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date: 20 November 2019

Nurmahal, oder Das Rosenfest von Kaschmir (‘Nourmahal, or The Feast of Roses of Kashmir’)locked

  • Anselm Gerhard

Extract

(‘Nourmahal, or The Feast of Roses of Kashmir’)

Lyrisches Drama with ballet in two acts by Gaspare Spontini, to a libretto by Carl Alexander Herklots after Thomas Moore’s Lalla Rookh; Berlin, Königliches Opernhaus, 27 May 1822.

The plot expands the material in the fourth verse episode of Thomas Moore’s oriental romance Lalla Rookh with further intrigues. The quarrel between the lovers Nourmahal (soprano) and the Sultan Dsheangir [Jehanguire] (tenor) is the result of jealousy between Nourmahal and her rival Zelia (soprano); in addition, the enmity between Nourmahal’s father, Athar (bass), and Jehanguire plunges the heroine into a severe conflict of loyalty. However, Nourmahal succeeds in winning Jehanguire back at the Feast of Roses, using the magic lent to her voice by the enchantress Namuna [Namouna] (soprano).

The modernity of the exotic elements in this, the first operatic version of Moore’s story, is diluted from the start by the use of conventional operatic stereotypes, and Spontini’s score also inclines towards the classicist ...

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