Recorded live at Glyndebourne Festival Opera, June 2012
Lucy Crowe (Vixen), Emma Bell (Fox), Sergei Leiferkus (Forester), William Dazeley (Harasta), Mischa Schelomianski (Badger/Parson), Jean Rigby (Forester's Wife/Owl), Adrian Thompson (Schoolmaster/Mosquito), Colin Judson (Pásek, Innkeeper), Sarah Pring (Innkeeper’s Wife)
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Sung in Czech with subtitles in English, French, German and Korean
The tale of a quick witted fox and her escape from confinement for a life in the forest that is by turns joyful and violent, The Cunning Little Vixen is an unsentimental parable of death and rebirth that lives through the instinctive and immediate world of nature, animal and human, which Janacek loved so much.
Melly Still's production for Glyndebourne finds the 'delicate balance between whimsy and mysticism' (Daily Telegraph) at the heart of the opera, which Vladimir Jurowski conducts 'with lustrous style: you can hear the birds in the score, feel the sunshine and thrill to the starlit night sky in the final scene' (Opera Today).
Running Time: 119 minutes
Sound format: 2.0LPCD plus 5.1(5.0) DTS
Creating The Cunning Little Vixen: interviews with Lucy Crowe, Melly Still, Sergei Leiferkus, Maxine Doyle, Dinah Collin and Vladimir Jurowski
“Still, with her background in choreography and a very visceral take on children's theatre, is an ideal director. There's nothing cutesy about her treatment of the animal characters...Jurowski allows this extraordinary score to glitter and sing, his orchestral interludes breathe luminescence. Both Emma Bell (the Fox) and Crowe blaze beside Leiferkus's poignant Forester”
“I was entranced throughout. The work's humour is realized extremely well but so is its more serious side...aside from Mackerras...I've never heard the opera conducted with such colour, wit, detail and dramatic urgency...Crowe's Vixen is vocally completely secure and delightfully and sharply characterized...[in the closing scene] there is just the right sense of pantheistic rapture...an outstanding achievement.”
“Crowe particularly balances the contrasting elements of her character with skill. Sergei Leiferkus’s Forester is the other character underpinning this performance, his baritone, though aged, catches just the right element of humanity to express Janácek’s life view. Vladimir Jurowski relishes the lush orchestral palette he is given, and the score is played beautifully by the LPO.”
“Still's unsentimental production plays up the dance elements in the music, well supported by Vladimir Jurowski in the pit. Lucy Crowe is a feisty, boho Vixen and the sonorous Russian baritone Sergei Leiferkus (well into his sixties by this point) ideal casting as the Forester. The supporting roles receive tender loving care from some of the best British singers around.”
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