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Sunday Afternoon at the Opera - Tippett: The Midsummer Marriage

06/23/2013 1:00 pm
06/23/2013 4:30 pm


Sunday Afternoon at the Opera host Keith Brown writes:

Sir Michael Tippett's The Midsummer Marriage (1955) is a modern reinterpretation of the ancient pagan solstice myth about the union of opposites. As with all his other dramatic works, Tippett wrote his own libretto for his solstice opera. General acceptance of such a strange, dream-like work as viable lyric theater was a long time coming. In terms of the psychology of dreams, and the archetypal figures that arise from our collective unconscious, this is the most Jungian of all operas.

The Midsummer Marriage was recorded in 1970 following its staged production at Covent Garden, with Sir Colin Davis conducting the orchestra and chorus. Originally released through the Philips label on stereo LP's, the recording came back into circulation as a Lyrita two-CD set. I presented the Lyrita reissue of The Midsummer Marriage on Sunday, May 28, 2000. You hear the opera today on three vintage vinyl discs.