ⓘ Medea in Corinto


ⓘ Medea in Corinto

Medea in Corinto is an 1813 opera in Italian by the composer Simon Mayr. It takes the form of a melodramma tragico in two acts. The libretto, by Felice Romani, is based on the Greek myth of Medea and the plays on the theme by Euripides and Pierre Corneille. The same subject had formed the basis for Luigi Cherubinis famous opera Medee which may have had an influence on Mayrs work. Medea in Corinto was first performed at the Teatro San Carlo, Naples on 28 November 1813 and was Mayrs greatest theatrical success.


1. Synopsis

Act One

Jason Giasone has rejected his former wife, Medea, in favour of Creusa, daughter of King Creon Creonte of Corinth. Creon banishes Medea from the city and she swears revenge. Meanwhile, King Aegeus Egeo of Athens arrives in Corinth. He had been promised Creusa as his bride. Finding he has been rejected, he makes a pact with Medea. As Jason and Creusa are being married in the temple, Medea bursts in with Aegeuss soldiers and a fight breaks out as they attempt to carry off the bride and bridegroom.

Act Two

Creons men have defeated and captured Medea and Aegeus. In prison, Medea uses her magic powers to summon up demons from the underworld. She kills Creusa with a poisoned robe then stabs her own - and Jasons - children to death, before making her escape in a chariot pulled by flying dragons. In despair, Jason attempts suicide in vain.


2. Recordings

  • Elzbieta Szmytka, Evelyn Pollock, Mark Milhofer, Lawrence Brownlee, Wojtek Gierlach, Sinfonieorchester & Chorus Theater St Gallen, conducted by David Stern oehms classics, 2010
  • Jane Eaglen, Yvonne Kenny, Bruce Ford, Raul Gimenez, Alistair Miles, Philharmonia Orchestra, conducted by David Parry Opera Rara, 1997
  • Nadja Michael, Ramon Vargas, Alastair Miles, Alek Shrader, Elena Tsallagova, Bayerische Staatsoper, conducted by Ivor Bolton, stage directed by Hans Neuenfels Arthaus DVD, 2010
  • Leyla Gencer, William Johns, Gianfranco Casarini, Gianfranco Pastine, Cecilia Fusco, Luigi Paolillo, Ivana Cavallini, Ermanno Lorenzi, Teatro San Carlo Orchestra and Chorus, conducted by Maurizio Arena Myto Records, 1977
  • Marisa Galvany, Joan Patenaude, Molly Stark, Allen Cathcart, Robert White, Thomas Palmer, Clarion Concerts, conducted by Newell Jenkins Vanguard, 1969