Meyerbeer Overtures Provide Light Entertainment

When I mentioned I was reviewing this new Meyerbeer recording, I discovered just how low my colleagues held his music. Robert Schumann didn’t care much for it, but I think he — and others — miss the point. Giacomo Meyerbeer wasn’t out to make pronouncements from God (like Wagner) — he wanted to write entertaining, successful operas. He achieved his goals, and the music in the collection demonstrates why.

Included are instrumental works from Meyerbeer’s biggest hits — “Robert le Diable,” “Les Huguenots,” and “L’Africaine” — along with selections from “Dianorah and Le Prophete. Meyerbeer wrote almost exclusively for the stage, and his works are unfailingly catchy and tuneful.

Darrel Ang conducts the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra with a certain amount of brio, never failing to bring out the drama of the music (without overplaying it), and keeping the energy level high. To me, this was a great collection of classical music for casual listening and I enjoyed it. I just need to be careful who I play it for.

Giacomo Meyerbeer: Overtures and Entr’actes from the French Operas
New Zealand symphony Orchestra; Darrell Ang, conductor
Naxos

More Recent Posts

  • jazz adds march 31 , 2015

    tom collier.  alone in the studio.  origin.  Unique vibraphone set list–a sly mix of  60’s pop, musical theatre and originals.  for this, Seattle multi-instrumentalist (vibraphone, marimba, piano, drums, and keyboards) tom collier leaned on his fifty years of live jazz & studio sessions to fly solo. jessi teich.    @twisted soul.  madame freak.  Dazzling comeback […]

  • WTJU Now Hiring for Richmond-based Underwriting/Marketing Specialist

    Our expansion into the Ashland-Richmond area (WHAN) brings with it many new opportunities for us, including the chance to expand our staff! We’re currently seeking a part-time Underwriter/Marketing specialist. Broadcasting from the University of Virginia since 1957, WTJU is an independent public radio station airing an eclectic mix of folk, jazz, blues, rock, classical, and […]

  • New Blues & Soul News – 3/31/2015

    New Blues and Soul News- 3/31/2015 New Blues Adds: A.J. Ghent Band – Live At Terminal West (Blue Corn): Here’s a new hybrid: AJ Ghent plays his strapped-on “Fender-esque” 8-string steel guitar like a merger of Robert Randolph and Derek Trucks and sings like a soulful combination of JC Brooks with a streak of James […]

  • Edward Burlingame Hill – the Gershwin of Harvard?

    Edward Burlingame Hill forms a link in the development of American classical music. He studied under one of the preeminent American composers of the late 19th century, John Knowles Pain at Harvard, In turn, as a Harvard professor himself, taught the next two generations of American composers, including Leonard Bernstein, Walter Piston, Virgil Thomson, Roger […]

  • April 4 Gather ‘Round: John Renbourn (2000)

    Gather ‘Round each Saturday night from 8-9 for WTJU Folk‘s concert series; both archived and live. There will be shows from The Prism Coffeehouse and VA Folklife archives mixed in with some from our announcers’ own libraries. And you never know when a live concert might pop up! This week’s program comes from a 2000 […]

  • Gallery: Paintings by Steve Keene

    Earlier this year, we asked WTJU alum and Brooklyn-based artist Steve Keene to design a Rock Marathon t-shirt for us. He benevolently donated his talents and sent us a whole stack of paintings to choose from. We selected a few of our favorites and present them here. Some of Keene’s better known album covers include […]