Opera Scotland

Actéon 1985Les Arts Florissants

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The operatic contribution to the 1985 Edinburgh Festival was largely French in origin. At the King's John Eliot Gardiner displayed his Lyon company in two revelatory productions - a fresh look at Pelléas et Mélisande and an unknown delight in Chabrier's Etoile. We also enjoyed the first visit by William Chistie's Les Arts Florissants, in a double-bill of baroque delights, Rameau (Anacréon) and Charpentier (Actéon).

The first visit to Britain by this famous French group consisted of a double bill of one-act pieces. The evening opened (rather late, it must be said, on opening night) with Rameau's Anacréon, which, is a less inspired work than his full-length operas, but still contains much of value. Actéon followed after the interval, and proved to be quite fascinating, an absolute treasure. Both works were beautifully performed in period style, but Actéon, unknown until relatively recently, definitely had the edge. The transformation scene as the hero observes himself turning into a stag is quite remarkable, with masterly and utterly memorable performance by Dominique Visse.

Performance DatesActéon 1985

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Royal Lyceum Theatre | Edinburgh

18 Aug, 19.30 19 Aug, 19.30

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