exactly 400 years ago ….

It was in Mantua Italy, in the accademia degl’Invaghiti where the first performance of L’ Orfeo by Claudio Monteverdi was given. And tonight, exactly 400 years later, we went to the concertgebouw here in Bruges to hear that Opera performed by Concerto Italiano conducted by Rinaldo Alessandrini and ad the following singers: Furio Zanasi, Anna Simboli, Sara Mingardo, Sergio Foresti, Monica Piccinini, Antonio Abete, Luca Dordolo, Raffaele Giordani, Gianluca Ferrarini and Marco Scavazza. Opera would not be opera without Monteverdi and after hearing and seeing L’Incoronazione di Poppea a couple of years ago, we got tickets for good seats and we certainly do not regret it. What a tragic story and how vicious those gods…. I will certainly remember Furio Zanasi as Orfeo. The emotional impact of the intervention by Sara Mingardo where in Act 2 she informs Orfeo of the death of Euridice was overwhelming (and that is an understatement!) You can read about Orfeo’s tragic story here and for the real musicians take a peak at the score here

Rosas / Ictus / Steve Reich Evening

Yesterday we went to the concertgebouw in Brugge to see Rosas the dance company founded by Ann Marie de Keersmaecker and hear Ictus play Steve Reich. I have always liked the minimalistic music of Steve Reich, and Philip Glass and Terry Riley…. to the sometimes considerable irritation of the other members of my family. On the other hand the name Rosas and De Keersmaecker were familiar to me but i had never seen them or really had an opinion about them, i knew they were very well know in Belgium, but so what….. It did not take long to for me to make up my mind, it was a fabulous evening and the biggest regret was we did not bring our daughter along to be inspired (but well buy a dvd…). Although i do not know too much about dancing the performance was very impressive. And it was as if the music was written after the choreography was made. The use of lights on the scene by Remon Fromont was appropriately minimalistic but all the more effective, o boy… if i could ever get an opportunity to photograph all this. And why not list the name of the dancers: Anne-Lin Akselsen, BoÅ¡tjan Antonci, Tale Dolven, Kosi Hidama, Kaya Kolodziejczyk, Cynthia Loemij, Mark Lorimer, Moya Michael, Elizaveta Penkóva, Zsuzsa Rozsavölgyi, Anani Dodji Sanouvi, Igor Shyshko, Clinton Stringer, Sue-Yeon Youn.