products 1 – – Composer: Philip Glass – Score – HL – Philip Glass: Satyagraha Act 3 – Conclusion (Organ) – HL – Philip Glass is recognised as one of the leading figures in minimalism enchants and hypnotises the viewer just as much as Glass’s score. The opera’s staying power owes much to Mr. Glass’s haunting score. But its perennial relevance is also baked into the libretto, which.

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Satyagraha | The Music | English National Opera

Our website uses cookies to give you the best possible vlass. Continue using the site as normal or read our Privacy Policy. Opera in three acts.

Songs from the Trilogy. Philip Glass Satyagraha Naidoo, Indian co-worker – soprano Mrs. Alexander, European friend – alto Lord Krishna, mythological character from the Bhagavad-Gita – bass Prince Arjuna, mythological character from the Bhagavad-Gita – baritone Non-singing parts: The opera is semi-narrative in form and deals with Mahatma Gandhi’s early years in South Africa and his development of non-violent protest into a political tool.

Satyagraha is a Sanskrit word meaning ‘truth force’.

The first two acts each contain three scenes; the last is one continuous scene. Each act is dominated by a single historic figure non-singing role overlooking the action from above: Dortmund Theatre, Germany Dortmunder Philharmoniker.

Philip Glass – Satyagraha () – Music Sales Classical

Back at the Coliseum for its second revival since satagraha, English National Opera’s production of Philip Glass’s opera about Gandhi’s early non-violent campaigns against racism in South Africa, remains a really striking achievement on many levels, and an unmissable music theatre experience.

If anything, its broad philosophical message is even more profound now than before, in the wake of today’s unrighted injustices and often wilfully unlearned lessons of the financial crisis. It is surely the most scode and brillaitn achievement on the London operatice scene in more than a decade Do anything – anything none violent, of course – satyagraja see it now. It is surely the distinctive and brilliant achievement on the London operatic scene in more than a decade Do anything – anything non-violent, of course – to see it now.


The production has since been to New York’s Metropolitan Opera, and its return to the ENO reaffirms its dramatic potency, with giant papier-mache puppets, video projections and eloquently choreographed movement.

Opera Profile: Philip Glass’ ‘Satyagraha’

As the still focus of Glass’s meditation on non-violent protest, he sings with an otherworldly beauty. The high soprano of Elena Xanthoudakis, who plays Miss Schlesen, his secretary, adds a silvery edge to the slowly satyageaha vocal ensembles.

Stuart Stratford conducts this time satyagrahaa and makes the score seem more ravishing than ever, every phrase beautifully balanced, every chord immaculately spaced, a reminder that before minimalism was invented, Glass studied in Paris with Nadia Boulanger, and has maintained the craftsmanship he acquired there.

Admiration is redoubled most of all, though, for McDermott and Crouch, who trust the music to work its hypnotic spell, and balance its moments of stasis against the freewheeling, dramatically appropriate imagery.

It’s a must-see for anyone who missed the first run, and a landmark in recent London opera. After a cautious start, the conductor Stuart Stratford finds the pulse points and draws each passage to its glowing climax.

The opera concludes as Gandhi looks ahead to the future: So what more do you want from your opera? From the moment when Alan Oke Gandhi began his ineffably sweet opening aria over a gentle cello ostinato, I was caught and held by the sheer beauty of sayyagraha staging, singing, and playing in the pit.

The Truth about Satyagraha at the London Coliseum

Directors Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch work with big simple gestures, letting their imagery morph organically: Leo Tolstoy who inspired him, Rabindranath Tagore who counselled him, and Martin Luther King Jr, who carried on the torch of peaceful mass-resistance after he had died. This show as a whole satyaraha a masterpiece. Everybody who is anybody flocked to the Met on April 11 for what Peter Gelb unblushingly labelled ‘a modern masterpiece Glass’s masterpiece, the work in which his musical style finds its most perfect and personal expression: With its slowly shifting timbres, Glass’s music has always had an integrity that’s missing in, say, the more ‘maximalist’ style of John Adams, another composer interested in modern historical figures, and that purity finds a natural outlet in Satyagraha.


A continuous cross-cutting of of actual events in Johannesburg and Natal gives the three acts a non-linear structure that is also in keeping sore Eastern philosophical thought. As the opening solo is gradually gathered up into duet, trio and- eventually- a stirring chorus, the cumulative power of Glass’s music takes hold: The text derives from the Bhagavad Gita with its vision of the spiritually secure, peaceful warrior aware of the inviolable divinity within all beings.

In keeping with eastern philosophical thought, past, present and future are elided and the narrative glides backwards and forwards through time The repetitive figurations of Glass’s music, meanwhile, act like mantras, and aim to quieten the jangling of our own minds as we watch and listen.

It is an astonishingly beautiful work, though some may find Glass’s idiom forbidding It is impossible, however, to imagine a better execution