The new ballet season of the Teatro dell'Opera in Roma has been announced by the company's director, Eleonora Abbagnato.
Don Quixote by Laurent Hilaire
Rome Opera Ballet opens its season with Don Quixote with Laurent Hilaire's choreography, a production that inaugurated the 2017-2018 season. The ballet has costumes by Francesco Zito, “a guarantee of elegance and charm”. Guest artists are Isabella Boylston and Daniel Camargo, Iana Salenko and Osiel Gouneo, and David Garforth conducts. Performances run from 18 December 2022 to 31 December.
La Bayadère with Olga Smirnova and Jacopo Tissi
La Bayadère runs from 24 February to 2 March in a new version by Benjamin Pech based on Marius Petipa. Pech, after creating a successful Swan Lake for the Rome Opera, he now approaches another cornerstone of the classical repertoire with scenes and lights by Ignasi Monreal and Vinicio Cheli. Olga Smirnova will make her debut with the company, alternating with Maia Makhateli in the role of Nikija, with Solor played by Jacopo Tissi and Victor Caixeta. Kevin Rhodes conducts.
La Fille mal gardée in Ashton's version
La Fille mal gardée was first performed at Teatro Costanzi, Rome Opera's theatre, in 1791, just two years after the world premiere in 1789 at the Gran Théâtre in Bordeaux. The Royal Opera House presented Frederick Ashton's version in 1960, inspired by his love for the Suffolk countryside. The music, adapted by John Lanchbery, is based on Ferdinand Hérold's original score. Ashton's virtuosic choreography tells the story of Lise and her lover Colas, which will be played by Paris Opera Ballet étoile Léonore Baulac together with Daniil Simkin. Philip Ellis makes his debut conducting for the company.
A special “Bolero” in the Contemporary Choreographers Evening
From 19 to 24 September the company presents a triple bill with three very different works that are entering the repertoire of the theatre. The evening opens with Within the Golden Hour, created by Christopher Wheeldon in 2008 for the San Francisco Ballet to the original score for strings by Ezio Bosso, together with music by Antonio Vivaldi. Goyo Montero's Chacona follows this with music by Bach, a work created in 2017 for the Ballet Nacional de Sodre in Montevideo. The evening ends with Krzysztof Pastor's Bolero, created in 2012 to the Ravel score. In his version, Pastor uses a man and a woman as the main couple with a corps de ballet that incorporates and releases them.
Bigonzetti rethinks Rossini Cards
The ballet season ends with a new version of Rossini Cards, a work that Mauro Bigonzetti conceived in 2004, an abstract creation. To Rossini's music, the Roman choreographer creates scenes of parallel lives with the company's étoiles Alessandra Amato, Rebecca Bianchi, Susanna Salvi and Alessio Rezza and principal dancers Claudio Cocino and Michele Satriano. Anna Biagiotti designs the costumes of this new version. On the podium is the young conductor Louis Lohraseb for the eight performances between 27 October to 4 November.
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.