• Washington DC 2013-2014 operatic season

    From member Hoffmann came this announcement:

    The Washington National Opera announced its 2013 - 2014 season today. An interesting roster that could be promising, everything considered:

    1. Moby Dick

    Captain Ahab: Carl Tanner
    Ishmael (Greenhorn): Stephen Costello
    Starbuck: Matthew Worth
    Queequeg: Eric Greene
    Pip: Talise Trevigne

    Conductor: Evan Rogister
    Director: Leonard Foglia

    2. L'elisir d'amore

    Adina: Sarah Coburn, Ekaterina Siurina
    Nemorino: Stephen Costello, Daniel Montenegro
    Sargeant Belcore: Simone Alberghini, Aleksey Bogdanov
    Dulcamara: Nicola Ulivieri, Peixin Chen

    Conductor: Ward Stare
    Director: Stephen Lawless

    3. La forza del destino

    Donna Leonora di Vargas: Adina Aaron, Amber Wagner
    Don Alvaro: Giancarlo Monsalve, Rafael Davila
    Don Carlo di Vargas: Luca Salsi, Àngel Òdena
    Preziosilla: Ketevan Kemoklidze
    Fra Melitone: Valeriano Lanchas
    Padre Guardiano: Enrico Iori

    Conductor: Xian Zhang
    Director: Francesca Zambello

    4. Die Zauberflöte

    The Queen of the Night: Kathryn Lewek, Anna Siminska
    Pamina: Eri Nakamura, Maureen McKay
    Tamino: Joseph Kaiser, Paul Appleby
    Papageno: Joshua Hopkins, Kostas Smoriginas
    Sarastro: Soloman Howard, Jordan Bisch

    Conductor: Philippe Auguin
    Director: Harry Silverstein

    5. Tristan und Isolde

    Tristan: Ian Storey
    Isolde: Deborah Voigt
    Brangäne: Elizabeth Bishop
    Kurwenal: James Rutherford
    King Marke: Wilhelm Schwinghammer

    Conductor: Philippe Auguin
    Director: Neil Armfield

    and, last but not least:

    The National Symphony will perform Der Rosenkavalier in concert, conducted by Christoph Eschenbach, with Renee Fleming and Sarah Connolly, Marisol Montalvo, Franz Hawlata, Steve Davislim (I don't know the date).

    For the most part, with the exception of Tristan, I am clueless about the casting. All of these casts are new to me, so who knows what standard of singing to expect. As far as Tristan goes, I was not particularly impressed the last time I saw Deborah Voigt (Les Troyens - Cassandra), so I'm not sure what her Isolde will be like. I've never seen La forza del destino or Moby Dick, so those two are new to me. Also interesting: No Puccini - I'm not sure I remember the last time that happened!

    Still only 5 productions - WNO had been up to 7 operas before the economy tanked, and I thought maybe since the company merged with the Kennedy Center, that its financial situation might have stabilized enough to start building back up to 7 productions.
    Comments 4 Comments
    1. Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
      Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) -
      Well, I saw Elizabeth Bishop, the Brangäne, performing Sieglinde at NC Opera, and she was very good. I also interviewed her, and she is smart, articulate, and lots of fun. So, I'll probably travel up there to see this Tristan.
    1. dlsiemer's Avatar
      dlsiemer -
      live in baltimore. the only opera here now is the lyric and it is very expensive so i'm thinking of making the dc trek. won't do it but once probably, twice at the most. am not extremely knowledgeable about opera although have heard of Tristan and Isolde and don't think i'd love it - unless someone (as Luiz Gazzola) feels this show and cast are worth it even so... anyone have a comment for me? i'd like to choose a show that someone thinks will be great... i'm not really as picky as i might sound...
    1. Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
      Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) -
      Welcome to Opera Lively, dlsiemer. Well, Tristan und Isolde is my second favorite opera of them all among the 500 or so that I know (coming right after The Ring of the Nibelung taken as one). I believe it is simply perfect, and beats all other operas of the repertory except for the Ring; even Les Troyens, my third favorite, and beating Les Troyens is no easy feat. So, how is that for "great"? Definitely, a production of Tristan und Isolde is worth the trip. Now, I'm also not sure about Deborah Voigt's ability to sing the role of Isolde either, just like our friend Hoffman said, and I don't know Ian Storey. The Washington National Opera doesn't exactly have a reputation for sublime productions, singing, and orchestral playing, but still, the opera is extraordinary, so, it should be fun, and I'm certainly rooting for the betterment of the WNO - we really need a premier opera company in our nation's capital.

      So, this production is running on September 15, 18, 21, 24, and 27, at 2 PM on the 15, and 6 PM the other days.

      I said I'd consider going. Unfortunately the only day it would be possible for me, the 21, I'll be in Houston.
    1. Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva)'s Avatar
      Luiz Gazzola (Almaviva) -
      @ Hoffman - actually, WNO is presenting more than 5 operas this season. There are these 5 from the standard repertory, but the company is also presenting 3 short (20') new American operas in a triple-bill on November 13 (strangely enough, they don't say which ones), then a new 1-hour American opera on June 13 and June 14 (again, no detailed announcement), and also the world premiere of a new children's opera, with 5 performances in December, The Lion, the Unicorn, and Me. There is also a recital with our interviewee Paul Appleby on April 6.

      So, these three events plus the five standard operas, is not so bad for this day and age (8 events).

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