The City by ProQuest

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									630                                                                   Notes, March 2010

creates a vivid sound world, complimented       seemed overly loud in comparison to the
on stage by the sets and costumes by            rest of the orchestra. Still, these are minor
Francis O’Connor.                               issues. The entire cast (with mezzo-soprano
   Pinocchio, commissioned by Opera North       Victoria Simmonds in the title role) gives a
with Sadler’s Wells Theatre and Chemnitz        consistently fine performance, and their
Opera, had its world premiere on 21 De-         voices are well-balanced with the orchestra.
cember 2007 at the Grand Theatre and               The extra features of this two-disc set in-
Opera House, Leeds. The resultant DVDs          clude a synopsis, cast gallery, and enlight-
were recorded by Opus Arte at Sadler’s          ening interviews with the composer, libret-
Wells Theatre in London on 29 February          tist, stage director, and conductor. A useful
and 1 March 2008. Overseen by recording         booklet is also included. The high produc-
director Thomas Grimm, the recording is         tion values of this recording are all the
a pleasure both visually and aurally, with      more impressive given how quickly it was
few flaws. While the close camera work           produced, and this opera, a welcome addi-
throughout was useful in capturing the sub-     tion to the repertory, is bound to please
tleties of the singers’ expressions, certain    viewers of all ages.
scenes (such as the marionette scene)
would have benefited from a wider camera                                     Ryan Ebright
angle. And, in the finale, the drum set                University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

The City. DVD. Angel Gil-Ordonez / Post-Classical Ensemble. Music by
Aaron Copland. Directed by Ralph Steiner and Willard Van Dyke.
Canada: Naxos 2.110231, 2009. $17.99.
   To Aaron Copland, writing music for          is represented by pastoral, consonant mu-
Hollywood films represented an opportu-          sic, while urban conditions are shown to
nity to reach a much wider audience than        dissonant, rhythmically jarring portions of
was typically possible for composers of con-    the score. Additionally, there is often a
cert music. Hollywood film scoring was,          strong physical correlation between specific
however, according to George Antheil,           images and musical figures, such as the
“a closed corporation” (Modern Music 15,        clarinet triplet passage that plays while the
no. 1 [November-December 1937]). Holly-         viewer is shown a water wheel.
wood studios were reluctant to hire com-           The new recording of the score surpasses
posers without previous film experience;         the original in many respects. There is
Copland would therefore need a film              greater dynamic range, more detail of or-
credit, and documentary films were a viable      chestral color, and in general, the score
path to the requisite credentials.              works better as abstract music in the hands
   The City, made for the 1939 World’s Fai
								
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