Trovatore inaugurates the Rome Opera summer season followed by Madama Butterfly and La bohème
Programme of dance features Swan Lake and Roberto Bolle
Twenty-six evenings of opera, ballet and concerts with the Verdi Requiem conducted by maestro Chung and Capossela’s Bestiario d’Amore with orchestra.
The summer season of Rome’s Teatro dell’Opera will take place at the Circo Massimo from 15 June to 6 August 2021. This vast space was found to be a suitable solution last year for presenting events during a pandemic instead of the smaller Caracalla Baths which is the usual location for the summer festival.
There will be a new production of Verdi’s Il trovatore conducted by Daniele Gatti and directed by Lorenzo Mariani, the debut of maestro Myung-Whun Chung conducting of the Rome Opera House Orchestra with Verdi’s Messa da Requiem, as well as Puccini’s Madama Butterfly and La bohème, two productions redesigned for the Circo Massimo stage. Dance is represented with Swan Lake and evenings with Roberto Bolle and Friends, while Vinicio Capossela will perform with the Maderna Orchestra.
Surprisingly the hastily put together 2020 season ended up a success with 23 thousand spectators and box-office takings of one million euros. This year, in full compliance with anti-Covid-19 measures, the Circo Massimo will be able to accommodate one thousand spectators.
Rome Opera’s Intendant Carlo Fuortes said,
We will try to bring beauty to Romans and our city’s tourists and also bring the joy of reliving culture together at last. Performing opera and ballet in such an extraordinary archaeological space makes it possible to multiply the pleasure of music and art, making these evenings unique and unforgettable experiences.
Il trovatore, under the baton of Daniele Gatti, will be presented with bold black and white designs. Fabio Sartori will alternate with Piero Pretti as Manrico, Roberta Mantegna is Leonora, Clémentine Margaine plays Azucena, Christopher Maltman and Giovanni Meoni will alternate as the Conte di Luna, and Marco Spotti will be Ferrando. The production opens on Tuesday 15 June and returns on Saturday 19, Thursday 24, Sunday 27 June, Sunday 4 and Tuesday 6 July.
Swan Lake is given in a version by Benjamin Pech with designs by Aldo Buti and lighting by Vinicio Cheli. Andriy Yurkevych will conduct the theatre’s orchestra. The theatre’s étoiles, Alessandra Amato and Rebecca Bianchi, and principal dancers Susanna Salvi and Claudio Cocino, will join international guests: Dutch Nationale Ballet’s Maia Makhateli, the Bolshoi’s Semyon Chudin and Paris Opéra’s Germain Louvet. Following the premiere on Tuesday 22 June, five performances will be given on Friday 25, Saturday 26, Wednesday 30 June, Thursday 1 and Friday 2 July.
Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, in a production by Àlex Ollé of the Spanish theatre company La Fura dels Baus, will be conducted by Donato Renzetti. In this version, the young geisha is an ordinary girl, no more naive or romantic than many others in the world, and Pinkerton a rich businessman.
Corinne Winters will be making her debut in Rome as Cio-Cio-San, Adriana Di Paola will play Suzuki, Saimir Pirgu is Pinkerton, alternating with Angelo Villari, and Andrzej Filończyk will be Sharpless. After the first performance on Friday 16 July, four performances are planned: Tuesday 20, Thursday 29, Saturday 31 July and Friday 6 August.
On Saturday 24 July, Myung-Whun Chung will take to the podium for the Verdi Requiem. The singers are soprano Krassimira Stoyanova, mezzo-soprano Daniela Barcellona, tenor Saimir Pirgu and bass Michele Pertusi.
The season continues with La bohème, which was staged at the Terme di Caracalla in 2014 in a production by Davide Livermore, who also designed the sets, costumes and lighting. In this production, thanks to games of technology, video mapping and projections, famous works of art of French impressionism, from Renoir to Monet, surround the protagonists. Jordi Bernàcer conducts. Vittoria Yeo is Mimì, Piero Pretti plays Rodolfo, Luca Micheletti is Marcello, Simone Del Savio is Schaunard, Andrea Mastroni is Colline, and Sara Blanch plays Musetta. After the premiere on Friday 30 July, the August performances will be on Sunday 1, Tuesday 3 and Thursday 5.
On Wednesday 23 June, singer-songwriter, poet and novelist Vinicio Capossela will perform with the Maderna Orchestra conducted by maestro Stefano Nanni. His Bestiario d’amore project is based on the songs contained in the album inspired by the work of medieval philosopher and trouvère Richart de Fornival’s work.
Roberto Bolle will bring his gala Roberto Bolle and Friends to the Circo Massimo for the first time from 13 to 15 July, bringing together some of the dance world’s most famous names. Bolle has been bringing his friends to Rome since 2011 for always sold-out performances.
All performances will start at 9 pm.
Tickets for the 2021 summer season at the Circo Massimo will go on sale from Wednesday 19 May at 10 am on the Rome Opera House website: operaroma.it
Graham Spicer is a writer, director and photographer in Milan, blogging (under the name ‘Gramilano’) about dance, opera, music and photography for people “who are a bit like me and like some of the things I like”. He was a regular columnist for Opera Now magazine and wrote for the BBC until transferring to Italy.
His scribblings have appeared in various publications from Woman’s Weekly to Gay Times, and he wrote the ‘Danza in Italia’ column for Dancing Times magazine.