May 12–22, 2022

Cancelled | Xerxes (HWV 40)

In the shade of the plane tree

On 15 April 1738 Handel’s Xerxes was premiered at the King’s Theatre on Haymarket – a humorous tale of confusion and intrigue that shows the Persian king as a lover instead of a statesman or general. Only four more performances followed, and the opera disappeared from the stage until 1924. These days, the work is part of the permanent repertoire of all major opera houses. Xerxes’ opening aria ‘Ombra mai fu’ has long since developed a life of its own in numerous arrangements and is cherished by amateurs and celebrities alike, whether in musical evenings at home or on stage in Carnegie Hall. Incidentally, in the aria Xerxes admires the shade of a beloved plane tree.
Sophie Rennert, who made her Göttingen debut in 2017 in the role of Lotario, is singing the title role. She is joined by other audience favourites from operas in recent years – Anna Dennis, William Berger and Christopher Ainslie.

Pre-performance talk german and english

6 pm
Lokhalle Göttingen
Free entrance with a valid ticket for an opera performace

Sophie Rennert Mezzo-soprano – Serse
Christopher Ainslie Countertenor – Arsamene
Anna Dennis Soprano – Romilda
Sophie Harmsen Mezzo-soprano – Amastre
Rachel Redmond Soprano – Atalanta
William Berger Baritone – Ariodate
Lisandro Abadie Bass-baritone – Elviro

Vokalensemble 100 Göttingen
Johanna Soller Choral director

FestspielOrchester Göttingen
Laurence Cummings Harpsichord and conductor

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