Heralding The Opera Platform’s first stream from Theatre Basel in Switzerland, director Nicolas Brieger offers his vision of Charpentier’s MÉDÉE as a timeless tragedy.
She is one of the most complex and fascinating characters from Greek mythology. The magician Medea has inspired artists from Antiquity to today. From Euripides to Pascal Quignard via Delacroix and Mishima, her destiny, which involved a succession of murders and their consequences, has been the subject of many interpretations, especially in the theatre and at the opera.
Infanticide, fratricide and regicide – here is an ultimate tragic character driven in search of the ultimate and breaking all taboos along the way. Abandoned by her husband Jason (of Golden Fleece fame) for a younger woman, Medea assassinates her rival and her own children to deny to her betrayer all possibility of happiness.
Marc-Antoine Charpentier wrote MÉDÉE in 1693, based on the libretto of Thomas Corneille (brother of playwright Pierre Corneille). This was the first operatic version of a relatively young art form at the time.
Magdalena Kožená leads a fine cast accompanied by La Cetra Barockorchester in Basel under the baton of Andrea Marcon. This is a powerful opera unjustly neglected, which Nicolas Brieger stages as a universal tragedy in all its shocking horror.