As the Proms will be featuring Smyth’s music on no fewer than FIVE concerts during the 2022 season, BBC Culture ran a detailed article on her life and music last week. Beverley D’Silva interviewed Leah Broad, Sophie Fuller, Melly Still, Stephen Langridge and Amy Zigler in advance of the July 24 Prom 13 semi-staged performance of The Wreckers by the Glyndebourne Opera Company.
Read the article here.
Listen to the BBC Radio 3 broadcast through the end of August here.
Subscribe to Glyndebourne’s livestream and watch the production yourself here.
From 21 May to 24 June 2022, Glyndebourne Festival Opera will present Smyth’s most famous work the way Smyth originally intended it. ‘The Wreckers’ was supposed to be in French – the libretto by Brewster was written in his preferred poetic language and Smyth hoped soprano Calvé and conductor Messager would take it on – but a German premiere necessitated a translation. Now, after painstaking archival research, the team at Glyndebourne has restored the original French libretto and many sections that were cut following the 1906 premiere. The result is supposedly a work with greater nuance and depth than the English version often performed today.
You can learn more about the upcoming production of ‘The Wreckers’ (Les Naufrageurs) and how they restored the original text and music here.
Tickets still available!
On March 14, 2021, Sarah Brailey, Dashon Burton, James Blachly and the Experiential Orchestra won a Grammy award for Best Classical Solo Vocal Album for Smyth’s The Prison.
This is Smyth’s first Grammy, and the first Grammy awarded to a historical female composer.
The hour-long work was released by Chandos Records on August 7, 2020.
Liner notes were contributed by Elizabeth Wood, Amy Zigler, and James Blachly.
Check out the press release in Musical America for the upcoming CD release of Ethel Smyth’s The Prison, performed by the Experiential Orchestra and soprano Sarah Brailey and bass-baritone Dashon Burton, conducted by James Blachly!
CD to be released August 7, 2020 on Chandos Records and is already available for pre-order on Amazon!
For more information on the history and manuscripts of The Wreckers, be sure to listen to BBC Radio 4’s episode of Tales from the Stave!
Feel free to browse our Music Manuscripts list! The list of music manuscripts and correspondence was compiled by Amy Zigler.
The Fisher Center at Bard College has made available Ethel Smyth’s most successful opera, The Wreckers, first performed in 1906.
Staged in 2015 for the SummerScape series, this is the first time one of Smyth’s operas is available for viewing online.
For more about this performance, read Amy Zigler’s review here.