Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Opera North new season - 2014/15

Opera North
Opera North's new season promises eight operas and a musical, including six new productions with repertoire stretching from Monteverdi to Jonathan Dove. There are new productions of Verdi's La Traviata, Monteverdi's Coronation of Poppea, Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, Puccini's Gianni Schicchi, Jonthan Dove's Swanhunter and Wagner's The Flying Dutchman, plus revivals of Smetana's The Bartered Bride and De Falla's Vida Breve (in a programme with Gianni Schicchi). The musical is Rogers and Hamerstein's Carousel.

OPera North - 2014-15
La Traviata is directed by Alessandro Talevi (who directed two terrific Donizetti operas for WNO last year) and is double cast with Autumn 2014, and Winter 2015 casts. In Autumn 2014, Gianluca Marciano (a great favourite at Grange Park Opera) conducts Hye-Youn Lee (who sang Blanche in Poulenc's Carmelites for Grange Park) as Violetta, whilst in Winter 2015 Olivier Dohnanyi conducts Polish soprano Anna Jeruc-Kopec, with Jin Min-Park as Alfredo and Roland Wood and Stephen Gadd sharing Germon.

The Marriage of Figaro is directed by Jo Davies, conducted by Anthony Kraus and James Holmes, with Richard Burkhard, Silvia Moi, Quirijn de Lang, Ana Maria Labin (who made an impression as Juliet in the recent COG I Capuleti e i Montecchi), and Helen Sherman as Cherubino (I interviewed Helen about playing male roles for this blog last year).

The company's first ever production of The Coronation of Poppea is directed by Tim Albery and conducted by Lawrence Cummings and thankfully has a counter-tenor as Nero - James Laing, joined by counter-tenor Christopher Ainslie as Ottone, plus Sandra Piques Eddy as Poppea

Gianni Schicchi will be directed by Christopher Alden (a very striking combination of director and work) with Christopher Purves in the title role. Whilst Alden's production of De Falla's La Vida Breve returns with Anne Sophie Duprels as Salud, and Jesus Alvarez as Paco, played in tandem with Gianni Schicchi. Both operas are conducted by Jac van Steen and Martin Picard.

Peter Mumford (who created the concert staging for Opera North's Ring Cycle) directs The Flying Dutchman with Hungarian baritone Bela Perencz in the title role, plus Alyn Mellor as Senta and Mati Turi as Erik, conducted by Richard Farnes. The Flying Dutchman builds on the company's success with Wagner's Ring Cycle, which comes to fruition this summer with Richard Farnes conducting The Twighlight of the Gods, Farnes final production as music director. Farnes will return in 2016 for the performance of complete a Ring Cycle. Though a dramatic concert staging rather than fully staged, this brave endeavour will represent the first time a UK company has toured a complete Ring Cycle in the UK in a long while.

Daniel Slater's production of The Bartered Bride returns with Anthony Kraus and James Holmes conducting Kate Valentine, Brendan Gunnell, Nicholas Watts and James Creswell. Rogers and Hamerstein's Carousel is directed by Jo Davies and conducted by James Holmes, with choreography by Kay Shepherd and Kim Brandstrup.

The orchestra of Opera North has its own lively existence with its own series in Kirklees at Huddersfield and Dewsbury Town Halls, plus performing in the Leeds International Concert Season, the Ryedale Festival and the Ripon Festival; highlights include Mozart's Requiem (plus the chorus of Opera North) with Jac van Steen conducting. And of course there is a lively programme of smaller events in the Howard Assembly Rooms at the Grand Theatre in Leeds.

Further information from the Opera North website.

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