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Opera Explained: BIZET - Carmen (Smillie)

    
      

 

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Opera Explained: BIZET - Carmen (Smillie)

Opera Explained
An Introduction to... BIZET: Carmen

Author: Thomson Smillie
Narrator: David Timson
1 CD
8-page booklet
Naxos 8.558010
ISBN: 1-84379-036-X

Carmen is among the most popular operas for all the obvious reasons: great characters, a gripping story and fabulous music. But what sets it on a pinnacle is an amazing combination of three factors: a sizzling gipsy heroine (one of the most psychologically complex and compelling characters in all theatre), great atmosphere (Spain, hot sun, the bull-ring) and the prodigality of melodic invention - one great tune after another, at least a dozen of which are the staples of Madison Avenue and the animated cartoon.

Like a surprising number of opera-house staples, Carmen was not a success at its first performance. In fact, it is likely that its failure contributed to the early death of the composer. But as Thomson Smillie shows in his accessible introduction, the emotionally driven nature of its heroine and her admirers, Don José and Escamillo, makes Carmen unforgettable. As always in the Opera Explained series, the music itself plays an integral role.

Bizet, Georges

  An Introduction to... BIZET Carmen
1.   Play with flash player Carmen - the master work 00:02:26
2.   Play with flash player The duet from The Pearl Fishers 00:01:59
3.   Play with flash player Bizet's career showed early promise 00:02:28
4.   Play with flash player The Prelude to Carmen 00:01:24
5.   Play with flash player The 'fate' or 'destiny' theme 00:03:26
6.   Play with flash player The voices of the four main protagonists - Micaëla 00:00:17
7.   Play with flash player Carmen 00:00:18
8.   Play with flash player Don José 00:00:19
9.   Play with flash player Escamillo 00:00:52
10.   Play with flash player The sun - baked square in Seville 00:04:02
11.   Play with flash player Carmen: L'amour est un oiseau rebelle - the Habanera 00:03:25
12.   Play with flash player Duet - Micaëla and Carmen 00:05:42
13.   Play with flash player Près des ramparts de Seville 00:02:44
14.   Play with flash player Act II Lillas Pastia's tavern 00:04:40
15.   Play with flash player Escamillo: Votre toast 00:01:09
16.   Play with flash player Escamillo: Toreador's Song 00:02:18
17.   Play with flash player The smugglers' quintet 00:02:50
18.   Play with flash player Carmen sings for Don José 00:03:05
19.   Play with flash player Don José: La fleur que tu m'avais jetée 00:02:07
20.   Play with flash player Act III 00:03:27
21.   Play with flash player Mercédès and Frasquita play cards 00:03:00
22.   Play with flash player Micaëla: Ja dis que rien ne m'épouvante 00:02:36
23.   Play with flash player Act IV 00:01:44
24.   Play with flash player March of the Toreadors 00:01:18
25.   Play with flash player Escamillo: Si tu m'aimes, Carmen 00:02:27
26.   Play with flash player The fate motif 00:05:36

Total Playing Time: 01:05:39






Author(s):
Smillie, Thomson

Composer(s):
Bizet, Georges

Reader(s):
Timson, David

Label: Naxos Educational

Series: Opera Explained

Genre: Music Education

Period: Romantic

Catalogue No: 8.558010

Barcode: 0636943801024

Release Date: 03/2002

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