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An Aria A Day #42

‘Nightmare Song’
from Iolanthe
by Gilbert & Sullivan
Piano Narelle French

19th June, 2020

Filmed in the backyards, bathrooms, kitchens and living rooms of artists across the globe, our new daily digital program #AnAriaADay offers you a front row seat from your home to some of the greatest arias of all time. A new performance is released every evening at 6pm until we can return to the stage.

Written at the peak of Gilbert and Sullivan’s creative years and their seventh work together, ‘Iolanthe’ tells the story of a fairy who has been banished from fairyland due to her outlawed marriage to a mortal. British actor and singer Bryan Probets performs the Lord Chancellor’s ‘Nightmare Song’ in which he describes a nightmare caused by his unrequited love for Phyllis, an Arcadian shepherdess and Ward in Chancery. Interestingly, Sullivan’s music for the fairies reflects Richard Wagner’s style, including a distinctive four-note theme associated with the character of Iolanthe.

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