This will be Solomon's Knot's first fully-staged production. Planned for Wilton's Music Hall in November 2015, it is based around an mid-17th-century 'dramma burlesco' by Antonio Abati entitled l'Ospedale, set to music by an unknown composer. Our production, by director James Hurley, brings the piece into the 21st century or even beyond: this a post-NHS, almost post-apocalyptic vision of healthcare, where certainly nothing comes for free and the system reaches its limits.
l'Ospedale is a satire and commentary on patients, doctors, medical practices and what we would today call "healthcare policy". The witty, pun-littered Italian libretto by Abati is often extremely funny, and was obviously meant to be enjoyed privately by conoscenti. It does, however, reach a violent climax and has a number of strong moral messages. In the context of our production, l'Ospedale becomes a highly entertaining, thought-provoking challenge to our ideas of what it is to be ill, and how we should be cured.
Aldeburgh Music Open Space residency
In October 2014 we were in residency at Aldeburgh Music for over two weeks, workshopping The Hospital of Incurable Madness. We finished with an Open Session which CEO Roger Wright kindly mentioned in his blog on the Britten Weekend. The workshops, as well as the audience feedback from the open sessions, were invaluable in helping us to define how we approach this complex piece and the questions that it throws up.
We are fortunate and grateful to have secured some of the funding for the full production in November 2015, as represented by the logos below. However, we are still actively seeking funds in order to mount the production, and would be grateful to hear from any interested parties.
Project repertoire & personnel
anonymous - l'Ospedale (c.1650)
Innamorato - soprano
Forestiero - soprano
Matto - countertenor
Cortigiano - tenor
Povero - baritone
Medico - bass
2 theorbos/baroque guitar ~ 'cello ~ violone ~ harpsichord ~ organ
10-21 November 2015. Wilton's Music Hall, London
11-12 March 2017. Bury Court Opera