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Pietro Mascagni - Iris (1962/2002)

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Pietro Mascagni - Iris (1962/2002)

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Disc 1
1 	Act 1. Introduktion	11:15 		
2 	Act 1. Ho fatto un triste sogno pauroso	05:12 	
3 	Act 1. È lei! è lei!	01:53 	
4 	Act 1. Voglio posure ove à più caldo il sole!	01:30 
5 	Act 1. Al rio! al rio! È il plenilunio! Al rio!	04:12 
6 	Act 1. I pure stille, gaie scintilla, Scende la vita!	04:10 
7 	Act 1. Giù per la via ne viene un gaio suono	01:26 	
8 	Act 1. Io son Danjuro il padre dei Fantocci	02:04 	
9 	Act 1. Misera! Ognor qui sola!	04:30 	 	
10 	Act 1. Ah! la istoria pietosa!	01:14 	
11 	Act 1. Apri la tua finestra	02:44 	
12 	Act 1. É questa poesia gran ciurmatrice	02:29 	
13 	Act 1. Danze per la morte di Dhia: La Bellezza, la Morte, il Vampiro	03:49 	
14 	Act 1. Grazie, Mousmé! A rivederci! Musica!	00:23 	
15 	Act 1. Questo dramma è menzogna... tutto, tutto	08:05 	
16 	Act 2. La che ci fate ancora mascherate?	10:05 

Disc 2 
1 	Act 2. Ognora sogni, sogni e sogni	07:47 	
2 	Act 2. Io pingo... pingo, ma il mio pennilo invano stendo, intengo!	04:20 	
3 	Act 2. A un cenno mio manda le vesti e i doni	07:39 
4 	Act 2. Un di (ero piccina) al tempio vidi un bonzo	04:26 
5 	Act 2. Son le folle dei bonzi spavaldi e I	04:47 
6 	Act 2. Voglio il giardino mio!		02:13 	
7 	Act 2. Colle piccine, gran maestra natural	03:03 	
8 	Act 2. Annota! La gente dotta e ghiotta	03:15 	
9 	Act 2. Oh, maraviglia dei maraviglia!	07:09 	
10 	Act 3. Ad ora bruna e tarda	12:40 	
11 	Act 3. Perché?... Perché?	00:51 	
12 	Act 3. Ognun per suo cammino	01:22 	
13 	Act 3. Rubai, fui bastonato	01:16 	
14 	Act 3. Ahimè! Chi allumerà	01:16 	
15 	Act 3. Ancora! Il triste sogno pauroso!	10:21 	

Iris - Magda Olivero  (Soprano)
Osaka - Luigi Ottolini  (Tenor)
Kyoto - Renato Capecchi  (Baritone)
II Cieco - Plinio Clabassi  (Bass)
Dhia - Jennie Veeninga
Un Merciaivolo - Fred Bongers
Un Cenciaivlo - Fred Bongers

Omroep Orchestra,  Omroep Chorus
Conductor - Fulvio Vernizzi 

 

This is the opera in which Mascagni tried desperately to do everything in an attempt to prove that he wasn’t a no-talent one-hit wonder living off the royalties from The Little One-Act Opera That Could: a crypt-like opening prelude contrasted with a massively explosive choral hymn (I will say more about that soon!), a Japanese girl (daughter of a blind old man) who is kidnapped by a psychotic admirer and forced into a brothel only for her to throw herself into a sewer (you heard that right), followed by a whole-tone prelude for the third act and a repeat of the massively explosive choral hymn from the beginning as she dies in the sewer. So, what could possibly go wrong? Well, if you ever wondered what the D.W. Griffith 1919 film Broken Blossoms starring Lillian Gish would look like set in Japan and involving a sewer shaft, this is essentially it except that the plot is meant to be more symbolistic than realistic. Actually this opera was successful, for a while, and is now considered to be among the top three Mascagni operas. It is not so infrequently compared to Madama Butterfly although to be honest the music sounds closer to Turandot if comparisons to a Puccini opera are to be made. Perhaps the connection to Butterfly in ones mind is because of the shared Japanese setting.

SETTING: Japan, 19th century. This has got to be one of the most depressingly sad plots in all opera: Iris (soprano), a young and innocent girl who loves nature (particularly the sun), is kidnapped during a puppet show by a rogue admirer named Osaka (tenor) and Kyoto (baritone) the keeper of a Geisha house at Yoshiwara (which are misidentified in the opera, and most of western culture, as being brothels which they are NOT!). Kyoto leaves money and a note for her blind old father (bass) cruelly implying that she has deserted him to become a prostitute. At the geisha house Osaka fails to seduce the innocent Iris and abandons her. Kyoto decides to try to market her but her father shows up and rebukes her, throwing mud at her. She then rushes back into the house and throws herself down a shaft into the sewer below where she dies the next morning. ---philsoperaworld.music.blog

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