The Magic Opal, opera in 2 acts
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A fantastic story of pirates, ghosts and impossible love on the shores of Karatol.
"Composer Isaac Albéniz (1860-1909) is remembered today for highly original and compelling piano works inspired by Spanish folklore.
His loftiest accomplishment remains Iberia, in which he combined a distinctive españolismo with elements of French modernism.
However, thanks to the efforts of Spanish musicologists and conductors such as Jacinto Torres and José de Eusebio, Albéniz’s operas are finally gaining the recognition they deserve as remarkable dramatic works containing some of his finest musical inspirations. Nonetheless, one stage work has yet to emerge from obscurity: The Magic Opal, an English operetta composed by Albéniz during his London period.
Although not as important or substantial as his operas, it nonetheless merits revival because of its clever and amusing music, its demonstration of Albéniz’s enormous range and versatility as a composer, as well as his international stature and impact."...
..."To our surprise, despite the disjointed process of the gestation of this work, not only can we recognize certain traits typical of Albéniz, but also, in equal measure, the conventional rhetorical schemes of Victorian comic opera, which provides us with a splendid example of Albéniz’s proven ability to absorb other styles. Moreover, the originality and the mixture of registers in works like The Magic Opal may well have effectively paved the way for the success of later titles with equally exotic contents, such as The Mikado by Gilbert and Sullivan a couple of years later."...
Walter Aaron Clark
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