China: The eighth round of the National Center for the Performing Arts’ version of Turandot

The eighth round of NCPA’s version of Turandot


The eighth round of NCPA’s version of Turandot kicks off 
Photo by Ling Feng / chncpa.org 

On October 17th, the eighth round of NCPA’s version of Turandot kicked off. The performances of this round will be recorded and released worldwide as a DVD, presenting the elegant singing from the Chinese singers and the distinct artistic charm of NCPA’s version of Turandot


The excellent performance of the China NCPA Orchestra and Chorus is highly commended 
Photo by Ling Feng / chncpa.org

Daniel Oren created a strong scene with the prince and princess, and the China NCPA Orchestra and Chorus lit up the evening

The excellent performance of the China NCPA Orchestra and Chorus was highly commended. Famous conductor Daniel Oren affirmed the two ensembles’ strength and talent and said, “It’s our first collaboration and their performance was exciting. Young as they are, the Chorus showed the strength no less than any European counterparts.” In the evening, the orderly coordinated Orchestra offered a performance of mellow tone and clear sounds. 


Elisabete Matos’s clear and touching voice enchants the audience 
Photo by Ling Feng / chncpa.org

Elisabete Matos’s clear and touching voice enchanted the audience and left an imprint with her intricate way of acting, bringing out on stage the warmer and milder princess designed by director Chen Xinyi. The Calaf by Vladimir Galouzine surprised the audience and his brilliant “Nessun dorma” climaxed the show. The self-sacrificing Liu by Yao Hong touched the audience into tears and Tian Haojiang’s expressive performance vividly showed the inner world of an expelled old king. In the evening of October 18th, the all-Chinese cast will take the stage with Sun Xiuwei and Dai Yuqiang singing Turandot and Calaf respectively, which will mark their second collaboration in this year after Un Ballo in Maschera and the four in NCPA’s Turandot


This round of performance will be recorded as a DVD and have an international release 
Photo by Ling Feng / chncpa.org

China’s pilot opera movie featuring excellent singing in a NCPA’s fine production will be released in the overseas market 

NCPA has filmed Nabucco and Un Ballo in Maschera in 2013, which made it the first art organization to film the stage performance of a Western opera classic in China. 

As the most staged NCPA-produced opera, this revival of Turandot will be recorded and released in the overseas market. The opera featuring a Chinese story is also NCPA’s first opera production. NCPA looks to promote china’s excellent singers and fine opera productions in the overseas market by filming opera productions like Turandot

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Premiere: Mar 21, 2008

The three-act Turandot is one of the greatest works of Puccini, the Italian great opera master, and it is also his last work in his life. In 1924, when Puccini composed Scene II, Act III, unfortunately he passed away, stopped his passionate pen and left to the world an uncompleted piece of work. During the past eighty years since Puccini’s death, completing Turandot has always been the artistic focus of the world’s attention.

The NCPA’s version of Turandot is the first original excellent work that the NCPA composed with all its strength. Puccini Festival Foundation, as the specially invited partner in the NCPA version of Puccini’s Turandot, has rendered full support from opera creation to rehearsal. Hao Weiya, the Chinese young composer, entrusted by National Centre for Performing Arts, becomes the third composer of the world and also the first Chinese artist to complete Puccini’s Turandot. The famous director Chen Xinyi will be the general director and the famous stage designer Gao Guangjian will be the chief vision director and stage designer. They will decode the coldhearted Princess from an entirely new perspective and jointly open up a new artistic vista. The ancient Chinese Princess’s story, completed by a Chinese for the first time, is a performing gala of the capital’s cultural and artistic circle and moreover becomes a unique exquisite works of art in the gallery of NCPA.

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Turandot depicts a love story of mystery. Turandot, though she is a most beautiful Chinese Princess, is coldhearted, and she stipulates that any prince seeking to marry her must answer three riddles – and if he fails, he will be sentenced to death. Three poor princes have unfortunately lost their lives. Calaf, the prince of Tartary who is in exile in China, smitten with the princess’s beauty, determines to win her as his bride and answers all the questions correctly. However, Princess Turandot refuses to accept defeat. Calaf generously offers Turandot a riddle of his own: if she can learn his name by dawn, he will forfeit his life. Princess Turandot captures the father of the prince and his maid Liù and extorts a confession from them by torture. Liù kills herself to keep the secret. Liù’s death gives coldhearted Turandot a great shock. At dawn, Turandot still has no idea of the prince’s name. Calaf makes Turandot forced to kiss him and melts her icy heart and finally tells her his real name. Yet Princess Turandot does not announce the prince’s real name, on the contrary, she announces to the public that she will marry the prince and his name is Love.

Ending aria by Hao Weiya
Conductor: Daniel Oren
Director: Chen Xinyi
Stage Design/Diretor: Gao Guangjian
Presenters: China NCPA Orchestra, NCPA Chorus 

Cast
Tuandot by Elisabete Matos/Sun Xiuwei
Calaf by Vladimir Galouzine/Dai Yuqiang/Walter Fraccaro
Liu by Yao Hong
Timur by Tian Haojiang

The NCPA’s version of Turandot is the first western opera the NCPA launched since its inauguration. Puccini Festival Foundation, as the specially invited partner in the NCPA version of Puccini’s Turandot, has rendered full support from opera creation to rehearsal. Hao Weiya, the Chinese young composer, entrusted by National Centre for Performing Arts, becomes the third composer of the world and also the first Chinese artist to complete Puccini’s Turandot. It’ll be the seventh time for NCPA to stage this masterpiece. In 2011, NCPA’s production of Turandot were staged as the opening performance for the 2011-2012 season of Korean National Opera in Seoul.

Daniel Oren
With a natural talent,Daniel Oren developed his own particular interest for the Opera by the great Leonard Bernstein who in 1968 chose him, just thirteen years old, as lead vocalist in his Chichester Psalms’s for the inauguration of the Israel Television; in reality it was the mother to start the young Daniel, still at an early age, a complete musical education by studying not only the piano and cello, but with singing and harmony. Maestro Oren then perfected his studies in Europe, devoting himself almost exclusively to conducting and taken part in 1975, winning, the prestigious competition ‘Herbert von Karajan’ for young conductors: from that moment the young artist began an international career.  

After debuting in the United States, his reputation also consolidated in Italy: in fact he became the stable conductor in Rome and, subsequently, at the Teatro Verdi in Trieste (where he was recently music director), at the San Carlo Theatre in Naples and at the Carlo Felice in Genoa. Even in recent years he has continued to successfully manage in the major Italian theaters (Florence, Parma, Turin, Venice), cultivating close relationships with the most influential European and American theaters, including the Metropolitan Opera in New York, Covent Garden in London, the Staatsoper in Vienna, the Colon in Buenos Aires, Tokyo Opera, the Opera Houses in Houston, Dallas, San Francisco and the Opera Bastille in Paris where he obtained a great success with Leo Nucci, Roberto Alagna and Angela Gheorgiu.

Next to his love for the Opera, with a repertoire that embraces the most important Italian repertoire, Oren joins the passion for symphonic music, which has enjoyed great success conducting major orchestras such as the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome (conducted for the first time in 1978), Maggio Musicale Fiorentino’s Orchestra, the Israel Philharmonic, the Berlin Philharmonic, and the radio orchestras of Monaco, Cologne, Stuttgart, Frankfurt and Berlin, among many others.

His participation in Verdi’s Nabucco inaugural season of the New Israeli Opera in December 1994 represented a particularly significant moment in his career: this musical event has managed to coincide his passion for the world of opera with the love for his homeland. Oren as a musician believes that the music is the best vehicle for peace, tolerance, and the only language that unites us all.

He’s Artist Director of Teatro Verdi in Salerno where he often conducts during the opera season. He’s also regular guest in Paris, at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden as well as in Tel Aviv,Verona, Florence, Madrid, Cologne and Barcelona. \

   Turandot  Calaf
 Oct. 17  Elisabete Matos  Vladimir Galouzine
 Oct. 18  Sun Xiuwei  Dai Yuqiang  Oct. 19  Elisabete Matos  Walter Fraccaro  Oct. 20  Sun Xiuwei  Dai Yuqiang
Chen Xinyi Director

Chen Xinyi is a fruitful director who has been actively engaged in the creation of theatrical drama for decades. She has created more than 80 plays; in addition to stage play, opera and Peking Opera, she is found as well involved in musical drama, children’s play and local dramas. The works directed by Chen have won Cao Yu Drama Literature Award, and Splendor Award (for professional theatrical artworks) (Ministry of Culture) even for 12 times (of which four works were given grand prizes).

As a female director, she imparts her works a subtle and understated mood as well as the sensational impact and flavor. 

Gao Guangjian Stage Design/Director
He is a stage supervisor of NCPA and a national level-I stage designer, an outstanding expert of the Ministry of Culture. He has acted as stage designer in more than 100 stage plays and large-scale performances. He has won “Wenhua Award for Stage Art Design” conferred by the Ministry of Culture for several times. Main works: operas Turandot, La Traviata, Rigoletto, Plain, dance dramas Dream of Dunhuang, The Old Summer Palace, Marco Polo, etc. 

Elisabete Matos as Turandot
Elisabete Matos was born in Braga, Portugal, where she studied singing and violin at the local conservatory. Later, she moved to Madrid, Spain, where she finished her studies at the Madrid School of Singing with a scholarship from the Gulbenkian Foundation.  

She was awarded several prizes at singing competitions, including second place at the Belvedere Vienna Singing Competition. 

Recently, she has had her debut at Viena as Abigaille (Nabucco) and at Los Angeles Opera as Senta, conducted by Conlon, and after her huge success as Minnie (Fanciulla del West) at Metropolitan Opera House, she has returned on November for Nabucco‘s Abigaille and will be back on December 2013 for Tosca. Next engagements also include Rienzi (Irene) at Liceu de Barcelona, Turandot at Chile, Berlin and Capitole de Toulouse and her debut as Salome at Palma de Mallorca. 

Ms. Matos is also a frequent guest of various concert halls. Her concert repertory goes from Bach to contemporary music, including lieder and symphony. She was recently invited to perform Beethoven’s 9th Symphony in Cagliari (conducted by Lorin Maazel), Manuel de Falla’s El Sombrero de Tres Picos with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Daniel Baremboim. 

Her recordings include von Suppé’s Requiem with the Gulbenkian Foundation Chorus and Orchestra conducted by Michel Corboz (Virgin Classics), as well as the title role in La Dolores for Decca (with Placido Domingo), for which she was awarded a Grammy in 2000.

Sun Xiuwei as Turandot
Sun Xiuwei was born and grew up in Liao Ning, China. On leaving school, she moved to Shanghai to study at the Conservatory under her first singing teacher, Professor Gao Zhilan. She then moved to Italy to continue her training under Rita Orlandi Malaspina, probably the last great soprano of Verdi music. As well as improving her general command of Italian and its pronunciation, of key importance for voice emission, Sun Xiuwei widened her repertoire to include Bel Canto.

Sun Xiuwei entered several international vocal music contests, winning six of them: Varallo Val Sesia, Parma, Piacenza, Adria, G. Simionato, Pavia and Busseto.

In 1994, her Italian début at the G. Verdi Theatre, Trieste in the role of Norma was acclaimed by public and critics alike. She then appeared in Madama Butterfly as Cio Cio San, a role that was to bring her accolades around the world: the Arena of Verona , the Opéra de Nice, Opern des Stadt Bonn, Deutsche Opern Berlin, Bilbao, Genoa, Oslo, Aachen, Palermo, Helsinky, Rome, Santiago of Chile, Detroit, Philadelphia, Trieste, Washington, Toronto, Maiorca, Pacific Opera California, Bologna, Karlsruhe, Los Angeles, Torre del Lago, Trieste, Macao and, in 2006, Washington once more to celebrate her 170th performance.

In 2000, a rising opera star in Italy, Sun Xiuwei was invited to sing at the Paul VI Hall in the Vatican before Pope John Paul II. She has also been a regular feature of the Puccini Festival at Torre del Lago, a must for a natural Puccini soprano like herself, singing in Madama Butterfly and as Liù, a role she was to perform in many other theatres, including Washington where she would later return to sing the leading role in Turandot. While performing Butterfly around the world, Sun Xiuwei worked on extending her repertoire to include other operas like Andrea Chenier, Il Corsaro, Attila, Nozze Istriane, Il Trovatore and La Traviata, performing in Tokyo, the Arena d’Avenches and Budapest. Hong Kong saw her triumphant début in the role of Lady Macbeth in Verdi’s Macbeth. Subsequently, once more at the Arena d’Avenches, Sun Xiuwei was widely acclaimed for her Abigaille in Nabucco with Renato Bruson, Leo Nucci and Juan Pons. 

Vladimir Galouzine as Calaf
Vladimir Galouzine is indisputably one of the world’s leading dramatic tenors, known for his unrivaled stentorious voice and extremely vivid characterizations of some of the most demanding roles.

He started his career as a member of the Mariinsky Theater in Saint Petersburg, Russia, performing a myriad of leading roles from both the Russian and the Italian repertoire, including, amongst others: the title roles in Verdi’s Otello and Don Carlo and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Sadko, Radames in Verdi’s Aida, Calaf in Puccini’s Turandot, Des Grieux in Puccini’s Manon Lescaut, Cavaradossi in Puccini’s Tosca, Alexey in Prokofiev’s The Gamblers, Sergey in Shostakovich’s Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, Khovansky in Mussorgsky’s Khovanschina, Canio in Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci; and the role of which he is widely considered the world’s most outstanding performer: Hermann in Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades.

He is in much demand internationally, performing regularly during the last two decades as a guest of most of the world’s most prominent opera houses, concert halls and festivals, including: New York’s Metropolitan Opera, Chicago’s Lyric Opera, the San Francisco Opera, the Houston Grand Opera and the Los Angeles Opera in the United States; London’s Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, in the United Kingdom; Milan’s Teatro alla Scala; Venice’s La Fenice, the Teatro Verdi in Trieste, the Teatro Comunale in Bologna as well as Florenc’s Teatro Comunale; the Vienna State Opera in Austria; the Opéra National (Bastille) and Théatre de Chatelet, both in Paris, as well as Toulouse’s Théatre de Capitole and the Marseille Opera in France; Madrid’s Teatro Real and Barcelona’s Grand Teatre del Liceu in Spain; both the Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg and the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, Russia; Amsterdam’s Nederlandse Opera in The Netherlands; the Deutsche Oper Berlin, the Cologne Opera and the Baden-Baden Festspielhaus in Germany; the New National Theater in Tokyo, Japan; the New Israeli Opera; and the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires, Argentina. In addition, he has performed at the Salzburg, Bregenz and Edinburgh Festivals and Washington’s Kennedy Center; London’s Royal Albert Hall; the Chorégies d’Orange and the Arena di Verona.

Vladimir Galouzine has collaborated with many of the world’s most important conductors including Valery Gergiev, Carlo Rizzi, James Conlon, Dennis Russell Davies, Marcello Viotti, and stage directors such as Franco Zeffirelli, Graham Vick, August Everding, Giancarlo Del Monaco and Elijah Moshinsky.  

 

Dai Yuqiang as Calaf
Dai Yuqiang is a remarkable tenor of China instructed by a number of celebrated musicians, such as Yan Keting, Han Dezhang, Ma Qiuhua, Jin Tielin and Wu Qihui. He works at the Opera Troupe of the General Political Department of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army since he entered in 1990.

His opera leading appearances include Il Trovatore, Rigoletto, La Boheme, Carmen, Turandot, one-act opera Mid-autumn at Vast Sandy Land, a full-length musical White Reed Flowers and Red Kapok Flowers. Judging from his outstanding contribution to opera, the Ministry of Culture of China granted him the ‘Cultural Performance Award’. Mr. Dai’s performance in various activities won tons of rave reviews from experts, scholars and audience and received many honor titles and rewards from the General Political Department of PLA.

The world-famous tenor and maestro Pavarotti pleasantly took Mr. Dai as his first student from Asia after heard his singing; and an opera fan from Japan appraised him as ‘the Pride of Chinese Opera’. Mr. Dai, along with Maria Guleghina and Samuel Ramey, has collaborated in Tosca at Royal Opera House, Convent Garden, being showered with praise and hailed by local media as ‘a dazzling star on the stage.’ 

 

Walter Fraccaro as Calaf
Walter Fraccaro is regularly invited to perform on the world’s most prestigious stages, including: Teatro alla Scala in Milan;  Wiener Staatsoper;  the Metropolitan Opera in New York; Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich;  Deutsche Oper Berlin;  Teatro Real in Madrid; San Francisco Opera; Hamburgische Staatsoper; Opernhaus Zürich; Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona;  Arena di Verona; Maggio Musicale in Florence; Teatro La Fenice in Venice; Teatro San Carlo in Naples; Opera in Rome; Teatro Massimo in Palermo; and Teatro Carlo Felice in Genoa.  

His vast repertory includes, among many others: Aida (Radames); Stiffelio (title role); Un Ballo in Maschera (Riccardo); Nabucco (Ismaele); Attila (Foresto); Simon Boccanegra (Gabriele); Macbeth (Macduff); La Forza del Destino (Alvaro); Don Carlo (title role); Luisa Miller (Rodolfo); Il Trovatore (Manrico); La Bohème (Rodolfo); Tosca (Cavaradossi); Madama Butterfly (Pinkerton); Mefistofele (Faust); Carmen (Don José); La Gioconda (Enzo); Turandot (Calaf); Manon Lescaut (Renato Des Grieux); Andrea Chenier (title role); La Fanciulla del West (Dick Johnson); and Cavalleria Rusticana (Turiddu). 

In 2013 he has already performed Turandot at Met in New York and in Seoul, Madama Butterfly in Nice and Athens, Aida in San Diego, Otello in Como, Il trovatore in Belem (Brazil) and Mexico City.  

His recent and future plans include Manon Lescaut in Siviglia, Turandot in Turin, Cavalleria Rusticana and Pagliacci in Tokyo.  

img alt=”” src=”http://www.chncpa.org/module/performancemanager/manager/images/artist/1378451747909.jpg” width=”158″ name=”perImg” />

Yao Hong as Liu
Yao Hong, China’s famous soprano, is a first-grade national actress. Among her numerous awards, she has won the First Prize at the ‘Concord’ International Opera Competition in Marseilles, the First Prize at the First National Vocal contest organized by the Ministry of Culture, the Sixth Wenhua Award by the Ministry of Culture, and the ‘Plum Blossom Award’ by Chinese Dramatists Association. In 2001, she performed on stage with the world’s three major tenors at the Meridian Gate, Forbidden City. In 2005, she played the role of ‘Liu’ in Puccini’s opera Turandot directed by China’s famous director Zhang Yimo successively in Paris and Munich, for which, her performance has been widely praised by international media and critics. 

 

Tian Haojiang as Timur
Tian Haojiang is a Chinese opera performing artist working with the Metropolitan Opera House for 19 consecutive years and has cooperated with over 30 significant opera houses such as Berlin State Opera and Washington Opera House. He has performed more than 40 operas (about 1,300 sessions) including 11 operas presented with world-renowned tenors Pavarotti and Domingo. In 2001, Mr. Tian presented Turandot at the Met, Guo Wenjing’s Poet Li Bai in Hong Kong, multi-media opera Turandot directed by Zhang Yimou in Taiwan, China, as well as starred in the modern opera Matteo Ricci in Hong Kong and the premiere of The Soul of a Painter in Taiwan, China. In 2009, the National Public Radio produced a special TV program named From Mao to the Met wih Tian Hao Jiang. Furthermore, Tian’s English biography My Wild Ride from Mao to the Met that included into the book series of the Lincoln Centre for the Performing Centre was published in 2008.

 

Liu Songhu as Ping
Liu Songhu, a tenor and an associate professor of the Academy of Opera, Peking University, had been the resident solo of Nurnberg State Opera and visiting lecturer of Nurnberg Academy of Music. So far, he has starred in over 500 operas, with The Fall of The House of Usher been elected as the annual ‘Best Opera’ by the German Ministry of Culture. In addition, he won a series of awards at German ‘New Voice’ International Voice Competition, Toulouse International Voice Competition and other competitions. In 2007, he, as the first Chinese singer, won the top award at the Germany ‘La Voce’ International Artistic Songs Competition.

Li Xiang as Pang
Li Xiang, a young tenor of Central Opera House, was graduated from the Central Conservatory of Music and entered the Master Class in Beijing lectured by American soprano Cheryl Studer and Professor Robert White from the Juilliard School. From 2002 to 2004, he was invited for three times by world-renown conductor Seiji Ozawa to learn at the Seiji Ozawa Ongaku-Juku Academy and performed operas such as Madam Butterfly, Die Fledermaus and La Boheme. In Jan. 2008, he traveled to America and impersonated Wu Hou in Farewell to Concubine. He also starred many versions of Turandot and played leading roles in quite a few operas such as A Woman’s Heart, The Weddning of Figaro and Carmen

 

Chen Yong as Peng
Chen Yong won Bel Canto Gold Award of Professional Group of the 10th National TV Contest of Young Singers and 2010 national audience favorite singer award ‘Gold Award’ and attended Ferraro International Vocal Maestro Class, Shanghai International Opera Maestro Class and Italia International Opera Maestro Class. Additionally, he won French Government Scholarship for two consecutive times and studied at Opera House de Paris and Opera/Theatre de Saint-Etienne. In 2005, Chen won Italian Government Scholarship and studied at Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi di Milano and Accademia lirica Italiana. It is worth mentioning that Chen served as member of judging panel of the 12th CCTV young singers contest.  

Chen also performed in or held solo concerts in countries such as Japan, Hong Kong, Italia, Austria and Malaysia around the world. In 2008, he released his solo album in World Chinese Singer Serials. Additionally, Chen was invited to perform in Turandot directed by Zhang Yimou at Bird’s Nest and successfully played Li Wenguang in Female Teacher in Village and Zhao Wu in The Orphan of Chao at NCPA as well as stared Sino-French opera Les Contes d`Hoffmann and opera Les Pêcheurs de Perles.  

 

Yang Yi as Herald
Graduated from the Vocal Department of the Central Conservatory of Music, Yang Yi has starred in quite a few operas such as Marco Polo, Turandot, Carmen and Rigoletto. In 2001, he was elected by the Ministry of Culture to go in for the International Voice Competition of Bilbao, Spain and won the superior award. Currently, he is a solo of Berlin State Opera (since 2002) and studies German artistic songs at Karlsruhe National Music Academy and takes lessons from vocal masters such as Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau and Schwarzkopf. In 2003, he won the top prize at the Hugo Wolf International Artistic Songs Competition. 

 

Liu Naiqi as Emperor
As a tenor actor from China National Symphony Orchestra Chorus, Liu starred in the operas such as Turandot, Gianni Schicchi, Le Nozze di Figaro, Le Barbier de Séville, Salome, Tosca, Un Ballo in Maschera and Il Trovatore. It is worth mentioning that Liu was in the spotlight for he put in an excellent performance in Gianni Schicchi at NCPA. As the Music Weekly comments: ‘Young tenor actor Liu Naiqi who played Gerardo stands out from others and his beautiful voice bears comparison with the great Italian tenor Stefano at his early life.’ 

In 2002, Liu won golden prize in National Adolescent Talent Contest and other prizes in national contests such as CCTV young singers contest and Golden Bell Awards. 

 

NCPA Chorus
NCPA Chorus was established on December 8, 2009, whose members were carefully selected from famous music schools in and out of China. Now the Chorus has Wu Lingfen as the conductor, with many artists well-known in China and abroad giving instructions. Affiliated to NCPA, the highest palace of performing arts in China, the Chorus adheres to NCPA’s guiding principles of ‘for the people, for the arts, and for the world’. The Chorus mainly stages operas and concerts, and also takes part in kinds of cultural communication events.The Chorus presented its debut performance in NCPA Opera Festival 2010, and has taken part in and gained critical acclaim from the performances of NCPA’s Xi Shi, Carmen, La Traviata, L’elisir d’amore, Turandot, A Village Teacher, Tosca, Die Fledermaus, and The Chinese Orphan. As NCPA’s resident chorus, it took part in Turandot (NCPA version) on the tour to Seoul Arts Center in January 2011 and gained high praise. 

The Chorus has offered a great number of performances including Road to Revive, To the Music (debut), Roam About the Classics, To Our Motherland– NCPA Chorus Concert for the Army Day, Arias of Love, Beethoven’s ninth symphony, and Mahler’s second symphony.  

The Chorus has cooperated with top artists like directors  Francesca Zambello and Giancarlo del Monaco; conductors Lorin Maazel, Lu Jia, and Li Xincao; singers Inva Mula, Juan Pons,Brandon Jovanovich, Dai Yuqiang, Warren Mok, Zhang Yalun, Zhang Liping, Sun Xiuwei, and Liang Ning. Its over-one-hundred performances have taken an active role in the further development of NCPA. 

 

Turandot depicts a love story of mystery. Turandot, though she is a most beautiful Chinese Princess, is coldhearted, and she stipulates that any prince seeking to marry her must answer three riddles – and if he fails, he will be sentenced to death. Three poor princes have unfortunately lost their lives. Calaf, the prince of Tartary who is in exile in China, smitten with the princess’s beauty, determines to win her as his bride and answers all the questions correctly. However, Princess Turandot refuses to accept defeat. Calaf generously offers Turandot a riddle of his own: if she can learn his name by dawn, he will forfeit his life. Princess Turandot captures the father of the prince and his maid Liù and extorts a confession from them by torture. Liù kills herself to keep the secret. Liù’s death gives coldhearted Turandot a great shock. At dawn, Turandot still has no idea of the prince’s name. Calaf makes Turandot forced to kiss him and melts her icy heart and finally tells her his real name. Yet Princess Turandot does not announce the prince’s real name, on the contrary, she announces to the public that she will marry the prince and his name is Love.

NCPA Orchestra
China NCPA Orchestra is the resident orchestra of the National Centre for the Performing Arts of China (NCPA), balancing a busy and distinguished performance schedule with a reputation as one of China’s most adventurous and dynamic orchestras. Established in March 2010, the orchestra is composed of distinguished musicians from around the world, performing more than a dozen operas, ballets and regular symphonic seasons every year. Maestro Lu Jia took up the post of Principal Conductor in February 2011, succeeding Chen Zuohuang, the current Laureate Conductor, NCPA’ Music Artistic Director and also one of the founders of the orchestra.The NCPA Orchestra demonstrates an abiding commitment to high levels of artistic excellence and prides itself on its long-term collaborations with the finest musicians of our day. Artists associated with the orchestra in the past two years include Lorin Maazel, Christoph Eschenbach, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Gunter Herbig, Gilbert Varga, Lang Lang, Stephen Kovacevich, Leo Nucci, Wang Yuja and Han-Na Chang. Maestro Lorin Maazel praised the orchestra as “a hard-working excellence with great passion” after a series of concerts and the NCPA’s new La Traviata in June 2010.    

In its first season of 2011, China NCPA Orchestra gained critical acclaim for its performances in NCPA’ new productions of Tosca (Directed by Giancarlo Del Monaco), Il Barbiere di Siviglia (co-produced with Castleton Festival), Die Fledermaus, and a new composed opera The Chinese Orphan. Apart from that, the orchestra was also deeply involved in NCPA’ 2011 Gustav Mahler Project. Under the batons of maestros including Christoph Eschenbach, Yoel Levi, Jun Maerkl and Chen Zuohuang, the orchestra completed Mahler’s Symphonies No. 1, 2, 3, 8 and 10.  

In the season of 2012, China NCPA Orchestra won a highly successful acclaim for two NCPA’s new productions: Der Fliegende Hollander and Lohengrin, both Wagner’s operas were Chinese premiere. It continually collaborates with prominent musicians around the world for concert programs, including Maestro Vladimir Ashkenazy, Yan Pascal Tortelier and the legendary pianist Rudolf Buchbinder.  

In addition to its extensive domestic performances, the NCPA Orchestra also received a widespread international praise in 2012. The orchestra was invited by Kissingen Summer Music Festival and Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival in July 2012, and kicked off his first German tour in Nürnberg, Hamburg and Berlin under the baton of Christoph Eschenbach and Chen Zuohuang. This was followed by a successful concert at the Sydney Opera House with Maestro Chen Zuohuang in November. 

In the season of 2013, the NCPA orchestra presents colorful programs on the commemoration of Wagner, Verdi and Britten, highlighting the Ring without words with 12 principals from Berlin Philharmonic under the baton of Lorin Maazel. NCPA’s new opera productions that the orchestra is involved include Les Contes d’Hoffmann, Otello and Nabucco, which features her second successful collaboration with Placido Domingo.    

The NCPA orchestra aims to build up a world-class orchestra with operation and management conforming to global practices while incorporating Chinese characteristics. Devoted to educational and outreach activities, the Orchestra also has presented a series of Weekend Matinee Concerts since its establishment. With specially selected repertoire, performances of high quality and extremely low ticket prices, these concerts have won great acclaim from both audience and critics. The orchestra is now embarking on a similar path with the complete Beethoven symphonies with Maestro Lu Jia

 
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