9 Feb 2018

Festival Opera’s Anna Pierard’s five favourites

From Upbeat, 1:00 pm on 9 February 2018

Festival Opera founder Anna Pierard took time out of her busy Madame Butterfly schedule to discuss some of her favourite pieces of music.

Madame Butterfly opens on Tuesday February 13 in Napier as part of the Art Deco Festival. It features Sol3 Mio’s Pene Pati and rising stars from Project Prima Volta.

Anna spoke to Upbeat’s David Morriss about the Opera and work with the next generation of opera stars. She also chose five pieces of music that has had an influence on her.


Joni Mitchell – A Case of You

“I think it was my first real awareness that poetry could articulate feelings which music/melody could then enhance and carry further and faster to the listener. Also, the song is so intimate, which I loved,” Anna says.


Rachmaninov - Bless the Lord O my Soul from Vespers (no. 2)

“I love Rachmaninov to begin with,” she says. “And this piece is such a gorgeous piece for voice, and … of the transcendental nature of vocal music.”


Puccini - Vogliatemi bene from Madame Butterfly

“Puccini is a magician. This tender piece totally evokes that awakening of desire and swelling of passion. In this moment Pinkerton is truly in love with Cio Cio San,” Anna says. “The music is very loving and transitional love that you feel when you’re away from home poor old Pinkerton felt it for real in this moment.”


Puccini - Vissi d’arte from Tosca

“I just love these music motifs of Puccini. They bind the listener to the musicians in a loving embrace and interestingly, I always feel very comfortable with the relative insignificance of my life and myself, when measured alongside these anthemic sounds,” she says. “Tosca’s loves are my loves, and are greater than us all!”


Jack Body – Carol to St Stephen

“Just otherworldly transcendental!” Anna says.