| Radio Fiona Rae
The Best of the Week
SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 3
Opera on Sunday (RNZ Concert, 6.00pm). John Schlesinger’s 1980 production of Offenbach’s The Tales of Hoffman was retired after this Royal Opera House production late last year: the costumes are opulent and the setting is grand, but the story of the poet who recounts his three great loves to a tavern full of students could bear an update. Italian tenor Vittorio Grigòlo is Hoffman, and American baritone Thomas Hampson is his nemesis in every tale.
MONDAY SEPTEMBER 4
The Reading: The Changeover, by Margaret Mahy (RNZ National, 10.45am). The movie starring Timothy Spall, Lucy Lawless and Melanie Lynskey will be in cinemas in a few weeks. In advance, catch Mahy’s original story about a teenager who must take a drastic step to save her little brother from a sinister toy-shop owner. This 15-part adaptation is read by the movie’s co-director, Miranda Harcourt.
Music Alive (RNZ Concert, 7.00pm). Kiwi tenor
Simon O’Neill takes the lead role of Waldemar to Dutch soprano Eva
Maria Westbroek’s Tove in tonight’s Prom performance of Schoenberg’s Gurrelieder. The post-Wagnerian cantata, known as Schoenberg’s Tristan and Isolde, features a massive orchestra, five solo singers, a speaker and multiple choruses. It tells the story of Danish King Waldemar and his mistress Tove – and Tove’s murder by the jealous queen. Sir Simon Rattle conducts the London Symphony Orchestra and Chorus.
FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 8
Music Alive (RNZ Concert, 7.30pm). Michael Hill International Violin Competition winner Bella Hristova joins Michael Houstoun for a threenight Beethovenpalooza. They are to perform all 10 Beethoven sonatas for violin and piano over the next three days (programmes two and three tomorrow). Today, live from the Auckland Town Hall, they play sonatas No 3, 8 and 7. Houstoun can also be heard in The Sunday Feature performing works by Chopin (2.00pm).