The Zarzuela Theater recovers the opera 'Farinelli' 118 years after its premiere

Guillermo García Calvo

He Teatro de la Zarzuela cumple una labor esencial in the preservation, Recovery, revisión Y difusión of our operatic heritage, so they require their statutes and strict compliance by the Coliseum season to season. De ahí que la programación de ‘Farinelli’, ópera de Tomas Breton en un prólogo y tres actos, sea uno de los títulos de 2019/2020 esperados con singular y nerviosa expectación. Con libreto del precoz escritor sevillano, académico de la Lengua (también político y gran orador) Juan Antonio Cavestany, la partitura de quien en palabras del ilustre profesor Emilio Casares, “es probablemente el mejor compositor de ópera de nuestra historia” es una “especie de fusión” en la que conviven wagnerismo, “verismo”, ópera francesa e historicismo. Se estrenó el 14 May 1902 en el nuevo y gigantesco Teatro Lírico de Madrid (el más grande que nunca ha tenido la ciudad), capable 2.900 espectadores y visibilidad “casi perfecta”, erigido en la calle Marqués de la Ensenada y dirigido por Ruperto Chapí, en lo que pretendía ser un proyecto de gran envergadura en defensa e impulso de la ópera española en clara disputa con otros teatros que mostraban su abierto rechazo a la lírica compuesta de puertas adentro. For this reason, Saturday 15 Y Monday 17 February (ambos a las 20h00) will be dos fechas necesariamente trascendentes para nuestra lírica. The play, de la que no existe grabación alguna, de ahí la relevancia del registro que llevará a cabo Radio Clásica para su emisión en fechas próximas, volverá a escucharse más de un siglo después de su última audición. Será en concert version and with adaptación libre de la reconocida dramaturga María Velasco. Música totalmente nueva, well, to our ears the XXI century.

‘Farinelli’ fue víctima de la misma apatía que otras cerca de 700 óperas compuestas en España y condenadas al más profundo de los olvidos. Y es curioso, como recuerda Casares, que decenas de ellas fueron “aplaudidas por el exigente público del ochocientos”. La efervescencia de la ópera como uno de los géneros predilectos en España, culmina en las dos primeras décadas del nuevo siglo (el XX) con el estreno, en ese periodo, of over 100 óperas españolas. Nada menos.

Los dos conciertos que ahora hacen justicia a ‘Farinelli’ (una de las ocho grandes óperas compuestas por Bretón entre las más de 140 obras que componen su catálogo, algunas tan universales como 'Verbena Paloma' O ‘La Dolores’) estarán dirigidos por Guillermo García Calvo, musical director of the Teatro de la Zarzuela from the past 1 from January, and musical director general of the century German Opera of Chemnitz and his orchestra -the Robert Schumann Philharmonie- since 2017 Y one of the most outstanding Spanish masters and sought after in Europe. García Calvo, to the front of the Titular Orchestra of the Teatro, the ORCAM, must undertake the melodic inspiration, the demanding vocal writing and the solvent orchestral and choral speech which build stately structure 'Farinelli, and it is no wonder if you consider that, plus a portentous violinist, Breton was a Grand conductor.

The numerous and intense choral passages is another of the peculiarities of this opera. "It is not excessive to point out that we have a choral work", warns Emilio Casares, arguing it with an incontestable fact: "Of the twenty-six scenes that make up, only six missing the choir. " It is this, so, a good opportunity for the showcasing of the Holder Choir Teatro de la Zarzuela under the direction of Antonio Fauró.

Likewise, to mitigate these difficulties, the orchestra and the chorus must necessarily involve voices first row. And that's what Theater Zarzuela met for this new and historical coming-out 'Farinelli'.

the mezzosoprano Maite Beaumont will play the role of Farinelli (Carlo Broschi) who falls to despair Beatrice (alter ego in the work of the singer in the mid-eighteenth Elena Pieri), Also sung by mezzo Nancy Fabiola Herrera, who deserves in this infatuation. Both must be separated. Farinelli travels to Spain while Beatriz remains in Italy. both suffer, first separation and then the difficult reunion, in whose outcome is of particular prominence Jorge, Father de Farinelli, baritone whose skin gets Hispanic-Brazilian Rodrigo Esteves. This Beatrice reveals the real reason for the rejection that since arriving in Spain suffers from the tormented Farinelli: She is also his daughter, and therefore, sister Farinelli. And as dejection and entangling, several of the nicest moments of the plot starring the character of Dr., who gives life baritone David Menendez.

Support for young singers

At this point, we must refer to two of the surprises in store for the public, and highlights the strong commitment of the Teatro de la Zarzuela in discovering and supporting young performers: From one side, Mexican tenor Leonardo Sánchez, the youngest artist of the International Opernstudio of the Zurich Opera House and won three different awards ('First place', 'Youth Revelation' and 'Special') in the 34th edition of the Carlo Morelli Singing Competition, the lyrical song contest important in Mexico; Alberto Sánchez plays, Farinelli friend who brings Beatriz to Spain and ending with her espousing anguish of the singer. On the other hand, the surprise will come riding the deep voice Manuel Fuentes, which recently was tricampeón of the VII International Singing Competition Alfredo Kraus (first prize, award and the public award for the best singer of Spanish nationality), besides being won two major awards in the first edition of the International Competition Lyrical Alicante. Sources assume the role of bandleader.

The story flows like a river in the literature of Maria Velasco, and will be the veteran actor Emilio Gutiérrez Caba who among the musical numbers exercised narrator of events; definitely an added incentive this happy recovery.

photo by © david Bohmann photography

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