OperaWatch

by F. PAUL DRISCOLL

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Setting for Spoleto USA’s Paradise Interrupted
© Guo Zheng Zhang 2015
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Antonenko, set for Otello
© Johannes Ifkovits 2015
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Mezzo Danilov
Courtesy Monica Danilov

1. TIM MEAD sings the title role next month in Richard the Lionheart, OPERA THEATRE OF SAINT LOUIS’snew English-language translation of Handel’s Riccardo Primo. Other 2015 engagements for the English countertenor include Written on Skin at the Mostly Mozart Festival (Aug.), Arsamene in Cavalli’s Xerse at Opéra de Lille (Oct.), Britten’s Oberon at Bergen National Opera (Nov.) and Messiah with the New York Philharmonic (Dec.).

2. On May 22, SPOLETO FESTIVAL USA offers the world premiere of PARADISE INTERRUPTED, a new “installation opera” that features an origami-style paper garden unfolding on an empty stage. Conceived by artist Jennifer Wen Ma, with music by Huang Ruo, Paradise stars Chinese soprano Qian Yi as The Woman, a dreamer in search of an unattainable ideal.

3. JONAS KAUFMANN and ANJA HARTEROS are the stars of a new Aida from Warner Classics. Conducted by ANTONIO PAPPANO, Aida was recorded in mid-February under studio conditions at Rome’s Parco della Musica — Sala Santa Cecilia. On February 27, the same artists performed a sold-out concert of Aida in the same auditorium.

4. Bass-baritone JAMES MORRIS has joined the voice faculty of MANHATTAN SCHOOL OF MUSIC. Morris, who was Hans Sachs in this season’s Meistersinger von Nürnberg at the Met, returns to the company next season for Timur in Turandot and Lodovico in a new Otello staging.

5. ALEKSANDRS ANTONENKO will sing his first Met performance of Otello on September 21, the opening night of the 2015–16 season. Antonenko’s colleagues for Bartlett Sher’s staging of Verdi’s opera include Sonya Yoncheva, Željko Lučić and conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin. For more on the upcoming Met season, visit www.metopera.org.

6. Mezzo-soprano MONICA DANILOV is singing Maria Rainer von Trapp in La Novicia Rebelde, a new Spanish-language production of The Sound of Music in Bogotá, Colombia. A graduate of Manhattan School of Music, Danilov won the role in a nationally advertised talent search sponsored by El Tiempo, the highest-circulation newspaper in Colombia, which is presenting La Novicia Rebelde in conjuction with MISI Productions. spacer 

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Current Issue: May 2015 — VOL. 79, NO. 11