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Création : Royal Opera House de Covent Garden, Londres, le 15 janvier 2000

Opéra de Iannis Xenakis sur des textes d’Eschyle, présenté pour la première fois en Angleterre, en coproduction avec l’English Bach Festival, pour l’inauguration de la nouvelle salle du Royal Opera House de Covent Garden à Londres



Mise en scène et scénographie : Alain Germain

Décors : Terence Emerey

Lumières : Hartley T.A.Kemp

Distribution : Diane Atherton, Kevin Beckett, Marianne Borgo, Keith Brazil, Jean Carter, Guy Harbottle, Olivia Maffett, Ann Manly, Gérard O’Beirne, Anthony Scales, Tim Sutton, Leandros Taliotis, Rachel Weston, Mary Wiegold, New London Children’s Choir et Ensemble Spectrum sous la direction de Guy Protheroe


« The Iannis Xenakis’s Oresteia is a first-ever British staging. Xenakis’s choice of instruments is for bass woodwinds, brass and a barrage of exotic percussion.

Oresteia is much more of a succes in Alan Germain’s far more animated approach to Xenakis’s almost unclassifiable opera-cum-theatre version of The Oresteia. Xenakis himself points to the ancient Greek theatre as a synthesis of all the major arts, and seeks to replicate that notion of Gesamtkunstwerk with is own contemporary and highly ritualised form of entertainment.  Using a range of both actors and singers, Xenakis shreds Aeschylus’s tragedy to its bare bones in his attemp to go for drama and spectacle in equal mesure.

And that visceral power and pulse is there too in Germain’s fast-moving and very theatrical production. Add some brilliant and highly energised playing from the ensemble Spectrum in the pit, tautly conducted by Guy Protheroe, a specialist (and it shows) in Xenakis’s complex and stochastic music and this Oresteia amounts to a genuine spectacle, brutal in force and sonority bust almost « pysically » invigorating from start to finish.

So go for Xenakis – with his Oresteia, the splendid Linbury Studio Theatre really gets its baptism of fire. »

Duncan Hadfield . What’s On

Paris, 2000
Iannis Xenakis et Alain Germain, lors d’une séance de travail chez le compositeur à Paris, 2000

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