Andriessen's Writing to Vermeer released on disc(May 2006)
Andriessen's Writing to Vermeer released on disc
Louis Andriessen’s opera Writing to Vermeer has been released on disc by Nonesuch, the latest of a series of acclaimed releases on the label.
With libretto by Peter Greenaway and staging by Greenaway and Saskia Boddeke, Netherlands Opera enjoyed two sell-out runs of Louis Andriessen's Writing to Vermeer at the Muziektheater in Amsterdam in 1999 and 2004. This was followed by stagings at the Adelaide Festival and Lincoln Center Festival in New York and a concert performance at the South Bank Centre in London. Electronic interludes, composed by Michel van der Aa, cut across the domestic life of the Vermeer household with increasing violence. Finally stage and music are engulfed as the dykes are opened to flood the country and repel the French invaders.
"Louis Andriessen once referred to Writing to Vermeer as his delicate, feminine daughter, in contrast to the brutal son that was their [Andriessen and Greenaway’s] first opera Rosa. Toothsome and supple as she may be, however, this daughter is not without teeth… The piece is less a conventional opera that a series of tableaux vivants, whose music conveys both the purity and the latent complexity of Vermeer’s day – or rather contemporary impressions of that period – in a manner that is both thoroughly modern and epoch-appropriate… Nonesuch has gone out of its way to make this recording a striking sonic document."
Time Out New York
"There has always been a gentler, more intimate side to Andriessen’s work… Vermeer opens with quiet, transparent scoring like rays of sun at dawn in the endless sky of a Dutch landscape. But gradually darkness encroaches… Altogether absorbing."
"Though more refined and thoughtful than many Andriessen scores, this is a rambunctiously eventful piece, and as fine and substantial as any opera score of the last decade."
Andriessen’s current operatic project is La Commedia, based on Dante’s great poetic journey through inferno, paradise and purgatory. The premiere is scheduled by the Netherlands Opera for the Holland Festival in 2008, with further performances planned in Liverpool as part of its European Capital of Culture celebrations.
For further information on Andriessen visit www.boosey.com/andriessen
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