Getting ready for the big one

The big concert, that is, or concerts to be more precise. The last Tanglewood Festival Chorus concert series of the Symphony Hall part of our season is coming up, and it’s big: Hector Berlioz’s two part opera, Les Troyens. Everything about it is big: five acts divided into two nights, big chorus, big orchestra, big writing.

The background on the opera’s composition makes for some interesting reading, a classic battle between artist and public. Berlioz wrote what he felt to be a magnum opus, only to have it whittled down by the only opera house willing to perform it. Of the audiences who came to see the opera, he remarked glumly, “Yes, they are coming, but I am going.”

We’ve had a pair of rehearsals, and all I can say is that so much tonality, after the astringent aesthetic of the Bolcom, feels kind of sinful. Should be a fun run.