Notes and Editorial Reviews
Cold Mountain, composed by Pulitzer Prize-winning American composer
Jennifer Higdon, set to a libretto by Gene Scheer and based on a 1997 National Book Award-winning novel by Charles Frazier, is one of the three operas that will be released in the
American Opera Series in 2016. It received its world premiere at The Santa Fe Opera on August 1, 2015 where it was performed by
The Santa Fe Opera Orchestra, conducted by
Miguel Hart-Bedoya and recorded live for this SACD album. It was co-commissioned by and is a co-production with both Opera Philadelphia and the Minnesota Opera.
"After years of searching for a story that would be the focus of my first opera, I read the first several pages of Charles Frazier's award-winning Cold Mountain and realized this was it. [...] Looking to confirm my suspicion, I checked and discovered that the [Higdon] family farm was a mere 60 miles, as the crow flies, from Cold Mountain. Writing this opera would be a recollection of the landscape of my formative years... a familiarity that I would welcome in a new-to-me genre." - Jennifer Higdon
The characters are allowed to sing in natural (even if not 100 percent authentic Southern accents), and the leads, Nathan Gunn as the Confederate deserter Inman and Isabel Leonard as his self-reliant beloved Ada Monroe, are dramatically convincing. A worthwhile operatic entry in the long line of American vocal works descending from Aaron Copland’s The Tender Land.
– All Music Guide