From Development server
12 March 2008

Contentious Austrian Filmmaker Michael Haneke to Stage New York City Opera Così in 2012

New York City Opera has announced that it has enlisted controversial Austrian film director Michael Haneke to stage a new production of Così fan Futte in 2012. The production is to be presented by City Opera's general manager designate Gerard Mortier, whose tenure begins in September 2009.

Known for his discomfiting cinematic explorations of societal ills, Haneke previously staged a production of Don Giovanni set in Paris's financial district as part of the 2005-06 season at Opéra National de Paris, where Mortier is currently general director. His movie Funny Games - a shot-for-shot English-language remake of the director's 1997 Austrian film of the same name - receives a limited release in the United States and Canada on March 14.

Haneke made his feature film debut in 1989 with The Seventh Continent, and has gone on to direct films that have included Benny's Video; The Piano Teacher - winner of the Cannes Film Festival's Grand Prize; Code Unknown; Time of the Wolf; and Caché. Haneke has also worked as a film critic, editor, dramaturg, playwright, stage director and television director.

Haneke has said that his contentious cinematic style, which often employs unflinching images of violence and sadism, amounts to "a cinema of insistent questions instead of false (because too quick) answers, of clarifying distance in place of violating closeness, of provocation and dialogue instead of consumption and consensus."

More information can be found at New York City Opera and the OPERA NEWS Archives.

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