Thursday, December 7, 2017

Malte Roesner co-creates and performs in sold out Opera Parallèle concert

Malte Roesner from the 2018 Barihunk Photo Book
Malte Roesner, who earlier this year made his U.S. stage debut with West Edge Opera in Vicente Martín y Soler's The Chastity Tree (see our post), as well as his U.S. concert debut, is returning on December 10th for a recital at San Francisco's historic Palace of the Legion of Honor. The concert is a collaboration with Opera Parallèle and the museum. 

A musicologist, as well as a singer, Roesner helped put together the program, which centers around composers who had some connection to the painters Gustav Klimt and Auguste Rodin. The two artists are being featured at an exhibit at the Legion of Honor. The program also features the rising young star, lyric soprano Amina Edris, as well as accompanist Keisuke Nakagoshi. The innovative show quickly sold out and resulted in online bartering for tickets and a demand for a second concert! (None has been announced). 

Roesner will be performing Hugo Wolf's Michelangelo Songs, as well as pieces by Alexander von Zemlinsky and Hans Pfitzner. Amina Edris will be performing works by Reynaldo Hahn, Alma Mahler, Claude Debussy and Henri Duparc.

According to Roesner the paths of Klimt and Rodin intersected in the 1898 Secession in Vienna and both of their most famous pieces are titled "The Kiss." 

According to his program notes, other connections include:   
  • Michelangelo Buonarroti was one of Rodin's main role models. He traveled to Rome to study him. Rodin said, "It is Michelangelo who has freed me from academic sculpture." 
  • Alma Mahler was a close friend of Gustav Klimt and the 5 Lieder contain one song with lyrics by Rainer Maria Rilke, who was Rodin's private secretary.      
  • Alexander von Zemlinsky was a Viennese contemporary of Klimt's and together with Gustav Mahler a competitor for Alma Schindler's (later Mahler-werfel) affection. According to her diary and her autobiography Klimt was her first kiss and Zemlinsky both her composition teacher and the man she experienced her sexual awakening with, but ultimately she decided to marry Mahler, who was 20 years her senior.       
  • In a scandal over an artistic dispute, Debussy came out publicly as a supporter of Rodin. Debussy and Klimt were both born and died the same year.   
If you're missing this concert, you may have a chance to see Roesner with Opera Parallèle during their 2018-19 season. We recommend that you buy early. Check out their current season online, which includes the world premiere of Marcus Shelby's Harriet's Spirit, as well as a double-bill of Jake Heggie's At the Statue of Venus and Leonard Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti.

Malte Roesner from the 2018 Barihunks Calendar

ONLY 24 DAYS LEFT TO ORDER our 2018 Barihunks Calendar, which includes 20 of opera's sexiest men is now available for purchase HERE. In response to reader demand, we've also added a Barihunks Photo Book this year, which includes additional photos that don't appear in the calendar. You can purchase that HERE. The New Year is approaching faster than you think.

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