At The Opera, Humperdink: Hansel and Gretel, March 17, 2018
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Hansel and Gretel is an opera by nineteenth-century composer Engelbert Humperdinck, who described it as a Märchenoper (fairy-tale opera). The libretto was written by Humperdinck's sister, Adelheid Wette, based on the Grimm brothers' fairy tale "Hansel and Gretel". It is much admired for its folk music-inspired themes, one of the most famous being the "Abendsegen" ("Evening Benediction") from act 2.
The idea for the opera was proposed to Humperdinck by his sister, who approached him about writing music for songs that she had written for her children for Christmas based on "Hansel and Gretel". After several revisions, the musical sketches and the songs were turned into a full-scale opera.
Humperdinck composed Hansel and Gretel in Frankfurt in 1891 and 1892. The opera was first performed in Hoftheater in Weimar on December 23, 1893, conducted by Richard Strauss. It has been associated with Christmas since its earliest performances and today it is still most often performed at Christmas time.
Cavalleria rusticana, opera Intemezzo
Czecho-Slovak Radio Symphony; Ondrej Lenard, conductor
Anne Sofie von Otter and Barbara Bonney
Hansel and Gretel
; Jeffrey Tate, conductor Anne Sofie von Otter and Barbara Bonney
Hansel and Gretel in English Act 3
I Hear You Calling Me and other Irsh ballads
Martha - The Last Rose of Summer
n/a; n/a, conductor Deanna Durbin
Act 2. Letzte Rose, Wie Magst Du So Einsam