A history of opera in performance: Verdi’s Macbeth at Glyndebourne, 1938 to 2007
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This dissertation is a history of Glyndebourne Festival Opera’s productions of Verdi’s Macbeth. The first three chapters document each of the three productions, which are directed by Carl Ebert (1938), Franco Enriquez (1964), and Richard Jones (2007). The final chapter is an analysis – focusing on the score’s staging potential – of the opera itself. The analysis is used to draw together and clarify the various staging interpretations discussed in the previous three chapters. The Glyndebourne Archives form the main source for the first two chapters, and my observation of rehearsals and performances informs the third. Historical context is particularly important in the first chapter, while dramaturgical analysis comes to the fore in the second and third. In all cases, the individual production as art work is the main subject of my research. The interaction of music and stage is of particular importance. The methodological challenges presented by exploring something as ephemeral as live performance are discussed in the introduction, and kept in mind throughout. This dissertation is the first major study of Glyndebourne Festival Opera’s creative work. As such, it takes a first step towards the scholarly investigation of the history of opera production in Britain.
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