- 01. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 1: Museum4'17"
- 02. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 2: Courtroom2'07"
- 03. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 3: Museum0'35"
- 04. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 4: Shop5'08"
- 05. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 5: Consumers' self-help group1'55"
- 06. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 6: Shop2'10"
- 07. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 7: Museum2'02"
- 08. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 8: Police Station3'34"
- 09. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 9: Museum1'05"
- 10. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 10: Museum1'36"
- 11. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 11: Psychiatrist's consulting room2'17"
- 12. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 11: Psychiatrist's consulting room4'22"
- 13. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 13: Shop1'10"
- 14. The Shops: Part 1: Scene 14: Consumers' self-help group3'30"
- 15. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 15: Christoph's bedroom3'22"
- 16. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 16: Museum2'23"
- 17. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 17: Stamp dealer's showroom2'22"
- 18. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 18: Police Station9'07"
- 19. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 19: Adele's house2'21"
- 20. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 20: Consumers' self-help group3'14"
- 21. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 21: Adele's house1'18"
- 22. The Shops: Part 2: Scenes 22 and 23: Police Station2'42"
- 23. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 24: Police Station3'41"
- 24. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 25: Police Station1'54"
- 25. The Shops: Part 2: Scene 26: Police Station2'42"
Edward Rushton's The Shops, with a libretto by Dagny Gioulami, has been described as ‘part satire on rampant consumerism, part psychological thriller’: its central character, Christoph Schmalhans, is an obsessive stamp collector, stealing prize examples from museums with the aid of his girlfriend Francesca, who distracts attention by causing scenes. His activities inevitably attract the interest of the police and psychologists, and interjections from a support group of shopaholics.
Christoph Schmalhans is a collector. Each item in his collection has been individually stolen from museums and galleries.
Christoph works in a shop alongside his girlfriend Francesca. She helps his thefts from museums by causing disturbances which act as decoys. She goes shopping to spend the rewards Christoph gives her. Following his arrest, Christoph is interviewed by a stamp collecting policeman and analyzed by a psychologist. They report to Christoph’s trial.
Christoph’s father left his mother when he was still a child. He now lives alone with his mother, but refuses ever to allow her into his bedroom. When Francesca tells her about his arrest, his mother decides to destroy the collection.
The Opera Group
Darren Abrahams, tenor - Christoph
Anna Dennis, soprano - Francesca, his girlfriend
Phyllis Cannan, contralto - Adele, his mother
Richard Burkhard, baritone - Oliver, a police officer
Louise Mott, mezzo-soprano - Cordula, a psychiatrist
Paul Reeves, bass - Roger, retired journalist
Patrick Bailey, conductor
Paul Plummer, assistant conductor
John Fulljames, director
"A witty, telling and rather timely critique of consumerism ... Rushton, a modernist by inclination, but one with a light and lyrical touch, writes beautifully for the voice, and Gioulami's libretto - which also makes space for a wonderfully parodic consumers' self-help group - does its job brilliantly. Patrick Bailey ably conducts the Opera Group's excellent performance." The Sunday Times
Produced in association with BBC Radio 3
Royal Opera House, London in collaboration with BBC Radio 3.
Workshop development through OperaGenesis, an ROH2 initiative, developed in association with the Genesis Foundation.
Producer for BBC Radio 3: PHILIP TAGNEY
Producer for NMC Recordings: DAVID LEFEBER
Recording Engineer for BBC Radio 3: MARVIN WARE
Editing and Mastering: DAVID LEFEBER
Executive Producer: COLIN MATTHEWS
Cover image: ANJA KÖHLER
Design: MORGAN / HALL
(P) 2008 NMC Recordings Ltd / BBC / The Opera Group