8 February 2016 at 1.23pm | 2 Comments
Shakespeare’s play is notoriously tricky to stage, moving from the breakdown of King Leontes to a bittersweet resolution via romance bears and magical statues. Speaking prior to the premiere of the original production in 2014, Joby explained the challenges of capturing the vast differences:
‘Having finished Act I – which was far and away the hardest thing I’ve ever had to compose – I was able to take a deep breath and think “Right, it’s going to be easier now”. I then realized that at the start of Act II, I’m starting a completely different piece!’
The finished score is the culmination of two years work. ‘I’m incredibly proud of this music’, says the composer.
‘Act I has this musical language which is quite taught and troubled’, while Act II is ‘an absolute change… just a lovely, lovely experience’.
For the composer it was important that the score built to the emotional finale in the third act: ‘It’s reached some kind of equanimity and the music is freer to express itself.’
Watch more films like this on the Royal Opera House YouTube channel:
The Winter’s Tale runs 12 April–10 June 2016. Tickets are still available.
These performances are part of the SHAKESPEARE 400 celebrations.