Magazine article Gramophone

E Hughes: When the Flame Dies

Magazine article Gramophone

E Hughes: When the Flame Dies

Article excerpt

E Hughes [DVD-V] When the Flame Dies  Edward Grint bar                     Poet Lucy Williams mez          Princess Death Julian Podger ten                 Orpheus Emily Phillips sop               Eurydice Andrew Radley counterten          Raymond 

New Music Players / Carlos del Cueto Video director Simon Weir

Metier [F] [2] (CD + [DVD-V]) MSV77203 (57' + 3' * DDD * PAL/NTSC * 5.1 & stereo * O * S/T)

Recorded live at Canterbury Christchurch University, October 17, 2012

DVD extra: 'The symptoms of his madness were as follows'--a film by Sheryl Jenkins

Beware: this opera may take you hostage with its ability to get under your skin and its willingness to use any technological means to do so. Besides having a typical CD recording, a separate DVD of a live performance has both PAL and NTSC on opposite sides of the disc. Loosely based on Jean Cocteau's history of heartbreak, opium addiction and impaired creativity, Hughes's Poet protagonist is faced with a choice between creating great works of art or, like Orpheus (a significant character here), bringing his deceased love back from the dead. In the cold light of reality, this premise is a straw man--why does one preclude the other?--but, as with any good opera, this one convincingly creates its own logic.

Into the Poet's grief-stricken world comes the mysterious Princess Death, who is bent on breaking through his Byronic postures with accusations that he secretly wished the death of his male partner Raymond. …

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