Tuesday, May 5, 2015
While everyone is still buzzing about this year’s Salzburg Easter Festival, I was visited by the Ghost of Easter Past. The spirit took me back to 2010 (Götterdämmerung was the opera that year) to a glorious Verdi Requiem with the Berliner Philharmoniker led by Mariss Jansons and two of my favorite contemporary singers: Krassimira Stoyanova and Jonas Kaufmann. I scheduled this performance several weeks ago, but it now takes on a special significance in light of the ongoing tragedy in Nepal. I hope you will consider joining me in making a contribution to a humanitarian aid organization. Giuseppe Verdi: Requiem Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks Berliner Philharmoniker Mariss Jansons, conductor Osterfestspiele Salzburg Großes Festspielhaus 30 March 2010 Krassimira Stoyanova, soprano Jonas Kaufmann, tenor Maria Prudenskaya, mezzo-soprano Stephen Milling, bass
Aleksandra Kurzak as Fiorilla and Ildebrando D'Arcangelo as Selim in Il turco in Italia © ROH/Clive Barda, 2010 A number of Royal Opera artists have won prizes at the Opera Awards 2015 . The awards, now in their third year, celebrate excellence in opera and provide bursaries for emerging talent. The Conductor of the Year award was presented to Semyon Bychkov . Bychkov – whose most recent engagement at Covent Garden was conducting Strauss’s Die Frau ohne Schatten (which itself won the Richard Strauss Anniversary Production Award) – returns in December 2015 to lead performances of Tchaikovsky ’s Eugene Onegin . Soprano Aleksandra Kurzak won the Readers' Award. Kurzak is currently performing in Rossini's Il turco in Italia and will return to the Royal Opera House in Spring 2016 as Lucia in Katie Mitchell’s new production of Lucia di Lammermoor . Former Jette Parker Young Artist Justina Gringyte was awarded Best Young Singer. The mezzo-soprano, a member of the Programme from 2011-2013, returns to the Royal Opera House in March 2016 to perform the role of Flora in La traviata. The awards also highlight excellence behind the curtain with director Richard Jones winning Best Director and Es Devlin winning Best Design. Jones returns to Covent Garden in 2015/16 with a highly anticipated new production of Modest Musorgsky’s Boris Godonov alongside a revival of his acclaimed production of Il trittico, while Devlin's designs for Kasper Holten 's production of Don Giovanni can be seen this summer on BP Big Screens around the UK on 3 July. Other winners include Jonas Kaufmann (also receiving the Readers' Award), Anja Harteros (Female Singer) and the Welsh National Opera Chorus (Best Chorus). The Cardiff-based Company return to the Royal Opera House in July 2015 for the London premiere of Peter Pan . View the full list of Opera Awards 2015 winners
Antonio Pappano © Sim Canetty-Clarke/ROH 2011 Royal Opera Music Director Antonio Pappano made his Covent Garden debut in 1990. Now in his 12th year as Music Director, he has built up an impressive repertory with The Royal Opera, including the full The Ring Cycle , new productions of Les Troyens , Parsifal , Les Vêpres Siciliennes and Manon Lescaut , and two world premieres - Harrison Birtwistle ’s The Minotaur and Mark-Anthony Turnage ’s Anna Nicole . ‘This house is not a pushover – not the audience, or the orchestra or the chorus’, he says. ‘You really have to earn your spurs!’ And he certainly has. This Season alone he has conducted four operas, including Verdi ’s I due Foscari , starring Plácido Domingo , and a new production of Andrea Chénier , starring Jonas Kaufmann . ‘When Plácido walks into the room, he raises everybody elses's game, which is a fantastic gift', he says. 'By his sheer presence, everyone around him gets better.’ For the remainder of the 2014/15 Season, Pappano conducts new productions of Król Roger – his first collaboration with Director of Opera Kasper Holten – and Guillaume Tell . He will also conduct the first in a new series of annual concert performances , which are designed to celebrate his work with the Orchestra. ‘You have to stick your nose into all corners of the repertory to keep an eye on the orchestra and its development’, he says. ‘We have to jump from Puccini to Wagner to Mozart , from Rigoletto to Anna Nicole. I think I change with every piece, and orchestra has to as well - we start again each time, but with a backlog of experience and a theatrical trust. We can count on each other!’ The Music Director is renowned as one of the world’s best conductors of Puccini. ‘Puccini was a very fastidious, refined man; a snappy dresser who loved women and sports cars’, he says. ‘There’s natural sophistication in his music, even though he’s manipulating you from note one. La bohème , for example, can only be conducted by someone who has a deep knowledge of the opera and knows the ins and outs, because otherwise it’s treacherous.’ For more on the operatic language, commissioning new work and learning to conduct – and what he’s looking forward to in the 2015/16 Season – watch highlights from the In Conversation event. Antonio Pappano and the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House perform in concert on 4 May 2015. Tickets are still available. Król Roger runs from 1 to 19 May 2015. Tickets are still available. Guillaume Tell runs from 29 June to 17 July 2015. General Booking opens on 31 March 2015.
Autumn Season Deloitte Ignite 2015 Curated by ROH Learning and Participation 5–27 September 2015 Macbeth NEW (Linbury Studio Theatre) Luke Styles Dir: Ted Huffman Cond: Jeremy Bines Luke Styles, former Young Composer in Residence for Glyndebourne, presents a new one-act chamber opera based on Shakespeare’s violent tragedy. 9 September at 7.45pm Orpheus (Linbury Studio Theatre) Music Dir: Dominic Conway Dir: Alexander Scott Award-winning theatre company Little Bulb Theatre perform their acclaimed take on the Orpheus myth, bringing together opera, Hot Club jazz and French chanson in a highly original production. 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 September at 7.45pm 19 September at 6pm Orphée et Eurydice NEW Christoph Willibald Gluck Dir: Hofesh Shechter / John Fulljames Cond: John Eliot Gardiner Hofesh Shechter and John Fulljames co-direct a new production of Gluck’s opera. Cast: Orphée – Juan Diego Flórez (except 28 Sept) / Michele Angelini (28 Sept) Eurydice – Lucy Crowe Amour – Amanda Forsythe Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists 14 | 17 | 23 | 28 | 30 September at 7.30pm 20 September at 3pm; 26 September at 12.30pm 3 October at 7.30pm Le nozze di Figaro Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Dir: David McVicar Cond: Ivor Bolton (except 9, 14 Oct) / Christopher Willis (9,14 Oct) Revolution is in the air in David McVicar’s production of Mozart’s glorious comic opera. Cast: Figaro – Erwin Schrott Susanna – Anita Hartig (except 7, 14 Oct) / Sophie Bevan (7, 14 Oct) Count Almaviva – Stéphane Degout Countess Almaviva – Ellie Dehn Cherubino – Kate Lindsey Bartolo – Carlo Lepore Don Basilio – Krystian Adam Marcellina – Ann Murray (Sept) / Louise Winter (Oct) Don Curzio – Alasdair Elliot Antonio – Jeremy White Barbarina – Heather Engebretson (Sept) / Robyn Allegra Parton (Oct) Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House 15 | 18 | 21 | 25 | 29 September at 7pm 2 | 5* | 7 | 14 October at 7pm 9 October at 12 noon *Live cinema relay The Last Hotel NEW (Linbury Studio Theatre) Donnacha Dennehy Lib/Dir: Enda Walsh Cond: André de Ridder Composer Donnacha Dennehy and playwright Enda Walsh’s new opera is an intense psychological thriller, presented by Wide Open Opera and Landmark Productions. 9 | 10 | 13 | 14 | 16 October at 7.45pm 17 October at 6pm Ariadne auf Naxos Richard Strauss Dir: Christof Loy Cond: Lothar Koenigs Grand passions and comedy collide to wonderful effect in Christof Loy’s production of Strauss’s inventive opera. Cast: The Prima Donna/Ariadne – Karita Mattila The Tenor/Bacchus – Robert Dean Smith Zerbinetta – Jane Archibald The Composer – Ruxandra Donose Harlequin – Nikolay Borchev Music Master – Thomas Allen Dancing Master – Norbert Ernst Scaramuccio – Wynne Evans Brighella – Paul Schweinester Truffaldino – Jeremy White Naiad – Sofia Fomina Dryad – Karen Cargill Echo – Kiandra Howarth Wig Maker – Samuel Dale Johnson § Lackey – James Platt § Major Domo – Christoph Quest Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 10 | 13 | 16 October at 7.30pm Carmen Georges Bizet Dir: Francesca Zambello Cond: Bertrand de Billy (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4, 7, 10 Nov) / Alexander Joel (14, 16, 21, 26, 30 Nov) Francesca Zambello’s production of Bizet’s much-loved opera sets the stage alight with Spanish heat and gypsy passion. Cast: Carmen – Elena Maximova (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4 Nov) / Anita Rachvelishvili (7, 10, 14, 16, 21, 26, 30 Nov) Don José – Bryan Hymel (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4, 7, 10 Nov) / Jonas Kaufmann (14, 16 Nov) / Yonghoon Lee (21, 26, 30 Nov) Escamillo – Alexander Vinogradov (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4, 7, 10 Nov) / Gábor Bretz (14, 16, 21, 26, 30 Nov) Micaëla – Nicole Car (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4 Nov) / Sonya Yoncheva (7, 10, 14, 16 Nov) / Celine Byrne (21, 26, 30 Nov) Frasquita – Vlada Borovko § Mercédès – Michèle Losier (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4, 7, 10 Nov) / Rachel Kelly (14, 16, 21, 26, 30 Nov) Le Dancaïre – Grant Doyle (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4, 7, 10 Nov) / Adrian Clarke (14, 16, 21, 26, 30 Nov) Remendado – Timothy Robinson (19, 21, 24, 27, 30 Oct; 4, 7, 10 Nov) / Harry Nicoll (14, 16, 21, 26, 30 Nov) Zuniga – Nicolas Courjal Moralès – Samuel Dale Johnson § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 19 | 21 | 24 | 27 | 30 October at 7pm 4 | 7 | 10 | 14 | 16 | 26 | 30 November at 7pm 21 November at 12 noon Orpheus (Sam Wanamaker Playhouse) Luigi Rossi Dir: Keith Warner Cond: Christian Curnyn Orchestra of Early Opera Company Keith Warner directs a new production of Luigi Rossi’s 17th-century opera, in the unique candlelit space of the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse. 23 | 24 | 27 October at 7.30pm 28 | 30 October at 2.30pm 1 | 15 November at 7pm 4 | 6 | 9 | 12 November at 7.30pm 8 November at 2pm Morgen und Abend NEW | World Premiere Georg Friedrich Haas Lib: Jon Fosse Dir: Graham Vick Cond: Michael Boder Georg Friedrich Haas’s new commission for The Royal Opera, Morning and Evening, is based on a novel by Jon Fosse and directed by Graham Vick. Cast: Olai – Klaus Maria Brandauer Johannes – Christoph Pohl Signe/Midwife – Sarah Wegener Peter – Will Hartmann Erna – Helena Rasker Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House 13 | 17 | 21 | 25 November at 7.30pm 28 November at 7pm Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (Linbury Studio Theatre) Will Todd Lib: Maggie Gottlieb Dir: Martin Duncan Cond: Matthew Waldren Will Todd’s charming opera for children comes to the Royal Opera House for the first time, in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the book’s publication. 5 | 6 November at 6pm 7 November at 2pm and 6pm Lulu: A Murder Ballad The Tiger Lillies and Laura Caldow Dir: Mark Holthusen Cult cabaret trio the Tiger Lillies perform their brilliantly twisted song cycle inspired by Frank Wedekind’s fascinating heroine. 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 November at 7.45pm 28 November at 6pm Cavalleria rusticana / Pagliacci NEW Pietro Mascagni / Ruggero Leoncavallo Dir: Damiano Michieletto Cond: Antonio Pappano Damiano Michieletto directs new productions of Mascagni and Leoncavallo’s greatest operas. Cast: Cavalleria rusticana Santuzza – Eva-Maria Westbroek Turiddu – Aleksandrs Antonenko (except 13 Dec) / Yonghoon Lee (13 Dec) Mamma Lucia – Elena Zilio Alfio – Dimitri Platanias Lola – Martina Belli Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Pagliacci Canio – Aleksandrs Antonenko Tonio – Dimitri Platanias Nedda – Carmen Giannattasio (except 29 Dec) / Simona Mihai (29 Dec) Beppe – Benjamin Hulett Silvio – Dionysios Sourbis Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House 3 | 7 | 10* | 15 | 21 | 29 December at 7.30pm 13 December at 2pm 18 December at 12.30pm 1 January at 3pm *Live cinema relay The Firework-Maker's Daughter (Linbury Studio Theatre) David Bruce Lib: Glyn Maxwell Dir: John Fulljames Cond: Alice Farnham CHROMA This tale of courage, friendship and growing up is a theatrical event for all the family. David Bruce’s magical opera is based on a fairytale by Philip Pullman. 10 | 11 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 18 December at 7pm 12 | 19 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 30 December at 2pm and 7pm 28 | 29 | 31 December at 12.30pm and 5pm 1 January at 2pm 2 January at 2pm and 7pm Winter Season Eugene Onegin Pyotr Il’yich Tchaikovsky Dir: Kasper Holten Cond: Semyon Bychkov Tchaikovsky’s most famous opera is given an elegiac telling in Kasper Holten’s production. Cast: Eugene Onegin – Dmitri Hvorostovsky Tatyana – Nicole Car Lensky – Michael Fabiano Olga – Oksana Volkova Prince Gremin – Ferruccio Furlanetto (except 7 Jan) / Brindley Sheratt (7 Jan) Madame Larina – Diana Montague Filipyevna – Catherine Wyn-Rogers Monsieur Triquet – Jean-Paul Fouchécourt Captain – David Shipley § Zaretsky – James Platt § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 19 December at 7pm 22 | 30 December at 7.30pm 2 January at 7pm 4 | 7 January at 7.30pm Tosca Giacomo Puccini Dir: Jonathan Kent Cond: Emmanuel Villaume (except 2, 5 Feb) / Paul Wynne Griffiths (2, 5 Feb) Drama, passion and fabulous music – Tosca is one of the great evenings of opera. Jonathan Kent’s production is set against the turbulent backdrop of Rome in 1800. Cast: Floria Tosca – Angela Gheorghiu (9, 12, 15, 18, 21 Jan) / Amanda Echalaz (11, 25, 29 Jan; 2, 5 Feb) Mario Cavaradossi – Francesco Meli (9, 12, 15, 18, 21, 25, 29 Jan) / Riccardo Massi (11 Jan; 2, 5 Feb) Scarpia – Samuel Youn (9, 12, 15, 18, 21 Jan) / Roberto Frontali (11, 25, 29 Jan; 2, 5 Feb) Spoletta – Hubert Francis Cesare Angelotti – Yuriy Yurchuk § Sacristan – Donald Maxwell Sciarrone – David Shipley § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 9 | 11 | 12 | 15 | 18 | 21 | 25 | 29 January at 7.30pm 2 | 5 February at 7.30pm La traviata Giuseppe Verdi Dir: Richard Eyre Cond: Yves Abel (January, February, except 6 Feb) / Richard Hetherington (6 Feb) / Nicola Luisotti (Mar) Verdi’s tragic opera of a Parisian courtesan who sacrifices all for love is vividly told in Richard Eyre’s production. Cast: January, February Violetta Valéry – Venera Gimadieva Alfredo Germont – Saimir Pirgu Giorgio Germont – Luca Salsi Flora Bervoix – Andrea Hill Gastone de Letorières – Luis Gomes Annina – Sarah Pring Baron Douphol – Yuriy Yurchuk § Doctor Grenvil – James Platt § Marquis D’Obigny – Jeremy White Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House March Violetta Valéry – Maria Agresta (except 16, 19 Mar) / Nicole Cabell (16, 19 Mar) Alfredo Germont – Rolando Villazón (1, 4, 7 Mar) / TBC (9, 12, 16, 19 Mar) Giorgio Germont – Quinn Kelsey (except 16, 19 Mar) / TBC (16, 19 Mar) Flora Bervoix – Justina Gringyte Gastone de Letorières – Samuel Sakker § Annina – Gaynor Keeble Baron Douphol – Yuriy Yurchuk § Doctor Grenvil – James Platt § Marquis D’Obigny – Jeremy White Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist L’Étoile NEW Emmanuel Chabrier Dir: Mariame Clément Cond: Mark Elder French director Mariame Clément makes her Royal Opera debut with Chabrier’s fabulously frothy comic opera. Cast: King Ouf I – Christophe Mortagne Siroco – Simon Bailey Prince Hérisson de Porc-Epic – François Piolino Tapioca – Aimery Lefèvre Lazuli – Kate Lindsey Princesse Laola – Hélène Guilmette Aloès – Julie Boulianne Patacha – Samuel Sakker § Zalzal – Samuel Dale Johnson § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist Il trittico Giacomo Puccini Dir: Richard Jones Cond: Nicola Luisotti An evening of dramatic power and emotional range: Richard Jones presents a vibrant production of Puccini’s trio of operas. Cast: Il tabarro Michele – Lucio Gallo Giorgetta – Martina Serafin Luigi – Carl Tanner Tinca – Carlo Bosi Ballad seller – David Junghoon Kim § Frugola – Irina Mishura Lovers – Jennifer Davis §, Luis Gomes Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Suor Angelica Sister Angelica – Ermonela Jaho The Princess – Anna Larsson Abbess – Irina Mishura Monitress – Elena Zilio Mistress of the Novices – Elizabeth Sikora Nursing Sister – Jennifer Davis § Alms Sister – Emily Edmonds § Sister Genovieffa – Lauren Fagan § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Gianni Schicchi Gianni Schicchi – Lucio Gallo Lauretta – Susanna Hurrell Rinuccio – Paolo Fanale Zita – Elena Zilio Gherardo – Carlo Bosi Nella – Rebecca Evans Simone – Gwynne Howell Betto di Signa – Jeremy White Marco – David Kempster La Ciesca – Marie McLaughlin Maestro Spinelloccio – Matteo Peirone Ser Amantio di Nicolao – Tiziano Bracci Guccio – David Shipley § Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 25 | 29 February at 6.30pm 3 | 5 | 8 | 15 March at 6.30pm Antonio Pappano and the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Cond: Antonio Pappano Orchestra of the Royal Opera House Antonio Pappano conducts a captivating concert programme that celebrates the award-winning Orchestra of the Royal Opera House. 8 Feb at 7.30pm Spring Season Boris Godunov NEW Modest Musorgsky Dir: Richard Jones Cond: Antonio Pappano Richard Jones directs a new production of Musorgsky’s magnificent opera on the perils of power. Cast: Boris Godunov – Bryn Terfel Xenia – Vlada Borovko § Xenia’s Nurse – Sarah Pring Prince Shuisky – John Graham-Hall Andrei Shchelkalov – Kostas Smoriginas Pimen – Ain Anger Grigory Otrepiev – David Butt Philip Varlaam – John Tomlinson Missail – Harry Nicoll Hostess of the Inn – Rebecca de Pont Davies Simpleton – Andrew Tortise Frontier Guard – James Platt § Mitjucha – Adrian Clarke Police Office (aka Nikitich) – Jeremy White Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 14 | 18 | 21* | 24 | 26 | 30 March at 7.30pm 5 April at 7.30pm *Live cinema relay The Importance of Being Earnest (Barbican Theatre, London / Rose Theater, New York) Gerald Barry Dir: Ramin Gray Cond: Tim Murray (Barbican) / Ilan Volkov (New York) Gerald Barry’s operatic adaptation of Oscar Wilde’s classic play is a comic masterpiece. Barbican Theatre, London 29 | 30 March 1 | 2 | 3 April Rose Theater, New York 2 | 4 June Lucia di Lammermoor NEW Gaetano Donizetti Dir: Katie Mitchell Cond: Daniel Oren Katie Mitchell directs a new production of Donizetti’s tragic opera. Cast: Lucia – Diana Damrau (April) / Aleksandra Kurzak (May) Edgardo – Charles Castronovo (April) / Stephen Costello (May) Enrico – Ludovic Tézier (April) / Artur Ruciński (May) Arturo – Taylor Stayton (April) / David Junghoon Kim § (May) Raimondo – Kwangchul Youn (April) / Matthew Rose (May) Normanno – Peter Hoare Alisa – Rachael Lloyd Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 7 | 11 | 14 | 16 | 19 | 22 | 25* April at 7.30pm 11 | 16 | 19 May at 7.30pm 14 May at 7pm *Live cinema relay Tannhäuser Richard Wagner Dir: Tim Albery Cond: Hartmut Haenchen Tim Albery’s acclaimed production of Wagner’s early opera focusses on the conflicting allures of the sensual and the spiritual. Cast: Tannhäuser – Peter Seiffert Elisabeth – Emma Bell Venus – Sophie Koch Wolfram von Eschinbach – Christian Gerhaher Herrmann – Stephen Milling Biterolf – Michael Kraus Walther von der Vogelweide – Ed Lyon Heinrich der Schreiber – Samuel Sakker § Reinmar von Zweter – Jeremy White Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 26 | 29 April at 6pm 2 | 5 | 12 May at 6pm 8 | 15 May at 3pm Oepide NEW George Enescu Dir: Àlex Ollé Cond: Leo Hussain The Royal Opera presents La Fura dels Baus’s production of Enescu’s only opera, a rarely-seen masterpiece. Cast: Oedipe – Johan Reuter Tirésias – John Tomlinson Antigone – Sophie Bevan Mérope – Claudia Huckle Jocaste – Sarah Connolly The Sphynx – Marie-Nicole Lemieux Shepherd – Alan Oke High Priest – Nicolas Courjal Laïos – Hubert Francis Créon – Samuel Youn Phorbas – In-Sung Sim The Watcher – Stefan Kocan Thésée – Samuel Dale Johnson § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 23 | 26 | 30 May at 7.15pm 2 | 4 | 8 June at 7.15pm Pleasure NEW | WORLD PREMIERE (Lyric Hammersmith) Mark Simpson Lib: Melanie Challenger Dir: Tim Albery Set in a gay club, this world premiere from British rising star composer Mark Simpson is his operatic debut. 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 May Summer Season 4.48 Psychosis NEW | WORLD PREMIERE (Lyric Hammersmith) Philip Venables The world premiere of composer Philip Venables’s opera, based on Sarah Kane’s extraordinary play about her experience of depression. 20–28 May Nabucco Giuseppe Verdi Dir: Daniele Abbado Cond: Maurizio Benini (except 30 June) / Renato Balsadonna (30 June) Director Daniele Abbado explores themes of identity, exile and religion in this powerful staging of Verdi’s epic opera. Cast: Nabucco – Plácido Domingo (6, 9, 13, 23 June) / Dimitri Platanias (15, 18, 21, 25, 30 June) Zaccaria – John Relyea Abigaille – Liudmyla Monastyrska (except 21, 25 June) / Tatiana Melnychenko (21, 25 June) Ismaele – Leonardo Capalbo (6, 9, 15, 18, 23, 25 June) / Jean-François Borras (13, 21, 30 June) Fenena – Jamie Barton Anna – Vlada Borovko § Abdallo – Samuel Sakker § High Priest of Baal – David Shipley § Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 6 | 9 | 13 | 15 | 18 | 21 | 23 | 30 June at 7.30pm 25 June at 7pm Werther Jules Massenet Dir: Benoît Jacquot Cond: Antonio Pappano Benoît Jacquot’s production of Massenet’s tragic opera explores the conflict between duty and our most passionate desires. Cast: Werther – Vittorio Grigolo Charlotte – Joyce DiDonato Albert – David Bižić Sophie – Heather Engebretson Le Bailli – Jonathan Summers Johann – Yuriy Yurchuk § Schmidt – François Piolino Käthchen – Emily Edmonds § Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 19 June at 3pm 24 | 27* June at 7.15pm 3 July at 3pm 6 | 13 July at 7.15pm *Live cinema relay In Parenthesis NEW Iain Bell Lib: David Antrobus and Emma Jenkins (after David Jones) Dir: David Pountney Cond: Carlo Rizzi Welsh National Opera presents a new opera from acclaimed British composer Iain Bell, with a libretto by David Antrobus and Emma Jenkins that adapts David Jones’s epic poem set during the Battle of the Somme. Cast: Private John Ball – TBC Bard of Britannia/HQ Officer – Peter Coleman-Wright Bard of Germania/Alice the Barmaid/The Queen of the Woods – Alexandra Deshorties Lieutenant Jenkins – George Humphreys Lance Corporal Lewis – Marcus Farnsworth Sergeant Snell – Mark Le Brocq Dai Great Coat – Donald Maxwell The Marne Sergeant – Graham Clark 29 June at 7.30pm 1 July at 7.30pm Il trovatore NEW Giuseppe Verdi Dir: David Bösch Cond: Gianandrea Noseda Director David Bösch makes his UK debut with a new production of Verdi’s searing tragic opera. Cast: Leonora – Lianna Haroutounian (2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17 July) / Carmen Giannattasio (4, 7, 9, 12, 15 July) Manrico – Francesco Meli (2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17 July) / Gregory Kunde (4, 7, 9, 12, 15 July) Count di Luna – Željko Lučić (2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17 July) / Christopher Maltman (4, 7, 9, 12, 15 July) Azucena – Ekaterina Semenchuck (2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17 July) / Marina Prudenskaja (4, 7, 9, 12, 15 July) Ferrando – Maurizio Muraro Ines – Jennifer Davis § (2, 5, 8, 11, 14, 17 July) / Lauren Fagan § (4, 7, 9, 12, 15 July) Ruiz – David Junghoon Kim Royal Opera Chorus, Orchestra of the Royal Opera House § Jette Parker Young Artist 2 | 4 | 5 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 11 | 12 | 14 | 15 July at 7.15pm 17 July at 6.30pm Jette Parker Young Artists Summer Performance 17 July at 12.30pm
Luis Gomes as the Miller in El gato con botas © ROH / Catherine Ashmore 2013 ‘I used to repeatedly watch the Royal Opera House DVD of Thomas Allen in Don Giovanni, and never imagined I’d be on the same stage as him, but today, I was joking with him in rehearsals!’, says Jette Parker Young Artist Luis Gomes . The Portuguese tenor is currently in rehearsals for Rossini ’s farce Il turco in Italia. He plays the role of Albazar, alongside a star-studded cast that includes Aleksandra Kurzak , Ildebrando D'Arcangelo , Alessandro Corbelli and Thomas Allen . ‘Rehearsals are going very well. We have an incredible cast, who have done it before and know all the nuances of the piece, so it’s great fun to be on stage with them and learn from their experience,’ he explains. ‘Albazar is a fun man – he’s Zaida’s servant, but a little bit in love with her. My role is quite small and, on the surface, not very challenging. However, there are subtle dynamics to the music that are hard to bring alive while also doing the staging.’ Moshe Leiser and Patrice Caurier ’s production – bright, energetic and Fellini-esque – is set in the 1960s. Watch an interview in which the directors discuss their vision for the piece . ‘This production is one my favourites’, says Luis. ‘Patrice and Moshe have created a simple but clever staging – there are no big changes in the lighting or special effects, but the story comes alive very easily. It’s colourful, accessible and entertaining, and I can feel people having fun watching it. It reminds me a bit of Laurent Pelly ’s L’elisir d’amore , for which I covered the role of Nemorino.’ Since joining the Programme at the start of the 2013/14 Season, Luis has covered numerous principal roles; last Season, he stepped in at the last minute to perform as Chevalier de la Force on the opening night of Poulenc’s Dialogues des Carmélites . ‘It was about 8.30pm and I had just finished a Masterclass with Antonio Pappano in the Clore Studio, when I had a call from Company management saying I was needed for the second half of Dialogues des Carmélites. I thought it was a joke at first, but ended up going straight into costume and make-up and, before I knew it, I was on stage! ‘To walk on the main stage and perform a lead role in an institution like the Royal Opera House is a moment you wait for your whole life. Simon Rattle was in the orchestra pit, and 2,400 people were waiting in the auditorium. I didn't have much time to think about it until the few minutes before stepping on stage, which was probably a good thing! Fortunately, I had done the dress rehearsal, and I felt comfortable. It was a great experience.’ Alongside extensive coaching in music, language and stagecraft, covering roles is a key part of the Young Artists Programme. ‘It’s a very specific skill’, says Luis. ‘It requires you to be triple-prepared as you might come in half way through rehearsals, but you still have to deliver a first-class performance. For Young Artists, it's also often a debut role, which is very challenging. But watching other singers, and seeing how they tackle the role, is a very positive thing – not least because often they have the same problems as you!’ Luis Gomes in La scala di seta, Jette Parker Young Artists Meet the Young Artists Week © ROH/Mark Douet, 2014 Lauren Fagan and Luis Gomes in La Scala di Seta © ROH. Mark Douet, 2014 David Butt Philip as Pang, Grant Doyle as Ping and Luis Gomes as Pong in Turandot ©ROH/Tristram Kenton, 2014 Luis Gomes as Fernand and Nadezhda Karyazina as Léonor in the JPYA Summer Performance © ROH / Clive Barda 2014 Jette Parker Young Artist Luis Gomes performing in recital, accompanied by David Gowland © ROH / Lottie Butler 2014 David Butt Philip as Pang, Grant Doyle as Ping and Luis Gomes as Pong in Turandot ©ROH/Tristram Kenton, 2014 Luis Gomes and Lauren Fagan in La Scala di Seta © ROH. Mark Douet, 2014 Luis Gomes as the Miller and Rachel Kelly as the Cat in El gato con botas © ROH / Catherine Ashmore 2013 Luis Gomes and Lauren Fagan in La Scala di Seta © ROH. Mark Douet, 2014 Luis Gomes in La Favorite in the Jette Parker Young Artists Summer Performance, The Royal Opera © ROH/Clive Barda, 2014 Luis Gomes, Yuriy Yurchuk, Lauren Fagan and James Platt in La Scala di Seta © ROH. Mark Douet, 2014 Jette Parker Young Artist Luis Gomes performing in recital © ROH / Lottie Butler 2014 Working with top-class singers, whether covering a role or performing a smaller part on stage, is something Luis considers invaluable. ‘There is nothing like actually being on stage and working with the amazing people who come here. I've lost count of all of the fantastic people I've worked with’, he says. Since joining the programme, Luis has performed roles in Parsifal , Turandot , La traviata , Manon Lescaut and Rigoletto . ‘I’m next performing as Fenton in Falstaff , a role I was originally meant to be covering. It’s the main tenor role in the opera – and will be a debut for me – so it’s going to be a real highlight. It’s a great production that is fun, charming and captures the brilliance of the piece’, he says. ‘I’m most looking forward to working with Ambrogio Maestri . There’s not much interaction between our characters, but it will be a great experience being in rehearsals with him.’ Surprisingly, Luis, who grew up near Lisbon in Portugal, is the first of his family to show a passion for music. ‘Apart from my great grandfather, who used to play the accordion to friends, my family has no musical background. I started singing in school – nothing operatic, but pop music and school shows – and, when I was 11, someone told my father I should have lessons.’ Luis’s teacher introduced him to the world of opera, triggering a love of classical music that led him to enroll at the Lisbon Music Conservatory. Eleven years on from his first singing lessons, he moved to London to study at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama , subsequently joining the National Opera Studio . ‘There wasn't a moment when I knew I would pursue a career in opera – it was more of a gradual process – but I have always felt drawn to the acting as much as the singing. As I started to feel comfortable on stage, my confidence grew and things started happening’, he explains. ‘This is now something I love, and I can't see myself doing anything else. I think I’m slowly managing to convert my family to opera. My 15-year-old sister is now a huge fan of Jonas Kaufmann !’ The Jette Parker Young Artists Programme is supported by Oak Foundation. Find out more about the Programme . Il turco in Italia runs from 11 to 27 April 2015. Tickets are still available. The production is staged with generous support from Judith Portrait and The Friends of Covent Garden . Falstaff runs from 6 to 18 July 2015. Tickets are still available. The production is a co-production with Teatro alla Scala, Milan; Canadian Opera Company; Metropolitan Opera, New York; and Dutch National Opera, Amsterdam.
Oh, happy day! :) The Vienna State Opera announced the new 2015/2016 season today. Sort of breaking news, I must say. Angela Gheorghiu is scheduled to perform on April 9 and April 16 together with Jonas Kaufmann and Bryn Terfel. Remembering the best Tosca I've seen, the one in London a few years ago. So I'll see it again! There are two more performances with Angela as Tosca, on February 7 and 10, with Jorje de Leon (Mario) and Evgeny Nikitin (Scarpia). You can already apply for the tickets.
Great opera singers