Puccini’s Toaster starts off our inaugural season with Purcell’s DIDO & AENEAS, the baroque opera by Henry Purcell, in a new arrangement and modern production.
Then, use the short blessing / that flies in possessing;
No joys are above / the pleasures of Love
– John Dryden, from Purcell’s King Arthur
Purcell’s only through-composed opera relates the story of the all-too-fleeting love between Dido, the Queen of Carthage, and her lover Aeneas, Trojan hero and son of Venus. Aeneas is wooing the stoic Dido, who has been resisting his advances. Urged by Belinda to give in to her feelings for him, the two form a union. However, a Sorceress, full of spite against Carthage and her Queen, plots to separate them: an emissary disguised as Mercury will convince Aeneas he must leave Carthage for Italy. Aeneas with a heavy heart announces his departure; Dido with Queenly stature casts Aeneas from her presence. She reveals however that death awaits her now that her lover is gone.
In their first production as ‘Artists in Residence’ at the ehemaliges Stummfilmkino Delphi, Puccini’s Toaster have chosen a 17th-century piece which offers music of sublime quality and poetry of deceptive perspicacity. With professional singers, musicians and an experienced creative team, and embracing the wonderfully unique attributes of the venue, the production offers a new perspective on an ancient story.