Opera Scotland

Messa da Requiem 1988Edinburgh International Festival

Read more about the opera Messa da Requiem

This was an unusual Requiem for the Festival to bring together. The Edinburgh Festival Chorus was quite accustomed to performing the piece every few years. However, this time there was a difference, with the orchestra brought in not just from London, but from Italy.

Conductor James Conlon was an American who had worked with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra for some time, combining Mozart and Poulenc, but that was several years in the past. His period conducting Scottish Opera in Verdi's Macbeth was even further back. It was good to see him in Scotland again, and he was confirmed as an excellent interpreter of Verdi.

Of the soloists, only Gwynne Howell was in any way familiar, and that was not from his operatic work, of which he was a famed interpreter down south. In Scotlsnd he was known only for his concert appearances, and here he was every bit as reliable as would have been expected. Susan Dunn turned out to be an excellent Verdian soprano, and it was a matter of the greatest sadness when her career was curtailed by illness. By contrast, Stefania Toczyska was a familiar name, rapidly developing a career as an interpreter of the major Verdi mezzo roles. Tonio di Paolo was a late replacement, and perfectly adequate.

Performance DatesMessa da Requiem 1988

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Usher Hall | Edinburgh

1 Sep, 20.00

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