It is a non-subscription production
of a very successfulGerman staging that has been touring the last fifteen years.
Sasha Waltz is the directorand choreographer, with Tanzcompagnie Sasha Waltz and Guests as the
main element of the performance. Christopher Moulds conducts the Akademie für Alte Musik and the
Vocalconsort, both from Berlin. The stage sets are by Thomas Schenk and Sasha Waltz, the costumes by Christine Birkle, the lighting by Thilo Reuther. The production was premiered at the
Staatsoper unter den Linden.
The opera is performed in the 'musical reconstruction' by Atilio
Cremonesi, who interpolates the originalscore with other music byPurcell. The performance is about two hours without intermission, as
compared with seventy minutes for eg Rene Jacobs' recording. Theorchestra, singers (Aurore Ugolin, Reuben Willcox, Deborah York, Céline Ricci,
Fabrice Mantegna, Sebastian Lipp and Michael Bennett) andchorus were excellent in the huge 2,000 seat Teatro dell'Opera,
resounding to the baroquesonorities of a score that, according to music historians, had only
two performances in rather small spaces: a hall inKing Charles II's Royal Palace and at a boarding school for girls. For these reasons, they deserve to be
Nonetheless, the performance is
enthralling, and this is the reason for its fifteen years of successes
around the globe. The Rome audience was simply enthusiastic, even though they saw something quite different from what Purcell intended.