I saw it on pbs about three years ago, but never caught the title. I remember in one act there was a large set of a building’s exterior and a instrumental orchestra was playing. Through the large windows you see peasants wondering about the corridors while these grenadier soldiers slowly march after them. The lighting is very dim so you only see their sillouettes. The soldiers may have been wearing blue or white uniforms.
Does anyone know what this could be? I apologize I can’t be more descriptive.
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Best I can do is offer operas shown on PBS within the past years (or so) which features soldiers as part of the cast:
La Fille du Regiment by Donizetti (Mes a Mis at ::, music lesson scene at ::): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrbwbOTQfFQ
L’Elisir d’Amore by Donizetti (soldiers featured @ :: and @ ::) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LdznGGjo
Carmen by Bizet (this is a : clip of the Habanera): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-YYRDUxGC
Faust by Gounod has a soldier’s chorus @ approx. ::: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsbloZdXSw
Good luck with your search. You could also look on Great Performance’s website under Episodes > by Genre > Opera : http://www.pbs.org/wnet/gperf/category/episodes/by… as all of the PBS operas are part of the Great Performances series.
I’m sorry, but the visual part of an opera nowadays may have absolutely nothing to do with the composer’s intentions, and everything to do with the random whim of the director. THat makes it really impossible to guess what this opera could have been. Can you give us any idea at all about the music? Was it, for exa,ple, baroque, romantic, or what?