me). The desolate and ominous opening of the fourth act is followed by the sound of returning soldiers and the well known Soldiers’ Chorus Gloire immortelle (Immortal glory), leading to the duel scene and the death of Valentine.  (excerpted from Naxos)


Faust  – Stefano Secco
Méphistophélès  – John Relyea
Marguerite  – Patricia Racette
Wagner  – Austin Kness
Siebel  – Daniela Mack
Valentin  – Brian Mulligan
Marthe  – Catherine Cook

Conductor Maurizio Benini
Director Jose Maria Condemi

Production designer Robert Perdziola
Lighting Designer Duane Schuler
Chorus Director Ian Robertson
Choreographer Lawrence Pech
Fight Choreographer Jonathan Rider
Musical Preparation Bryndon Hassman, Allen Perriello, John Parr, Ernest Fredric Knell
Assistant conductor Dennis Doubin
Supertitles Philip Kuttner
Assistant Stage Director Elkhanah Pulitzer
Stage Manager Jennifer Good
Costume supervisor Kristi Johnson
Wig and Makeup Designer Gerd Mairandres
Production Super Captain Susan Anderson-Norby

Recorded Summer 2010, War Memorial Opera House.


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