No, it’s not Rapunzel. The girl with the very long hair is Mélisande, heroine of Claude Debussy’s Pelléas and Mélisande.
Performed in Cardiff by the Welsh National Opera and chorus with Pierre Boulez conducting, viewers will be treated to a naturalistic interpretation perfected by director Peter Stein, famous for his ability to inject meaning into every operatic gesture and movement.
Alison Hagley and Neill Archer perform the title roles of the doomed lovers. Donald Maxwell is Golaud, Pelléas’s half brother, and their mother, Genevieve, is sung by Penelope Walker. The king and patriarch, Arkel, is Kenneth Cox.
This five-act opera has been enthusiastically received. British music critic John Steane found the opera lengthy, but added, “Once it is over, it goes on.”
Pelleas and Mélisande will be shown at Creston Valley Public Library at 7 p.m. March 28. There is no charge and all are welcome.
—BY JULIE EWASHEN