Laurence Cummings conductor Olivia Fuchs director takis set and costume designer Jake Wiltshire lighting designer
Handel Semele, HWV 58
Handel wrote Semele in English for maximum impact, though it is considered ‘no oratorio, but a baudy opera’ (Charles Jennens). Conceived as an allegory on unbridled ambition, greed and lust, Handel drew on the story of Semele who, as a pawn in the battle between Juno and Jupiter, is destroyed by her wish to become immortal.
This witty, cautionary tale reverberates with echoes of contemporary events, showing how power can corrupt and individuals are exploited when egocentricity reigns.
‘To stir, to rouse, to shake the soul he comes And Jove’s own thunders follow Mars’s drums.’