Notes and Editorial Reviews
MICHAEL DAUGHERTY (*1954):
Jackie O, Opera in two acts Libretto by Wayne Koestenbaum
Fiona McAndrew; Nora Sourouzian; Simone Alberghini; Paul Carey Jones; Alice Quintavalla; Elizabeth Grayson; Enea Scala
Christopher Franklin, conductor
Damiano Michieletto, director; Paolo Fantin, scenes; Claudia Pernigotti, costumes; Robert Pizzuto, choreograph
NTSC All Region; 16:9; SS 5.1/LPCM 2.0; Approx. 94 mins.
Subtitled in Italian, English, German, French & Spanish
Jackie O was co-commissioned in 1995 by the Houston Grand Opera and Banff Centre and premiered in 1997 with great success.
Inspired by Jacqueline ”Jackie” Lee Bouvier Kennedy Onassis (1929-1994), the opera
focuses on the dramatic turning point of her life in the 1960s.
The music I have composed for Jackie O explores the interplay of various musical idioms associated with “high” opera and “popular” musical theatre, rock and jazz.
The 1960s were also a time when political assassinations, civil rights reform, drugs, Woodstock, pop art and the Vietnam War were dramatically changing the face of America. The world turned an unwilling Jackie Kennedy, and later an unwilling Jackie Onassis, into a celebrity, and later an icon of the political and social turmoil of her time. Her storybook marriage in 1953 to John F. Kennedy and her journey to the White House endeared her to the public. President Kennedy’s assassination in 1963 shocked the world. In 1968, her controversial second marriage to Greek shipping tycoon Aristotele Onassis allowed her to retreat from public life.
..To dramatize the opposition between the private and the public Jackie of W. Koestenbaum’s brilliant libretto, I create moments of extroverted grand spectacle such as “1968” and “Stiff Drink”. These public moments are contrasted with more intimate solo arias such as “Egyptian Time” and introspective duets such as the “Flame Duet” and “Jack’s Song”.
... each character in the opera has a unique sound world. Jackie’s arias are exotic, mournful and highly expressive. By contrast, the songs performed by Ari have a Vegas sound, reminiscent of Dean Martin or members of the Sixties “Rat Pack.” Maria gets the operatic treatment, but since she was losing her voice in the sixties, Maria sings melodramatically in the low range, and even speaks on occasion. Liz Taylor sings bluesy, “cat-on-a-hot-tin-roof” riffs, while Princess Grace croons a la Doris Day. Andy Warhol’s aria, like his art, is a series of inflected repetitions.
The chorus plays an important role throughout the opera.
DVD EXTRA CONTENTS:
Interviews of Michael Daugherty, Fiona Mc Andrew, Nora Sourouzian, Simone Alberghini.
Works on This Recording
Jackie O by Michael Daugherty
Elizabeth Grayson (Voice),
Simone Alberghini (Bass),
Fiona McAndrew (Voice),
Nora Sourouzian (Voice),
Alice Quintavalla (Voice),
Enea Scala (Tenor)
Bologna Teatro Comunale Orchestra,
Lugo Teatro Rossini Orchestra
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1995-1997; USA
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