Unprecedented success for the XXXVII edition of the Rossini Opera Festival. The box office registered an absolute record in takings (1.158.000 euro) and a number of patrons (17.250) never recorded in the recent history of the event. The percentage of foreigners has even reached 71%, showing the ever-growing interest of the public and the popularity of the Festival; the largest numbers came from France, Germany, Japan, England, the USA, Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain and Holland. No fewer than 42 nations were represented, including newcomers such as Colombia, Mexico, Peru, Costa Rica and Turkey.
Many of the journalists also come from abroad. Articles on the Festival have been written by journalists from 24 countries throughout the world: Argentina, Austria, Belgium, the Vatican, France, Germany, Japan, Greece, England, Latvia, Luxembourg, Peru, the Czech Republic, Rumania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Spain, the USA, Sweden, Switzerland, South Africa, Hungary.
Rai Radio3 has broadcast live the operas presented in the Festival, repeated by the radio of 14 countries in 3 continents (Australia, Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, England, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Rumania, Serbia, Spain, the USA, Sweden). Furthermore, the three operas were heard live on line all over the world, and, for a week, on streaming on demand on the RAI Radio3 website.
On the 12th August Il viaggio a Reims was broadcast on live streaming on the Rossini Opera Festival’s website, Facebook page and YouTube channel.
Together with the big names of the international critical faculty, the Festival was visited by representatives of some of the most important opera houses and concert organizations: the Metropolitan Opera, the Japan Opera Foundation, the Theater an der Wien, De Vlaamse Opera, the Opera Vlandeeren, the Opéra Royal de Wallonie, the Dutch National Opera & Ballet, the Semperoper Dresden, Rossini in Wildbad, the Bayerische Staatsoper, the Opéra National de Paris, the Théâtre Châtelet de Paris, the Opéra de Rennes, the Opéra National du Rhin, the Royal Opera House of Muscate, the Teatro Comunale, Bologna, the Teatro Comunale, Ferrara, the Teatro Carlo Felice, Genoa, the Macerata Opera Festival, the Teatro San Carlo, Naples, the Teatro Massimo, Palermo, the Teatro Regio, Parma, the RAI International Orchestra.
The XXXVIII Rossini Opera Festival (10-22 August 2017) will propose two important musicological novelties, realized in collaboration with the Fondazione Rossini: Le siege de Corinthe (conducted by Roberto Abbado and staged by Fura dels Baus) and La pietra del paragone (conducted by Daniele Rustioni and staged by Pierluigi Pizzi). Beside these, a revival of the very rarely performed Torvaldo e Dorliska (conducted by Francesco Lanzillotta and staged by Mario Martone).
Ciro in Babilonia returns to the ROF 2016
After the triumphant first performances in 2012, Ciro in Babilonia returned to the Rof (performances on the 10th, 13th, 16th and 20th August at 8.00 p.m. at the Teatro Rossini) as the third opera on the bill of the XXXVII Rossini Opera Festival. Jader Bignamini, a well-established conductor making his Pesaro début, conducted the Chorus and Orchestra of the Teatro Comunale, Bologna, and a cast led by the indispensable Ewa Podles in the title role; joined by Pretty Yende (another important début at the Rof), the confirmed Rossini specialist Antonino Siragusa, the promising Oleg Tsibulko and some of the promising singers issuing from the Accademia Rossiniana: Isabella Gaudì, Alessandro Luciano and Dimitri Pkhaladze.
Davide Livermore, assisted by D-wok (video design), Nicolas Bovey (sets) and Gianluca Falaschi (costumes, for which he won the Abbiati Prize), have placed the action in the sets typical of the early cinema. Cuttings of silent films were used (among them the complete Babilonian scene from David W. Griffith’s celebrated film Intolerance), the projection of which forms a background to the intricate biblical story, which takes on all the colouring of a colossal historical film. The show has been realized in collaboration with the Museo Nazionale del Cinema of Turin.
CIRO IN BABILONIA
Dramma con cori per musica by Francesco Aventi
Conductor Jader Bignamini
Director Davide Livermore
Settings and Lighting designer Nicolas Bovey
Costumes Gianluca Falaschi
Interpreters Baldassare Antonino Siragusa, Ciro Ewa Podles, Amira Pretty Yende, Argene Isabella Gaudí, Zambri Oleg Tsybulko, Arbace Alessandro Luciano, Daniello Dimitri Pkhaladze
Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Comunale di Bologna
The second opera on the bill at the XXXVII Rossini Opera Festival is Il Turco in Italia (to be performed on the 9th, 12th, 16th and 18th August at the Teatro Rossini at 8.00 p.m.). Speranza Scappucci will conduct the Filarmonica Gioachino Rossini, the Chorus of the Teatro della Fortuna, Fano, and a brilliant young cast: Erwin Schott, making his first appearance in Pesaro; welcome return appearances of true Rossini stars such as Olga Peretyatko, Nicola Alaimo, Rene Barbera, Pietro Spagnoli; young students from the Accademia Rossiniana like Cecilia Molinari and Pietro Adaini, the last a graduate of this year’s course. This is a co-production with the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia, Valencia.
The production has been entrusted to the visionary liveliness of Davide Livermore, who has created such important productions for the Rof as Demetrio e Polibio, Ciro in Babilonia (revived this year) and L’Italiana in Algeri. Together with D-Wok (video design) and the costumist Gianluca Falaschi, Livermore has imagined the intricate love-passages between Selim, Fiorella, Geronio and Zaida in a setting typical of Fellini, full of references to 8½: the poet Prosdocimo is dressed as Marcello Mastroianni, Fiorilla as Claudia Cardinale, while Selim is the classic playboy.
Livermore explains: “Just as happens to Mastroianni in 8½, Prosdocimo is also always on the look-out for a story. The similarity between the two scripts was so appealing, for each has the same ferocious social criticism, that we wanted to pursue it as far as possible. Together with the revival of Ciro in Babilonia, it amuses me to create a kind of cinematic and musical diptych. Then, truth to tell, Rossini and Fellini are sons of the same soil.”
IL TURCO IN ITALIA
Dramma buffo per musica by Felice Romani
Conductor Speranza Scappucci
Director and Settings Davide Livermore
Costumes Gianluca Falaschi
Lighting designer Nicolas Bovey
Interpreters Selim Erwin Schrott, Fiorilla Olga Peretyatko, Geronio Nicola Alaimo, Narciso René Barbera, Prosdocimo Pietro Spagnoli, Zaida Cecilia Molinari, Albazar Pietro Adaini
Coro del Teatro della Fortuna M. Agostini
Chorus Master Mirca Rosciani
Filarmonica Gioachino Rossini
New coproduction with Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía, Valencia
La donna del lago (performed on the 8th, 11th, 14th and 17th August at 8.00 p.m. at the Adriatic Arena) has been entrusted to Damiano Michieletto, assisted by Paolo Fantin and Klaus Bruns: his well-known talent enabled him to put on one of the operas most difficult to stage. This was a co-production with the Opéra Royal de Wallonie of Liège. The Chorus and Orchestra of the Teatro Comunale, Bologna, was led by Michele Mariotti, returning here fresh from his triumphs in conducting this opera at Covent Garden, London, and the Metropolitan, New York. The cast featured international stars who have already enjoyed spectacular successes at the Rof, like Juan Diego Flórez and Michael Spyres, and others coming from the Accademia Rossiniana, like the discovery of the 2015 edition, Salome Jicia, who undook the title rôle, and then Marko Mimica (the Podestà in La gazza ladra), Ruth Iniesta and Francisco Brito. The actors Giusi Merli and Alessandro Baldinotti also took part. The promising and rapidly progressing young mezzo-soprano Varduhi Abrahamyan sang Malcom for the first time. This is how Michieletto introduced his production: “This is an all-female story, in which the themes of nostalgia and memory play their part in creating an ambiguous atmosphere. The title itself does not tell us the name of the leading lady, but indicates a place, a liquid element from which all the story seems to originate. My dramaturgy brings back the day when Elena met the King: the elderly lady of the title is celebrating the anniversary of her wedding to Malcom and opens the gateway to the past through the filter of her memory. Thus nostalgia becomes the theme of a tale, dominated, as in Walter Scott’s poem, by rugged nature and ruins.”
LA DONNA DEL LAGO
Melodramma by Andrea Leone Tottola
Conductor Michele Mariotti
Director Damiano Michieletto
Settings Paolo Fantin
Costumes Klaus Bruns
Lighting designer Alessandro Carletti
Interpreters Giacomo V-Uberto Juan Diego Flórez, Duglas Marko Mimica, Rodrigo Michael Spyres, Elena Salome Jicia, Malcom Varduhi Abrahamyan, Albina Ruth Iniesta, Serano / Bertram Francisco Brito
Elder Elena Giusi Merli, Elder Malcom Alessandro Baldinotti
Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Comunale di Bologna
Chorus Master Andrea Faidutti
New coproduction with Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège