NCPA´s Production of Verdi´s La Traviata with Andrea Battistoni

The National Centre for the Performing Arts of Beijing Presents:

traviataChina

NCPA´s Production of Verdi´s La Traviata

NCPA Opera Festival 2014

Venue:Beijing Opera House
Dates:Apr. 10, 2014-Apr. 12, 2014

Duration:approximate 180 mins
intermission included

La Traviata is the last part of ‘Popular Trilogy’ by Verdi, the Italian romanticist composing master. It’s also one of the best-selling classical works in the world opera history. The original version of the story is from Dumas Fils’ famous novel Lady of the Camellias. The whole opera consists of three acts. It was initially performed in Teatro La Fenice on Mar. 6, 1853. After further adaptation, it became one of the most popular works in different opera houses universally and was performed again and again. Many arias with elegant melody enjoy great popularity and are engraved on the mind of the audience. Among Verdi’s pieces, it has the greatest number of famous selections, which can be compete with Bizet’s Carmen. Dumas Fils once hailed: ’50 years later, people may not remember my novel, but Verdi makes it immortal.’

In 2010, National Centre for the Performing Arts (NCPA) has organized an international crew. The world top conducting maestro, Lorin Maazel, is invited to be its conductor and Artistic Director. The renowned Italian stage designer, Benito Leonori, will create a magic stage set in NCPA with flowing light and shadow as well as presenting a classical and fantastic banquet for vision and hearing.

CONDUCTOR: Andrea Battistoni

battistoni

Born in Verona in 1987, Andrea Battistoni is one of the rising young talents at the international level.

In January 2011 he was appointed First Guest Conductor at the Teatro Regio in Parma, with a three-year engagement for two operas and two symphonic productions a year.

He started his career at a very young age performing in many notable theatres such as Theater Basel, Verdi/Trieste, San Carlo/Naples, Filarmonico/Verona, La Fenice/Venice, Lirico/Cagliari, Massimo/Palermo, and Regio/Parma. He also led some prestigious orchestras: St. Petersburg State Symphony Orchestra, Orchestra di Padova e del Veneto, Orchestra Filarmonica Marchigiana, Orchestra da Camera di Mantova, Orchestra dei Pomeriggi Musicali di Milano, Royal College of Music Orchestra Manchester, Orchestra dell’Arena di Verona, Orchestra Giovanile Italiana, and Orchestra Haydn di Bolzano e Trento.

He took part in several festivals such as “Michelangeli” of Brescia and Bergamo, Verona Contemporanea, Festival Giovane at Rossini Opera Festival, Valle d’Itria of Martina Franca, Settimane Musicali di Stresa e del Lago Maggiore, Festival Verdi in Parma where he met distinguished soloists like Ivo Pogorelich, Enrico Dindo, Sergej Krylov, Thomas Demenga, and Mario Brunello.

Andrea Battistoni has already conducted operas including La Bohème, Il Viaggio a Reims, Il Matrimonio Segreto, Attila and La Traviata. Other engagements included the 2011 season opening concert at Teatro Regio in Parma and the return to I Pomeriggi Musicali and Orchestra Filarmonica Marchigiana.

Among his recent successes: a symphonic concert at the Teatro Lirico in Cagliari, Il Barbiere di Siviglia in Parma, Arena di Verona and Venice, the symphonic debut with the Maggio Musicale Orchestra of Florence, Rigoletto in Macerata. Rigoletto and symphonic concerts at the Filarmonico in Verona, Falstaff at the Festival Verdi in Parma and Nabucco in Tokyo with the Tokyo Philharmonic.

Noteworthy his debut at the Teatro alla Scala in Milano and the historical production of Le Nozze di Figaro and at the Teatro Regio in Parma with Stiffelio, Il Trovatore in concert form at the Deutsche Oper Berlin, La Bohème in Naples and La Traviata at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino.

His upcoming engagements include: debut with the Accademia di Santa Cecilia in Rome, MITO Festival leading the Orchestra Filarmonica della Scala, La Bohème at the Dresden Semperoper and at the Valencia Palau de Les Arts, Attila at the Teatro Filarmonico in Verona, Macbeth at the Teatro Carlo Felice in Genova, several concerts in the main American Universities in New York, Boston, Chicago and Miami, La Traviata at the Arena di Verona and a new production of Nabucco at the Deutsche Oper Berlin.

CAST

Apr. 10 Apr. 11 Apr. 12
Violetta Zhang Liping Zhou Xiaolin Zhang Liping
Alfredo Wang Chuanyue Warren Mok Wang Chuanyue
Germont Liao Changyong Zhang Feng Liao Changyong
Flora Yang Yanting Chen Yajie Yang Yanting

Zhang Liping as Violetta
Zhang Liping currently is Chair and Professor of the Vocal Music and Opera Department of China Central Conservatory of Music. In March 2004, she became the first Chinese in history to perform as the diva in the opera Madama Butterfly at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Meanwhile, she is also the first Chinese opera singer to perform the leading cast in the Royal Opera House, Convent Garden, where she has starred in a number of opera works, including the extremely difficult Lucia di Lammermo, which is regarded by the House as a box office draw.

 

Zhang Liping has also cast leading roles on the stages of Teatro Regio di Parma, Munich State Opera, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Barcelona Opera House, Teatro La Fenice, in almost 20 operas including Rigoletto, Madama Butterfly, La Boheme, Lucia di Lammermo, Turandot, La Traviata, Carmen, Faust, The Marriage of Figaro and The Magic Flute. At the invitation of Mr. Webber, Father of music opera, Zhang appeared in the premiere of his new play True Love Never Dies in London, and recorded the theme song in Chinese.

EMI Classics released Zhang Liping’s debut disc Arias in 2008, which has won worldwide acclaims. In 2009, Zhang saw some of her works collected into EMI’s best annual opera selections CD, along with those of such giant singers as Callas, Domingo and Carreras. She performed Violetta in NCPA’s production of La Traviata under the baton of Maestro Lorin Maazel. She played Xi Shi in the first NCPA-commission Opera Xi Shi, and Desdemona in NCPA’s production of Otello.

 

Zhou Xiaolin as Violetta
Zhou graduated from Central Conservatory of Music where she has studied with Yang Xiaoping and serves as soloist of PLA’s General Political Department Opera Troupe, gaining in popularity in recent years. In 2007, she won recognition in the training program run by the Central City Opera House, Colorado, U.S. in the summer of 2007, receiving full scholarship and was invited to participate in the world premiere of Poet Li Bai composed by Chinese composer Guo Wenjing. It is worth mentioning that she succeeded in holding recitals in Tokyo and Osaka, Japan and won an award in Neue Stimmen International Singing Competition, came in first and won Anna and John J Sie award in Carlo Bergorzi Maestro Class, the golden prize in China Gold Bell Award Bel Canto Group and the second prize in Wenhua Vocal Competition awarded by Ministry of Culture.

Zhou performed as the soprano soloist in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 with German Philharmonic Orchestra during its China tour, in Beethoven Symphony No.9 conducted by Lorin Maazel as a soprano cantor and in Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 conducted by Vladimir Ashkenazy as the soprano cantor. Additionally, she sang the role of Mimi in La Bohème by Puccini, starred Yang Caihong in A Village Teacher, the NCPA’s first realistic opera, and appeared as Micaela in Carmen by Georges Bizet, Princess in NCPA’s Chinese Orphan, and Antonia/Stella in NCPA’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann.

 

Wang Chuanyue as Alfredo
Wang Chuanyue is a young tenor from Opera Troupe of the General Political Department. He graduated from Vocal Department of China Central Conservatory of Music where he scored the highest in five consecutive years.

He has been the lead role in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale and Verdi’s La Traviata. In 2005 he was auditioned to be a student of Bergonzi’s International Master Class. In 2008 he enrolled in the Opera Centre of Juilliard School studying after professor Edith Bers, Dean of Vocal Department.

Wang had wonderful performances in both the 11th and the 13th China CCTV Young Singers Competition, and he is also a winner of many national and international competitions, such as Excellent Awards among Chinese competitors in the 12th Neue Stimmen International Singing Competition(2005), the second prize in the audition of Chinese competitors in the 3rdInternational Vocal Competition(2007) hosted by Chinese Musicians Association, Excellent Awards in the 26th International Hans Gabor Belvedere Singing Competition(2007), the fourth prize in the 4th China International Vocal Competition(2008) hosted by China’s Ministry of Culture, the first prize in the International Artists’ Vocal Competition(2009), and the first prize in the 5th China International Vocal Competition(2011).

 

Warren Mok as Alfredo
Warren Mok once performed in NCPA’s productions of Carmen, Die Fledermaus, La Boheme, The Chinese Orphan,Turandot, Der Fliegende Hollander and Lohengrin.

In 2008, Mok was awardedCavaliere dell’ Ordine della Stella della Solitarita’ Italiana from the Government of Italy, Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres from the French Government, in 2011 he just received the Medal of Honor from the Hong Kong Government. All awards honor his contribution to bring the cultural exchanges between Hong Kong, Italy & France, mainland China.

since his European début in 1987 at the Deutsche Opera Berlin Mok has been making frequent guest appearances throughout the world, including Deutsche Opera Berlin, Paris Opera, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Opera Australia in Sydney Opera House, Teatro di Bologna Comunale, Teatro Carlo Felice Genova, Teatro Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Opera de Nice, Opera de Lyon, Teatro Colon in Buenos Aires, The Netherlands Opera, Leipzig Opera, Royal Danish Opera, Teatro di San Carlos Lisbon, Seattle Opera, Bolshoi Theatre, Warsaw Opera, Teatro Lirico di Cagliari in Italy, ABAO Bilbao, Opera Ireland, Teatro di Palma di Mallorca, Nancy Opera France, Bergen Opera Norway, Latvian National Opera, Lithuanian National Opera, Orlando Opera Florida, Hawaii Opera Theater, concert halls in New York’s Carnegie Hall, London’s Royal Albert Hall, Berlin Philharmonie, Vienna Musik Verein, Tokyo Suntori Hall, Seoul, Prague and Zurich.

His operatic repertoire exceeds 60 roles including Calaf (Turandot), Cavaradossi (Tosca), Rodolfo (La Bohème), Don Jose (Carmen), Riccardo (Masked Ball), Radames (Aida), Duke (Rigoletto), Alfredo (La Traviata), Don Carlos, Romeo , Faust, Werther, and many others.

In 2009, he sang Ariadne auf Naxos at Teatro Carlo Felice, Manon Lescaut at Opera de Nice, Turandot at Savonlinna Festival. Opera, La Boheme at National Centre for Performing Arts in Beijing. In Summer, he performed Tosca & Carmen at Caracalla with Teatro Dell’Opera di Roma.He also sang in famous Director Zhang Yi Mo’s Turandot at Olympic Stadium in Beijing.

In 2010, he started the year to perform Adriana Lecouvreur in Teatro del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, Tosca in Opera di Roma & Teatro Carlo Felice, Carmen in National Centre for Performing Arts in Beijing. He produced Manon & La Boheme with Opera Hong Kong, Il Trovatore in Macau International Music Festival, numerous concerts/TV appearances in China.

In 2011, He sang a world premier opera Sun Yat Sen, Tosca in West Palm Beach Opera, in Guangzhou Opera House, Francesca da Rimini in Teatro Verdi Triete, Die Fledermaus at National Centre for Performing Arts Beijing, Turandot in Seoul Arts Centre.

In 2012, He sang Wagner’s Der Fliegende Hollander and Lohengrin at NCPA, producing Carmen & La Travaita with Opera Hong Kong & Shanghai Opera House. He is the current Artistic Director of Opera Hong Kong & Macau International Music Festival.

 

Liao Changyong as Germont
Liao Changyong has played in NCPA’s La Traviata, Il barbiere di Siviglia and Un Ballo in Maschera.

Liao Changyong is an outstanding Asian vocalist taking an active part in the global stage. He ever studied with the famous vocal music educator Zhou Xiaoyan and tenor Luo Wei. In 1995, Liao Changyong obtained his master’s degree at Shanghai Conservatory of Music. Over the years, Liao has won many international vocal music awards. From 1996-1997, he was respectively the highest-class winner of the 41st Toulouse International Voice Competition (France), Placido Domingo World Opera Competition and Norwegian Queen Sonja’s International Vocal Music Competition within one year, thereby shocking the world music circles.

Liao Changyong’s footprints spread all over the world. He has cooperated with more than a dozen of world-renowned orchestras and opera masters such as Placido Domingo, Jose Carreras and Ruth Ann Swansm to perform successful operas and dozens of concerts. In 2002, New York Opera House Symphony Orchestra and Carnegie Hall awarded Liao Changyong with ‘Distinguished Artist Award’, and specifically held his solo concert in Carnegie Hall. Afterwards, he cooperated with New York Opera House Symphony Orchestra, Michigan Opera, Washington National Opera, Royal Opera House (the Netherlands) and other organs to stage such operas as Attila, Il Pirata, Trovatore, Un Ballo In Maschera, La Traviata, Il barbiere di Siviglia, Don Carlo and Carmen. Liao Changyong is praised by local media as ‘the most outstanding artist’. The New York Times and Opera Magazine speak highly of Liao Changyong’s performance and singing.

Liao Changyong is Vice President of Chinese Musicians Association, Vice President of Shanghai Musicians Association and Dean of Vocal Music Department in Shanghai Conservatory of Music.

 

NCPA Chorus
choruschinaThe 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 invites 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 and arts outreach events.

Ever since its establishment, the Chorus has actively performed in more than 20 operas of NCPA production, such as NCPA’s commission operas Xi Shi, The Chinese Orphan, and The Ballad of Canal, as well as other classical operas in and out of China: The White-Haired Girl, The Red Guards on Honghu Lake, Le Nozze di Figaro, Il Barbiere di Siviglia, L’italiana in Algeri, Rigoletto,La Traviata, Otello, Der Fliegende Hollander, Lohengrin, Carmen, Turandot andTosca, etc. Its artistic quality receives rave acclaims from both the critics and the audience.

Besides operas, the Chorus has participated in many grand vocal works and themed concerts, such as Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Mahler’s Symphony No.2 and No.8, and the grand music and dance epic Road to Revive, etc. As NCPA’s resident chorus, it has been to Singapore, South Korea, Hong Kong and Japan to participate in performances and arts exchange, both to wide acclaims.

The Chorus has cooperated with many well-known artists ever since its establishment, receiving high praises from them all. Plácido Domingo once said it was his honor to cooperate with these talented young artists; Lorin Maazel ever praised it “a chorus full of passion”, so and so forth. On the stage of NCPA, the Chorus has cooperated with such directors as Francesca Zambello, Giancarlo Del Monaco, Chen Xinyi, Cao Qijing, Liao Xianghong, such conductors as Lorin Maazel, Daniel Oren, Lu Jia, Li Xincao, Zhang Guoyong, such vocalists as Plácido Domingo, Leo Nucci, Inva Mula, Brandon Jovanovich, Dai Yuqiang, Wei Song, Warren Mok, He Hui, Dilbèr, Zhang Liping, to name just a few. With more than a hundred performances each year, the Chorus is surely to play an active role in the further development of NCPA.

 

NCPA Orchestra
The 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’s 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’s 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’s 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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