In the framework of the French Spring, the National Theater of Opera, Ballet and Folk Ensemble presents “The Grand French Opera”, featuring works by Berlioz, Massenet, Saint Saëns, performed by the NTOB Orchestra, with the participation of conductor Jacopo Sipari and soloist Vikena Kamenica. This premiere program will be presented to the public on the evening of March 4, at 7 p.m., at the “Toni Harapi” Hall of the “Jordan Misja” Artistic Lyceum.

 

With the participation of:

Conductor: Jacopo Sipari

Soloist: Vikena Kamenica

NTOB Orchestra

 

Program:

Hector Berlioz – Carnival Overture, Op.9

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

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Massenet – “Werther! Qui m’aurait dit… Ces lettres!” (Letter Scene) – Charlotte’s Aria

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

Soloist: Vikena Kamenica

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Hector  Berlioz – Roméo et Juliette, Op. 17: Part II – Love Scene

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

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Hector  Berlioz – Roméo et Juliette, Op. 17: Scherzo de la reine Mab

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

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Donizetti – Aria Leonor: O mon Fernand – La Favorite

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

Soloist: Vikena Kamenica

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Camille Saint-Saëns – Symphonic Poem “Phaéton”, Op. 35

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

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Camille Saint-Saëns – Bacchanale from Samson and Delilah

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

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Camille Saint-Saëns – “Mon coeur s’ouvre ta voix”

Performs: NTOB Orchestra

Soloist: Vikena Kamenica

 

What unites the composers of this concert is the period of romanticism in music. Romantic composers were known for creating unique and original musical pieces from scratch as they did rely on previous compositions. A feature that distinguishes romantic music from other forms of music is the ability to evoke powerful emotions. Because of this, this period created a new audience fond of sweet tunes and soothing harmonies. Composers of this era have been admired as geniuses in the music world for their high degree of accuracy in execution as well as for their talent.

 

Hector Berlioz, lived and worked in the 19th century and is considered one of the most romantic composers who dropped his medical studies to pursue the passion that tied him since childhood, music. In 1838, he finished composing “Romeo and Juliet”, but this piece was first performed on November 24, 1839 in Bastille Square. After many concerts, Berlioz decided to make a long trip around Europe so that his music would come out of the tight circle of close friends and common admirers and, if not, gain some popularity outside his own country. Some of the stages of his travels around Europe were: Brussels, Berlin, Hamburg, Leipzig, Weimar and Stuttgart. In 1845, he visited Vienna, Hungary, and Prague. In 1847 his concerts continued in Russia with weekly stays in Riga, St. Petersburg and Moscow.

Jules Massenet was the youngest son of a merchant who joined music thanks to his mother, a talented amateur pianist. Jules received his first piano lesson at the age of six. The first major opera by Massenet – Don Cesar de Bazan was staged in 1872. It failed, but the oratorio “Mary Magdalene,” performed the following year, was a success. A real triumph was the production of the “King of Lahore” opera in 1877. After the French premiere, it was staged in Dresden, London, Madrid, and also in eight Italian theaters. A year later, the composer became a professor at the Paris Conservatory. At the beginning of the 20th century, Massenet became famous worldwide – his operas were staged in various countries. But he was far from enjoying the glory, preferring the privacy of his home to social events (the composer called himself “a man from the fireplace”) – he wouldn’t always attend the premieres of his works. In addition to 34 operas, Massenet wrote a piano concert, a series of concert suites, ballet music, oratorios, and cantatas, as well as more than 200 songs and romances.

 

Camille Saint Saëns, at the age of two, proved to possess harmonious hand movements on the piano as well as perfect aural skills. His first composition dates back to March 22, 1839, a small piece for the piano when he was only five years old. In 1840, when he was 13 years old, he began studying at the Paris Conservatory for organ and composition. At the age of sixteen, Saint Saëns wrote his first symphony. During his lifetime, Saint-Saëns was quite the productive; after writing his first symphony, he continued with 4 piano concerts, three violin concerts, two cello concerts, and 20 solo and orchestra concerts. Saint-Saëns stood out from all the other composers of that time as the composer of a musical track for a moving film: The Assassination of the Duke of Guise.

Saint-Saëns is known for his sweet melodies and stunning articulation of hand movements and his use of musical colors and expressiveness is also distinguished in his compositions, generating enthusiasm in listeners. He was a progressive influence on subsequent composers such as Debussy.

 

Jacopo Sipari – Conductor

35 year old conductor Jacopo Sipari was born in L’Aquila, where he studied piano, composition and singing and graduated at “A. Casella” Conservatory of L’Aquila, and then he continued his studies in the most important national and international schools and academies under the authoritative guidance of artists such as Alberto Veronesi, President of Puccini Foundation and Jan Latham Koenig, music director of Novaya Opera of Moscow.

He has been the guest conductor of numerous Italian orchestras such as ORT – Tuscany Regional Symphony Orchestra, “Abruzzo” Symphony Orchestra (ISA), Symphony Orchestra of Lecce and Salento (OLES), Puccini Philharmonic Orchestra, Bari Symphony Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra of Salerno “Claudio Abbado”, “Teatro Cilea” of Reggio Calabria Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonic Orchestra of Benevento (OFB); and international ones such as Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra (QPO), Istanbul National Symphony Orchestra, National Theatre Orchestra of Serbia, Georgia National Opera House Symphony Orchestra, National Theatre Orchestra of Cluj – Napoca, Puccini Philharmonic Orchestra, Bari Symphony Orchestra, National Radio and Tv Symphony Orchestra of Serbia (RTS), Symphony Orchestra of Zapopan (Mexico), National Symphony Orchestra of Radio and Television of Ukraine, National Symphony Orchestra of Thessalonika – Greece, National Philharmonic Orchestra of Brasov – Romania, National Opera House Orchestra of Azerbaijan, National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, National State Orchestra of Plovdiv Opera House – Bulgaria, Philharmonic Orchestra of Benevento, National Philharmonic Orchestra of Mongolian State, Sri Lanka National State Symphony Orchestra, “Marco dall’Aquila” Symphony Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra of Salerno “Claudio Abbado”, “Pompei Opera Festival” Symphony Orchestra, “Bellini Opera Festival” Symphony Orchestra.