glass notes
Madrigal Opera announced in OMM Newsletter

Madrigal Opera

Orange Mountain Music announced that in addition to its major release of Symphony No.7, the label will be releasing Philip Glass' 1980 "A Madrigal Opera."

The Newsletter includes excerpts from all new releases including A Magridal Opera.

3 thoughts on “Madrigal Opera announced in OMM Newsletter”

  1. This will be controversial:
    What is OMM’s rational for what it releases? It seems a very large portion of the Glass works they put are unquestionably not his greatest achievements and worse yet, filler tracks that have been released time and time again (the last piano CD for example). I’ve not heard Madrigal Opera but I can think of many other more worthy pieces I’m sure.
    More controversial.
    If Dennis Russell Davies is the “champion” of Glass’s work, why is it his recordings and performances are so bland? He definitely keeps it together better than others and the orchestra plays cleanly but it seems so much more could be done interpretively. My guess is he approaches Glass from an “early music” perspective- little rubato or dynamic contrast, etc. I think this is definitely evident in things like Waiting for the Barbarians and more recently, the Toltec symphony. When I heard the Passion of Ramakrishna on NPR under a different conductor, I was enthralled. It was a wonderful piece AND a great performance! I hope when that piece gets released (IT is worthy) it will be conducted by someone else.

  2. John, as a long time fan, please allow me to offer my counterpoint.
    There’s one thing I agree with you on and another I completely disagree with.
    To start with, I do agree that ideally some of OMM’s disks could have used better “extras”. For instance, something like this new opera could have been coupled with another shorter piece to use the rest of the space of the CD. Ultimately, I think that even a CD contaning two widely different works would have worked very well. And would have sold more than twice as many copies (I think) too. There have been instances of this happening before. Extras on CDs like Symphony #2 come to mind.
    On the other hand, OMM has blessed us with many quality releases over just a few years of existence. I don’t think you can deny that. Some of these releases may not have been the absolute top priority (though who’s really to say?) but I think it’s this kind of range that makes the label so exciting.
    I think it is absolutely fantastic that something as old as “A Madrigal Opera” gets a release. I’d rather pieces like this don’t fade into obscurity.
    I am sure that OMM has it’s own rational for it’s releases and if it does come down to a one for them/one for us kind of release strategy. CD publishing is a very fragile thing. Let’s not bite into the hand that feeds.

  3. This will also be controversial: it seems bizarre to say there are more “worthy” pieces that should be released instead of Madrigal Opera. What could those more worthy works possibly be? Madrigal, Music in Eight Parts, and the works for the Mabou Mines group are, to my mind, the last unrecorded large-scale works from Glass’s early and early-middle periods. (Yes, there are still some smaller pieces as well like “In Again Out Again” and “Head On”.) I am fascinated by the period immediately after Einstein and Koyaanisqatsi and have been dying to hear Madrigal Opera for years. My hope now is that the rest of the early pieces get recorded and released at some point, including the ones that have mysteriously dropped off Glass’s official works list–such as the aforementioned “Music in Eight Parts” from the watershed year 1968.

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