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Adams: The Death of Klinghoffer / Nagano, Sylvan, Maddalena


Release Date: 11/17/1992 
Label:  Nonesuch   Catalog #: 79281   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  John Adams
Performer:  Eugene PerrySanford SylvanJames MaddalenaStephanie Friedman,   ... 
Conductor:  Kent Nagano
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Opera ChorusLyon Opera Orchestra
Number of Discs: 2 
Recorded in: Stereo 
Length: 2 Hours 15 Mins. 

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This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.

Notes and Editorial Reviews

Includes a 172-page booklet with liner notes and full libretto.

The Death of Klinghoffer is a serious, beautiful, and nuanced work that engages with one of the intractable tragedies of our era.

If Adams’s Nixon in China seemed like a modern equivalent of Handelian heroic comedy, Klinghoffer resembles a Handel opera in its juxtaposition of aria and choral commentary. The opening choruses of Palestinians and Jews in exile recalls Handel’s opposition of Israelites and Babylonians in Belshazzar. Like Handel, too, Adams has composed a theatre of the imagination... [t]he musical performance under Nagano is exemplary. James Maddalena is the captain of the Achille Lauro and
Read more Sanford Sylvan is moving as the hapless, wheelchair-bound Klinghoffer, whom the Palestinian hijackers murder and throw overboard. Sheila Nadler brings the opera to its stunned, hushed conclusion as his sorrowing wife.

– Hugh Canning, BBC Music Magazine

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John Adams’s controversial opera, with libretto by Alice Goodman, addresses the 1985 terrorist hijacking of the Achille Lauro ocean liner. Followings its 1991, Peter Sellars–directed premiere, the New York Times said the work “transmutes contemporary history into operatic poetry.” The Los Angeles Times' Mark Swed calls it "a haunting and meaningful meditation on terrorism, its roots and causes," and The New Statesman says it's "an intense and solemn St. Matthew Passion for the late 20th century." The work received its long-awaited London premiere by the English National Opera in February 2012.

The Times of London gave the piece a four-star review and called the opera "a serious work of art" and the production "absorbing and provocative." In a four-star review of the production, the Guardian called it “a major achievement,” citing “the sheer beauty of so much of Adams's score, with its dark-hued sonorities, chromatically inflected harmonies, and keening instrumental lines.”

In an editorial in the same paper, The Death of Klinghoffer was described as “a serious, beautiful and nuanced work that engages with one of the intractable tragedies of our era.”
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Works on This Recording

1.
Death of Klinghoffer by John Adams
Performer:  Eugene Perry (Baritone), Sanford Sylvan (Baritone), James Maddalena (Baritone),
Stephanie Friedman (Mezzo Soprano), Thomas Hammons (Baritone), Janice Felty (Mezzo Soprano),
Thomas Young (Tenor), Sheila Nadler (Mezzo Soprano)
Conductor:  Kent Nagano
Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Opera Chorus,  Lyon Opera Orchestra
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1989-1991; USA 
Date of Recording: 1991 
Venue:  Maurice Ravel Auditorium, Lyon, France 
Length: 135 Minutes 13 Secs. 
Language: English 

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