Conductor Daniel Rostoni triumphs in Hector Berlioz’s “Les Troyens” – Culture

At the end of the applause, the choir opens the Ukrainian flag, having previously sang in black attire and speechlessly for five hours at the Bavarian State Opera. It’s all amazing because these great singers have just heralded ‘eternal hate’, ‘bitter war’ and ‘bloodbath’ at the end. why? because of a trifle. Because the Carthaginian leader Didon was abandoned by the Trojan chief Aeneas, which is bad enough, but according to today’s understanding would not justify war. But the ancients knew otherwise and better. The Trojan War, about which Hector Berlioz’s huge opera “Les Troyens” is based, was triggered by the story of a woman, and also by a trifle. This message, quite clear at the moment, is certainly spreading in Munich: that war, rape, murder and destruction require no great circumstances or justifications.

But there’s also Danielle Rostioni, born in Milan in 1983 and the house’s first leading guest and magician. Under his leadership, the state orchestra weaves the finest veil of sound, unleashing rhythms of elegance and seduction, and allows polyphony, often grounded on subversive maneuvers, to emerge as a living being. It also suggests to the listener that strings are not just sounds, they can also be erotic and smelly. It’s been a long time since there was so much synergy in Munich. Rostoni and his fellow magicians make it clear at every moment that Berlioz composes somewhat selflessly and in catchy numbers against the military literary text he himself wrote after pro-state Virgil declared “stubborn”, that he himself lends refinement and joy to the parades and the music of death. The text, however, is largely indecisive to the war for glorification. This fuels thought, as well as the fact that the best ancient texts, such as The Iliad, The Odyssey, Oresti and The Obstinate, which remain the most influential on European culture, sing about the Trojan War: literature for men.

So Enée sings too—Gregory Conde has a trumpet-like tone dulled in her tenderness—to his son: “I will only teach you the trade of war and respect for the gods.” After a few pages of results, this educational structure evokes peace, magic, and a “drunken night.” People are deeply paradoxical, Berlioz claims this when authoring, the sensitive and the destructive can live without paradox in the same breast. And the woman?

Why was Didon so shaken by her adoration, that she not only disappeared with Eni, but even her death?

“Les Troyens” tells the story of two emancipated working women who were hurt by love and committed suicide. Cassandre, Marie-Nicole Lemieux is strict, serious and works as a fortune teller, but no one takes her warnings seriously. Not even her beloved Chorèbe, whom Stéphane Degout sang with a wonderfully dazzling and sustained baritone, present, unobtrusive, noble, sexy. Digot is by far the best singer this evening. When Greek mercenaries storm Troy, Cassander kills himself along with several other women, Part One, Freedom or Death, ends terribly.

Didon on the other hand – Ekaterina Semenchuk intervened only a few days before and triumphed, like Gregory Conde, in clear and loud colors – her Carthago established Didon. Directed by Christophe Honoré, This is a heaven to feel happy, especially for gay men. Candid little films full of homosexual love and then irritate some in the audience. Men make love here in Carthage, war in Troy, and the Trojans spend a few pleasant hours with the Carthaginian Didon. Then he goes in turn to found a city, Rome, this is the divine mission, duty comes before love. But why does Didon, shaken by her adoration, not simply go with him, but like Cassander until her death?

“Le Troyens” is full of contradictions. Christophe Honoré, best known in France as a children’s book author, filmmaker and theater director, doesn’t bother to make things clear. It simply lets them live with a loving lack of attention. Catherine Leah Taj provided him with the foundations of a concrete sanctuary, which once housed war-ravaged Troy, and then the enclosed Garden of Pleasures at Carthage. The Trojans roam the fugitives as a band of exiled Jesuits who like to slaughter the “disgusting horde of Africans” (O-Ton Berlioz libretto). The soloists make all the uninspiring gestures and gait that the lack of evidence suggests. Only in the final picture is an intense passion for singing shown, which, as always, catches the eye. Not forgetting that this evening, in its openness, poses above all questions to the audience: How do you feel about war, love and your high culture?

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