The Marriage of Figaro

A different Figaro wedding at the Royal Theater

The Marriage of Figaro
The Marriage of Figaro
Wolfgang A. Mozart (1756-1791)
Opera buffa in four acts
Libreto de Lorenzo da Ponte, based on the comedy La Folle journée, or the marriage of Figaro (1784) of Pierre Beaumarchais
Canadian Opera Company production from the Salzburg Festival
Teatro Real in Madrid, 28 April 2022
D. musical: Ivor Bolton
D. scene: Claus Guth
Scenographer and costume designer: Christian Schmidt
illuminator: Olaf winter
Choreographer: Ramses Sigi
Video Designer: Andi A. Müller
D. choir: Andrés Máspero
André Schuen, María José Moreno, Julie Fuchs, Vito Priante, Rachael Wilson, Monica Pods, Fernando Rado, Christopher Mountain, Moises Marin, Alexandra Flood, Leonardo Galeazzi, and Uli Kirsch, who interprets the angel
Eleven years had passed since his last Italian comedy, La Finta Giardiniera (The fake gardener) and Mozart was concerned that he could not find a suitable story for his next comedy. He reflects it in one of the letters to his father in 1783, “I have looked at more than a hundred scripts, and I haven't found one that I was satisfied with; so many changes would have to be made here and there, that even if a poet got down to it, it would be easier for him to write a completely new text”.
Headlines Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real

Then come to Vienna, hand in hand with Antonio Salieri to work at the court, Italian librettist and poet Lorenzo da Ponte. A fruitful collaboration then begins between Mozart and da Ponte that will leave behind the time of Metastasio. A new operatic journey opens that will have no return.

Mozart showed some admiration for the works of the French playwright Pierre-Augustin Caron de Beaumarchais and for one of his works, the figaro trilogy, for whose first part, The Barber of Seville (1782), Giovanni Paisiello had already put music. He chose the second of this trilogy, The crazy day, or The Marriage of Figaro (1784), which explicitly deals with the class conflicts of the time.

Beaumarchais's work, whose theatrical release was full of difficulties due to the social and political criticism it contained, can be framed within the revolutionary process that culminates in 1789 with the French Revolution. After three years of fighting with censorship, Figaro's weddings could be premiered arriving at 60 representations. But the protests and intrigues of former enemies of Beaumarchais, got the play banned across Europe.

As narrated by da Ponte in his memoirs, the opera was finished in just six weeks, “As I was writing the lyrics, Mozart composed the music. It only remained to convince José II of his suitability. da Ponte took care of it, much more diplomatic than Mozart, who promised the emperor to dispense with the most controversial parts. Entire scenes were deleted, but the ideological substance remained intact.

The liberal mentality of José II, that he had already abolished censorship and authorized a civil marriage decree that abolished parental consent, facilitated the premiere of an opera that, by having a comedy format, Kind and nice, he hid his depth charge very well.

He 1 May 1786 se estrena por fin en Viena The Marriage of Figaro, preamble of Don Giovanni and, especially, de Cosi fan all, that closes the cycle of the brilliant collaboration between Mozart and da Ponte.

Le nozze di Figaro is today one of the most performed operas in the world, even though it wasn't always like that. Arrive soon at the Royal Theater, in 1903, long before other European theaters. Later it had a few years of certain decline in programming and it was not until the sixties that, shyly, returned to operatic seasons.

The Teatro Real presents this season a production that is a true classic, the one created by Claus Guth for the Salzburg Festival in 2006, which replaces the one initially announced by Lotte de Beer and which was not very well received, being generous, at the Aix-on-Provence Festival.

Guth reuses the great architectural structures that he likes so much. Features a grand staircase in a large space as the only stage. a white decor, naked, far from the eighteenth-century excesses that usually accompany the performances of this opera. Christian Schmidt's wardrobe, also very Guth-esque, as we could see in Rodelinda, in this same theater, gray tones and uniformed. The subtle scene changes are mostly due to Olaf Winter's lighting., that it generates with shadows and small projections, the atmospheres that help describe the scene.

Also on this occasion, Guth uses a character that is not in the script but that appears constantly on the scene. This time it is a kind of Cupid that, invisible to other characters, pull everyone's strings trying to alter their behavior, sowing confusion in its wake.

The characters are treated in this production in a sober way, unadorned, revealing the deepest part of his personality. But nevertheless, the end result of the scenery is that it does not help the development or the conclusion of the story.

Ivor Bolton returned to conduct Mozart at the head of the Teatro Real's Titular Orchestra. Maybe infected by the monotonous scenery, Bolton's management has not had the brilliance and spark of other occasions. Only in a few moments have those flashes that Mozart reflected so brilliantly in his score become present.

This work is distinguished from other buffa operas by the high quality of its ensembles., that express the enormous variety of loving feelings. On this occasion they are a little opaque and lacking in freshness. The variety of textures of an orchestration as detailed as that offered by The Marriage of Figaro is not appreciated, especially in the opening and the winds.
The best of the orchestra have been the recitativi secchi, harpsichord and cello, that have allowed the scenes to be more fluid.

The vocal part has presented a balanced set of voices. To face this opera the theatrical requirement is almost at the same level as the vocal. But in this case, Besides, good physical shape is necessary.

It was a joy to see the Granada-born María José Moreno embody the role of Countess at the Royal Theater. did it with great confidence, how does she do things. Is this a little special Countess, languid and lonely, and Moreno reflected her very well in those aspects to which she adds a point of sophistication that is very appropriate to the character. He had moments of great lyricism and brilliance, especially in his two most important arias, "Porgi Amor" y "Where I am". It has a powerful center and good highs..

Suzanne, the central character of the play, was interpreted by the French Julie Fuchs. His voice is light and fresh, perfect for Susan, he lacked volume and made his character more believable, maybe too childish.

Vito Priante's Figaro was also not very credible as Susana's fiancé, he looked like his father. Very static on stage, something was lost with his character, which had been stripped of its true character by the stage manager. But his voice is high quality and has a beautiful and warm tone..

Italian baritone André Schuuen plays Count Almaviva. We could already hear him at the Capriccio a few seasons ago. He feels comfortable in character, although it lacks a bit of packaging and looks like a teenager in a suit. It defended the treble quite well and its bass zone is sufficient and consistent.

Rachael Wilson's Cherubino was, with the Countess, the best of the night. Fresh and playful in the interpretive, proved to have a good singing line and a very powerful and ringing center and treble. Too bad she was dressed the same as the fake Cherubino that Guth put on stage. He skillfully developed, the same one with which he interpreted his arias “Non so più cosa son, what do I do "y" You who know ".

At a good level were the rest of the comprimarios who in this production were somewhat lackluster in the interpretive, Monica Pods, as Marceline; Fernando Rado, as Bartolo; Christopher Mountain, like basil; Moises Marin, Don Curzio; Alexandra Flood, like Barbarina; Leonardo Galeazzi, as Antonio and Uli Kirsch, who interprets the angel or cupid.

A new reading of an opera that for the first time gives the score a fundamental role in the development of the dramatic plot.

Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real
Videos: Teatro Real

The Marriage of Figaro

Le nozze di Figaro between 22 April and 12 May at the Royal Theater, in an original production of the Salzburg Festival (2006), who commissioned Claus Guth the stage direction of the three operas of Mozart libretto by Lorenzo da Ponte, of which, Don Giovanni, was offered at the Teatro Real last season.

Considered the most perfect of Mozart's operas, Le nozze di Figaro, released in 1776, was written in less than a year in a frantic and enthusiastic manner by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791) and the versatile writer and librettist Lorenzo da Ponte (1749-1838), in their first and fruitful collaboration, which would continue with Così fan tutte Y Don Giovanni.

Both creators were imbued with the fervor of the new revolutionary ideas that brazenly defended the theatrical work of Pierre-Augustin de Beaumarchais (1732-1799) on which the opera is based, The crazy day, or The Marriage of Figaro, premiered to great scandal and uproar just a year before, causing the seclusion of the author and the prohibition of the work in various European courts.

With great skill Da Ponte reduces and conceals the most explicitly political content of the work, maintaining the complex relationships between the different characters, to whom Mozart's fabulous score gives an unusual psychological depth, hidden under the classical forms of comic opera.

Music, supported by a perfect framework of symmetries and structural and harmonic games, with arias and ensemble numbers of enormous beauty, suggests, they work, contradicts, hints, denies and illuminates what the words of the protagonists hide, within a seemingly comic entanglement.

In his stage proposal, Claus Guth try, precisely, explore what beats in the soul of the characters beyond comedy, listening to the unspeakable side, ambiguous, contradictory, Sinister, sadistic or lewd in love relationships.

In parallel with the classical structure of the score, Guth, together with the set designer and costume designer Christian Schmidt, sets the plot in an old and austere palace, with the characters corseted in suits that reveal their social origin and determine their way of proceeding. From there, like in an Ingmar Bergman movie, or in an August Strindberg drama, Guth is 'unmasking' what happens inside the characters with the help of a silent 'angel' who shows the viewer the unspeakable, cloudy or dark love relationships.

Two select casts bring to life the complex characters of this choral opera, that hide ties of seduction, love, desire, passion, boredom or resentment: Andre Schuen Y Joan Martin-Royo (Count of Almaviva); María José Moreno Y Miren Urbieta-Vega (Countess of Almaviva); Julie Fuchs Y Elena Sancho Pereg (Susanna); Vito Priante Y Thomas Oliemans (Figaro); Rachael Wilson Y Maite Beaumont (Cherub); Monica Pods Y Gemma Coma-Alabert (Marcellina); Y Fernando Rado Y Daniel Giulianini (Bartolo).

Ivor Bolton, musical director of the Royal Theater, redirect Le nozze di Figaro from his pit, after the success obtained with the same score in 2014. This opera will be Mozart's seventh production in which he assumes the musical direction at the head of the Headlines Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real, and the third in which he works side by side with Claus Guth, after Lucio Silla (2017) Y Don Giovanni (2020).

Since the reopening of the Teatro Real, Le nozze di Figaro has been featured in 5 his 25 seasons: in 1998, with Gianandrea Noseda Y Jurgen Flimm; in 2003, with Antoni Ros Marba Y Marco Arturo Marelli; in 2009, with Jesus Lopez Cobos Y Emilio Sagi, whose production was presented again in 2011 with Victor Pablo Pérez, and in 2014 with Ivor Bolton.

The scenic and dramaturgical proposal conceived by Claus Guth, which will now be seen at the Teatro Real, offers a new perspective on Mozart's masterpiece, whose wealth, complexity and depth are an inexhaustible source of interpretations.

Photography © Javier del Real | Teatro Real


He Teatro Real will offer, for the first time in Spain, a staged version of Parthenope, from Georg Friedrich handsl (1685-1759), in the iconic production of the English National Opera, from 2008, co-produced with San Francisco and Australian operas.

Under the guise of an eighteenth-century "serious opera", with his queen and princes of classical antiquity, this score, released in 1730 in London, It is "contaminated" by countless details of the "comic opera", like the frivolity of the subject, the erotic licenses of the libretto, morally ambiguous characters, or the "elasticity" of its musical structure, in which set numbers abound: two duets, a threesome, a quartet and a quintet.

The "unseemly" plot of the opera fits better in the freedom of the bufo genre.: Parthenope, founding queen of Naples, he has to choose one of his four suitors: the fiery Arsace (prince of corinth), shy Armindo (prince of wheels), the warrior Emilio (prince of cuma) or the seductive Eurimene, which is actually Rosmira, Arsace's jilted ex-partner, who disguises himself as a man to take revenge on his former lover whom he still loves and to compete with him in the seduction of the queen.

Arsace and Armindo are interpreted by the “feminine” voices of two countertenors, and Eurimene is Rosmira disguised as a man, who seeks the favors of another woman. Cross-dressing, sexual freedom and gender fluidity ”from the opera, whose engine is love and desire, fit perfectly with "surrealism and its vision of the erotic nature of the psyche", according to the stage manager Christopher Alden.

With the complicity of the set designer Andrew Lieberman and the costume designer Jon Morrell, the characters parade through the art deco mansion of Parténope, in full effervescence of the avant-garde, with winks to some of its protagonists, like Man Ray or André Breton. In that space of freedom, vice, creativity, glamor and pleasure, Parthenope reigns as a muse, from his bedroom, object of desire of his court of admirers.

In the Real two distributions will alternate, with prominent baroque singers, in the interpretation of the six characters of the opera, what, together, they will also assume the parts of the choir, as it usually happens in Handel's operas.

The sopranos will bring the score to life Brenda Rae Y Sabina Puértolas (Parthenope); the mezzosopranos Teresa Iervolino Y Daniela Mack (Rosmira); countertenor Iestyn Davies Y Franco Fagioli (Arsace), Y Anthony Roth Costanzo Y Christopher Lowrey (Armindo); the tenors Jeremy Ovenden Y Juan Sancho (Emilio) and baritones Nikolay Borchev Y Gabriel Bermúdez (Ormonte), Next to the Head of the Royal Theatre Orchestra, under the musical direction of Ivor Bolton, who will be responsible, as well, from the accompaniments to the harpsichord.

The premiere of Parténope, the Georg Friedrich Handel, at the Theatre Royal, will be added to the ten titles of this composer that have been offered since its reopening: Julius Caesar (2002), Ariodante (2007 Y 2018), Tamerlano (2008), The triumph of time and disappointment (2008), Tolomeo, King of Egypt (2009), Theodora (2009), Agrippina (2009 Y 2019), Alcina (2015) and Rodelinda (2017).

Parténope is unique and heterodox within Handel's operatic corpus. Perhaps today's viewer has a greater capacity to enjoy and understand the genius of this score., whose essence and values ​​enhance the ingenious dramaturgy of Christopher Alden and the mastery, musicality and delivery by Ivor Bolton.

©Javier del Real | Teatro Real





Don Giovanni
Wolfgang A. Mozart (1756-1794)
Playful drama en dos actos
Libretto by Lorenzo Da Ponte, based on the Trickster of Seville (1616) de Tirso de Molina y en el libreto de Giovanni Bertati for the opera Don Giovanni Tenorio or the stone guest (1787)
Production of the Berlin Staatsoper, from Salzburger Festpiele
Teatro Real, Madrid 29 December 2020
D. musical: Ivor Bolton
D. scene: Claus Guth
Responsible for the replacement: Julia Burbach
illuminator: Olaf winter
Dramaturgy: Ronny Dietrich
Choreographers: Ramses Sigl
D. choir: André Máspero
interpreters: Adrian Eröd, Goran Juric, Adela Zaharia, Airam Hernandez, Federica Lombardi, Marco Mimica, Cody Quattlebaum, Marina Monzó
Titulares Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real Personally I have to say that I have had bad luck with the Don Giovanni that I have attended. So unlucky I think this is the best I've ever seen. And I also have to admit that a few contradictions arise after seeing the representation. Some things I like a lot, other, less. But if you look at the whole, in all elements (which they are few) that make up this production, I can say that I left the Theater happy after having enjoyed Don Giovanni seems to have some kind of curse in Madrid, because the representations that have been made of him in recent decades have not been exactly brilliant. La de Claus Guth, which premiered in 2008 at the Salzburg Festival and now arriving at the Royal Theater, Since then he has been on stage with enough dignity. It is also the only Mozart opera that remained in the repertoire since its premiere in the Romantic period., when the rest had disappeared from the programming.There are two versions of Don Giovanni, the Prague of 1787 and Vienna in 1788, which is the one represented on this occasion, although the final sextet and the duo between Zerlina-Leporello have been dispensed with. How Mozart wrote for singers, adapted the Vienna version for the Austrian soprano Caterina Cavalieri for the role of Elvira, one of the most famous singers of the moment. He did the same with the role of Don Ottavio, which in Vienna was played by Francesco Morella, for who wrote the aria of Il mio tesoro, a tenor with more skill and facility for coloratura than Antonio Baglioni, which premiered the version in Prague.Guth has created a forest of extraordinary realism. Rotary, how could it be otherwise in the case of the German director. The forest ... that place where we hide or love each other. A place where we can feel fear, we get lost and worry, but where emotions are always strong. Claus Guth's scenography begins by altering the libretto, for the Commander mortally wounds Don Giovanni already in the overture, as a spoiler. From here we witness the agony, in real time, of a Don Giovanni who is like an animal hunted and wounded in a forest that, at turning, besides being a bit dizzy, It unveils the mysteries and corners in which the scenes take place. All this in a permanent and brilliant twilight created by Olaf Winter. There is room for a car, a bus stop or a swing. All, less a palace; neither the costumes nor the incomprehensible scenic elements accompany the immersion, like Don Giovanni's allusion to drugs and, in general, the lack of sensitivity in a work like this Ivor Bolton, that is handled very well in the Mozartian repertoire, had a somewhat uneven result this time. It was less to more, after a slightly muted overture, like most of the first part, a second came with greater musicality and refinement on the strings. The music managed to suffocate the moments in which the scenery took you out of the work. I didn't understand that James Ellis's mandolin had to be amplified. I do not know if this was the cause of the lack of neatness in its emission in an aria that, on the other hand, was cleverly lit creating one of the most sublime moments of the performance. The singers have been very balanced.. You should highlight the interpretation of Don Giovanni by Adrian Eröd, of a high interpretive level. Frivolous and hasty in his conquests while dying. Too bad your broadcast wasn't clean, it seemed like I had a problem. Cold, maybe. A character treated scenic as a poor erratic man. Nothing to do with the Don Juan that we have internalized, the Croatian Goran Jurik offers a good image of Comendador, thanks to his stage presence and his powerful bass voice in an ungrateful role, For brief I liked Adela Zaharia in her role as Donna Anna. The Romanian soprano combined sensitivity with vocal solvency and a good interpretation. She, like the rest of soloists, they had to sing while balancing on an uneven stage. Sometimes there is little thought about singers and much about unstable and unnecessary elements of the set. Nor was Federica Lombardi's Donna Elvira bad., with a solid central zone and good highs that allowed him moments of brilliance. Croatian Marko Mimica's Leporello had almost more vocal prominence than Don Giovanni himself. Not so in the interpretive facet. Though truly serious voices are missed these days, Mimica fulfilled her role.

The role of Don Ottavio has been played by Airam Hernández, a cowardly character who was well portrayed by the Tenerife tenor who was also at a good level in the vocal part.

Marina Monzó's Zerlina was one of the night's satisfactions, no surprise. Next to Cody Quattlenaum's Masetto, they created a well-connected couple in the theatrical part.

Another night of opera at the Teatro Real, which is behaving like a great ship moving forward, Through thick and thin and keeping the course, in a vast ocean of ice.

Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real / Teatro Real
Videos: Teatro Real


Between days 12 Y 27 of November Royal Theatre offer 10 functions from Rusalka, from Antonin Dvorak, in a new production The Royal Theatre, co-produced with the Säschsische Staatsoper in Dresden, the Teatro Comunale Bologna, the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona and the Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía in Valencia, in which it will be presented after its premiere in Madrid.

Rusalka, premiered in Prague in 1901, was the penultimate of eleven operas by Antonin Dvorak (1841-1904) Y, definitely, the most famous of all those he composed.

the libretto, of the poet and playwright Jaroslav Kvapil, is based on the Central European legend that inspired the book Undine (1811) from Friedrich de la Motte Fouqué and in the story The little Mermaid (1837) from Hans Christian Andersen, in which a water nymph decides to leave her aquatic world at any cost to pursue the prince she loves.

the score, in which the influence of Wagner and the currents of Central European musical nationalism subtly beat, different intertwines leitmotiv and bohemian folklore themes, with a different orchestration to represent the world of nature and spirits -with greater harmonic richness and a diaphanous and delicate timbral palette- and the world of men, with a more conventional and obscure instrumentation.

The stage manager Christof Loy bridges these two seemingly irreconcilable universes, delving into feelings, passions, wishes and contradictions of the characters, what, in a ghostly atmosphere, they go from life to stage, in a production that is a profound tribute to theater as a territory of catharsis and sublimation of emotions.

The Kingdom of Waters -with Rusalka, on the author Padre Vodník, the seasoned sorceress Ježibaba (turned into his mother) and the nymphs, her sisters- hides complex and conflictive relationships between the characters that, in Loy's conception, they transform into a strange and forgotten theater family with a glorious past, whose members, like specters, they live on nostalgic memories, but also illusions. And in that closed space, decadent and evocative conceived by the set designer Johannes Leiacker, with lighting of Bernd Purkrabek and wardrobe Ursula Renzenbrink, everything moves with the dream of a lame dancer in love, who aspires to reach heaven with his pointe shoes and the transforming power of love.

In perfect harmony with this psychological view of the characters in Rusalka, Ivor Bolton, musical director of the Royal Theater, will be in charge of two select casts in which they will alternate, in the lead roles, the sopranos Asmik Grigorian Y Olesya Golovneva (Rusalka); tenors Eric Cutler Y David Butt Philip (Prince); las sopranos Karita Mattila Y Rebecca von Lipinski (The foreign princess); the short ones Maxim Kuzmin-Karavaev Y Andreas Bauer Kanabas (Sergeant) and mezzosopranos Katarina Dalayman Y Okka from the Damerau (Jezibaba).

He Choir and the Titulares Orchestra of the Royal Theater they will perform this opera for the first time, who returns to the stage of the Real after 96 years of absence and about to meet the 120 anniversary of its creation.


Of the 15 October to 17 from December | International Institute

Film Series: at the end of the years 40 and during 50 twentieth century, producers, directors, scriptwriters, actors, Hollywood musicians were the subject of a spectacular persecution that deeply affected the film industry. This cycle, with films in English subtitled in Spanish, collect some titles that suffered that witch hunt.

– November sessions: One day in New York (5/11), The concrete jungle (12/11), Alone in the face of danger (19/11), Holidays in Rome (26/11).

– December sessions: The law of silence (3/12), Fugitives (10/12), Spartacus (17/12).

Free activity upon registration in

5 of November, 20:15 hours | Teatro Real, Sala Gayarre

approaches: meeting with Ivor Bolton (musical director of Rusalka), Christof Loy (stage director of Rusalka), Pablo Rodriguez (musicologist and critic of El País) and Joan Matabosch (artistic director of the Teatro Real).

Interpretation of songs from the cycle Love Songs Op. 83, by Antonin Dvořák, by soprano Juliette Mars and pianist Mack Sawyer.

Face-to-face assistance with limited capacity and live broadcast by the Youtube channel of the Royal Theater.

10 of November, 19:00 h. | Czech Culture Center

Conference in streaming: American musicologist David R. Beveridge, specialized in the work and life of Dvořak, will offer a conference via Zoom on the Czech composer, his origins, his sources of inspiration and his influence on music.
Free activity at

From the 13 of November, 19:00 hours | National Museum of Decorative Arts

Storytelling in streaming: under the title Moon water, the public from 9 years you can celebrate your particular Friday 13 and enjoy a tale with ghosts, a swamp of deep and mysterious waters and a prince in love with a magical girl. A story of impossible loves and witches.
Free activity in and on his YouTube channel.

14 Y 22 of November, 12:00 Y 16:00 h. | Routes of the Emperor Charles V

Guided tour: the palace of the Counts of Osorno in Pasarón de la Vera (Cáceres) opens its doors exclusively for, in groups of six, know the legend that encloses its walls and that, like in Rusalka, tells a story of impossible loves.
Free activity upon registration. More information

15 of November, to 12:00 hours | Teatro Real, Great room

At 120 anniversary of the premiere of Rusalka, the soloists of the Titular Orchestra of the Royal Theater will offer a program around Antonín Dvořák.


Antonin Dvorak: Terzetto and Do Mayor. 74 for violins and viola

Bedrich Smetana: String Quartet n ° 1

Josef Suk: Meditation op. 35 for string quartet

Antonin Dvorak: String Quartet n ° 13

16 of November, 19.00 hours | International Institute

Literary gathering: Alix E. Harrow, author of A Witch’s Guide to Escape: A Practical Compendium of Portal Fantasies, with which he won the Hugo Award, will offer a lively talk in English via Zoom to talk about witchcraft, libraries and books in which the public can freely participate.
Free activity upon registration in

21 of November, 17:00 hours | Naval museum

Storytelling: the renovated Naval Museum opens its doors to host a fun and unique activity for children between 3 Y 7 years, in which the story of the nymph Rusalka will be told. The act, that will be face-to-face, it has a capacity limited to five people.
Free activity upon registration in

22 of November, 12:00 hours | Museum of Romanticism

Storytelling: the expert narrator Alba Muñoz will give voice to the story of The little Mermaid, by Hans Christian Andersen, a masterpiece from which Dvořak was inspired to compose his opera Rusalka. An activity for children from 8 years that will transport you to a magical world.
Free activity with prior reservation at

23 of November, 19:00 hours | International Institute

Conference in streaming: the writer Alix E. Harrow will meet virtually with the public to discuss witchcraft and the female vote, main themes of his new novel The Once and Future Witches. The act, what will be in english, will address the fight for witches' rights in the suffrage movement.
Free activity upon registration in

25 of November, 17:30 hours | National Archaeological Museum

Guided tour: a unique and exclusive tour to know the halls of Greece from the hand of a specialized guide, where the attending public can discover the many mermaids, nymphs and other fantastic beings that populate some of the pieces in the museum's collection.
Free activity with reservation of place. More information

29 of November, to 12:00 and to the 17:00 hours | Teatro Real, Sala Gayarre

Everyone to the Gayarre!: music workshops for the whole family, direction and presentation of Fernando Palacios. Story of a mermaid.

A nymph bewitches with her songs whoever approaches the lake.

Photograph: Javier del Real

They offer 8 functions of the opera, between 17 and the 27 of March, in a new production of Teatro Real, reaffirming its commitment to recovery of the Spanish operatic heritage.

Achilles in Skyros It premiered at the Coliseum in the Buen Retiro in Madrid 1744 to celebrate the marriage of the Infanta María Teresa Rafaela of Spain, daughter of Philip V, the Dauphin Louis de France, son of Louis XV.

In his staging of the opera, Mariame Clement -That he directed before Plataea, Rameau, written to celebrate the same wedding- recreates the premiere of Achilles in Skyros in Madrid through the Spanish Infanta, acquires a great dramaturgical role in production.

The scenery and costumes of Julia Hansen They evoke the freedom and fantasy of the Baroque and the dreamy atmosphere of the mythological universe.

The musical director of the Royal Theater, Ivor Bolton, will be in front of of the casts, of the Titular Choir of the Royal Theater and of the Orquesta Barroca de Sevilla, in addition to playing the harpsichord.

The original score of the opera, conserved in the Conde Duque de Madrid Municipal Historical Library, was recovered by the Complutense Institute of Musical Sciences (ICCMU), in modern edition by the musicologist Alvaro Torrente.

Achilles in Skyros will be broadcast live by ARTE TV he 27 of March, to 20.00 hours, in an audiovisual co-production by François Roussillon, Arte TV, Mezzo y RTVE. Later the production will be edited on DVD and will be available in the catalog of My Opera Player, audiovisual platform of the Teatro Real.

He 25 March at 20.00 hours the opera will be broadcast on a delayed basis for EBU countries, European Broadcasting Union, and the 28 of March, to 20.00 hours, for all of Spain by Classical Radio, the RNE.

Around Achilles in Skyros a large number of Parallel activities at the Theatre Royal, Juan March Foundation, Prado Museum, National Archaeological Museum, National Museum of Sculpture of Valladolid, National Library, Circulo de Bellas Artes, French Institute of Madrid, Vila romana La Olmeda and SGAE Foundation.

Coinciding with the opera performances, Royal Theater will host, of the 25 al 27 of March, he International Congress of Musicology Words of Metastasio, which will bring together international philologists and musicologists who are experts in the legacy of the librettist.

Functions Achilles in Skyros are sponsored by the Board of Friends of the Teatro Real.


Historical context

In eighteenth-century Europe, religious wars had given way to purely territorial disputes, with constant treaties, alliances and pacts, many of them sealed with royal marriages. In this context, the wedding of the Infanta María Teresa Rafaela of Spain ─daughter of Felipe V and Isabel de Farnesio─ with the dolphin Luis de Francia is framed, son of Louis XV, which was held by proxy in Madrid, he 18 December 1744, and in person at Versailles, he 23 February 1745, and with which it was intended to appease the tense relations between both countries.

To celebrate the marriage of the future kings of France - who would not finally reign due to the premature death of both - two works were premiered: Achilles in Skyros (Achilles in Skyros), from Francesco Brusa he 8 December 1744, in the Coliseum of the Buen Retiro Palace in Madrid, opening the wedding festivities, in the presence of the infanta and the kings of Spain, before the girl left for France; Y Plataea (Street), from Jean-Philippe Rameau, presented at the Grand Écurie de Versailles one month after the link to the French royal family.

One year after the splendor of this wedding, The Spanish Infanta died in Paris as a result of the delivery of a girl who would die at 2 years. The dolphin of France would almost outlive him 20 years, with his second wife, although he died of tuberculosis before coming to reign.

Achilles in Skyros will be seen for the second time in Madrid, 275 years after its premiere, but today we know that the marriage that was held did not have the happy ending that crowns the opera.

Francesco Brusa (1705-1778)

Francesco Brusa, native of Piacenza and son of Charles Courcelle, French dance teacher of Isabel de Farnesio in Parma, trained and consecrated as a composer in Parma and Venice, where he premiered his first two operas. In 1733 came to Spain, years later, serving as master of the Royal Chapel for four decades. His notorious Italian influence on court life was reinforced by the presence of the famous castrato Farinelli (1705-1782), exalted singer and musical adviser of the kings throughout the more than 20 years that resided in Madrid.

Corselli's production, with a remarkable catalog of mostly religious works, accompanies the evolution of the European musical baroque of the mid-18th century, already late and sober, until connecting with classicism. Of his six well-known operas, two have, as Achilles in Skyros, libretto Pietro Metastasio (1698-1782), great friend of Farinelli what, according to musicologist Álvaro Torrente, would have intervened in the contacts with the librettist, the selection of performers and other details relating to the production of the opera.

Pietro Metastasio wrote 27 opera librettos on which they were composed about 900 sheet music throughout the 18th century. The one of Achilles in Skyros was written in 1736, in just 18 days, to celebrate the marriage of Maria Teresa of Austria, with music by the composer Antonio Caldara. The same script would be used in other 38 operas, almost all, as the de Francesco Corselli, falls into oblivion.

Achilles in Skyros, Francesco Brusa

In brackets, the tessitura of the interpreters in the production of the Teatro Real.

The opera narrates the juicy episode in the life of Achilles (Achile, countertenor, soprano tessitura), in which his mother, Aunt, decides to send him to the island of Skyros to prevent the brave and impulsive young man from participating in the Trojan war, where, according to the oracle, he will lose his life.

With the complicity and vigilance of the old man Nearco (tenor) and the unsuspecting aid of King Lycomedes (Licomede, low), Achilles hides among his daughters disguised as a woman by the name of Pirra, what allows you to know and enjoy, incognito, of the charm and pleasures of female youth. In this erotic and chameleonic cross-dressing game he hides his secret love affair with Deidamia (soprano), daughter of Lycomedes, destined to marry the young man Teagene (soprano), who in turn is in love with Pirra / Achilles.

In the middle of these hilarious tangles, whose sexual ambiguity is accentuated by tessitura, also transvestites, Singers, the mighty Ulysses arrives on the island (Ulisse, countertenor, mezzo-soprano tessitura), already warned of the situation and determined to rescue Achilles to lead the Greek army. Knowing his warlike and untimely momentum, use all tricks to seduce him: delivers an eloquent speech in which he appeals to the heroic defense of Greece, offers gifts to the king's daughters by hiding a sword for Achilles and simulates a fake attack on the awakening island, Finally, the verve of the future hero of the epic.

From that moment on the opera acquires its epic character of opera seria and Achilles leaves the youthful fervor and is debated, until the end of the work, with the great ethical questions that underlie the myth:

─ A short life with glory or long without it?

─ Blessed love or striving for an ideal?

─ Immortality in Eden or heroic death as a man?

The new production of the Teatro Real

The stage director Mariame Clement inquires about these and other issues in his original dramaturgy, presenting Achilles in Skyros to the real Infanta María Teresa Rafaela as a kind of "sentimental education", in which the characters and the successive scenes of the opera will make you reflect on your feelings, the pleasures, the ideals, homework, The doubts, fears and attributes of man and woman.

With the complicity of the set designer and costume designer Julia Hansen, who do you work with regularly, Clement places the plot of the opera in an "enchanted grotto" of rococo perfume, evoking the false ruins of eighteenth-century gardens; or the female belly, curvy and lustful of a protective mother; or the rock of an imaginary island. There lives Achilles in disguise, beardless and playful, in equal circumstances with women, and from there he will come out mature and ready to fight for his people, invested with masculinity and heroism, willing to leave his beloved after the happy wedding that concludes the opera. A path of initiation and birth of a hero and a journey of the 18th century opera from sexual freedom, abstraction and enjoyment of the primeval Baroque to gender conventions to be imposed in the following centuries.

Photograph: © Javier del Real | Teatro Real

The Titular Orchestra of the Teatro Real He has offered this afternoon at the Alfried Krupp Chamber Philharmonic Essen a concert dedicated to the Italian composer Gioacchino Rossini, in which he counted on the participation of the Australian soprano Jessica Pratt and tenor Russian Jessica Pratt, under the baton of Ivor Bolton, musical director of the Royal Theater and Artist in Residence Essen Philharmonic.

Ivor Bolton It is one of the great protagonists of the current musical season of the German city with six concerts in charge, in which he has already directed the Orchestra of the Dresden Festival, the Basel Symphony Orchestra and the Chowerk Ruhr and the Concerto Köln chamber orchestra. After the performance tonight, by the Titular Orchestra of the Teatro Real, will return to Essen next 29 May the Mozarteum Orchester Salzburg with, of which he was also principal conductor.

The public, that filled the room, it has set up to reward the musicians with a standing ovation, After enjoying a program in which arias and duets from operas were performed best known as the composer of Pesaro Semiramide, Guillermo Tell, Otello, Le Comte Ory, La Cenerentola and The Barber of Seville. The first part of the program has also included Simple Symphony, on 4 Benjamin Britten.

Two great voices have shining examples in Gala: Jessica Pratt, recognized as one of the great interpreters of Rossini time, as evidenced by his regular presence at the Festival of Pesaro, Rossini twelve papers in their repertoire, Y Dmitry Korchak, winner of the Francesc Viñas Singing Contest and the fourth prize of Operalia, whose voice is already demanded by opera houses around the world. Korchak acted replacing Xabier Anduaga, initially scheduled and canceled due to illness.

Last season, in March 2019, Titular Orchestra of the Royal Theater participated in the International Rostropovich Festival in Moscow, under the direction of Gustavo Gimeno, with violinist Leticia Moreno solo, and the previous, The Royal Theater was the main guest at the Savonlinna Festival, in celebration of the centenary of the independence of Finland, with an adaptation of the assembly I puritani, performed by Emilio Sagi, with the Choir and Orchestra of the Royal Theater Headlines, with musical direction by Evelino Pido.

Photograph: © Helena Poveda / Teatro Real

La Calisto 1

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La Calisto 7


La Calisto, venecianaLA effervescence CALISTO
Francesco Cavalli (1602-1676)
dramma per musica in a prologue and three years
Libreto de Giovanni Faustini, based on the book II
Metamorphoses (8 d.C.) Ovidio
San Apollinare premiered at the Venice Theater
28 November 1651
Premiere at the Royal Theater
Bayerische Staatsoper production Munich
Madrid 25 of March, 2019
D. musical: Ivor Bolton
D. scene: David Alden
Scenographer: Paul Steinberg
Costume designer: Buki Shiff
Illuminator: Pat Collins
choreographer: Beate Vollack
Distribution: Dominique Visse, Karina Gauvin, Monica Pods,
Luca Tittoto, Nikolay Borchev, Louise Alder, Tim Mead,
Guy de Mey, Ed Lyon, Andrea MastroniLa seventeenth-century Venice is a suitable place for divertimento, full of life, carnivalesque mocking. Always wary of Roma who came to excommunicate the Venetian authorities to consider the city a hovel of sodomizing. It is in this context that born La Calisto, work that was the great dominator of the Venetian opera, Francesco Cavalli. With great dramatic sense and wisdom in choosing the librettos, I knew how to put in this work all his artillery to exert satirical critique gaunt clerics, Roman politicians and artists. This was his peculiar way of settling accounts with ellos.Cavalli worked as Kapellmeister of San Marcos without forgetting his true passion, composition operas. He wrote more than 40 of which they have lost nearly a third. Of the 27 preserved, Callisto is the most popular since it was rescued in the years 70 by director Raymond Leppard.Cavalli should be as well known as Monteverdi or Haendel, whose works are part of the standard repertoire of all concerned teatros.Esta Italian society is reflected in the artistic and musical expressions through a clear evolution. Are the first solo, Madrigals abandoned 5 parts, texts gain in importance and should be understood by an audience that, for the first time, attending such shows paying entry. new instruments that imbue the works of a continuous basis are needed more powerful than traditional lute. a new instrument then appears with Greek mythological basis, chitarrone, It is beginning to be heard in the early and Venetian operas.

La Calisto, as a good representative of the Venetian opera, It consists of short scenes and a variety of characters and plots that occur with great fluency.

This style manages to convey, effectively and dynamics, a story with scene transitions and assemblies that makes these works have a special appeal to new audiences, accustomed to rapid movements of television and media.
Stage directors have always had some qualms about addressing Baroque works. Not easy to dramatize the long recitatives and statism of his characters. It may be the reason why some directors are entangled in impossible positions and / or surreal, creating scenery not always successful.

David Alden has devised a kind of psychedelic parade going by parading a large group of characters who are always very attractive for scenographer, gods, humans and mythological animals occur in fun filled scenes of sexuality and lasciviousness. Alden has reflected well through satiric characters, Cavalli mockery to the Roman authorities.

But the scenery is also loaded with scenic dispensable items, that they make no contribution to drama and sometimes distracts from the scenes that do not need much embellishment sterile to be understood.

Ivor Bolton put this time in front of two excellent baroque ensembles, on the one hand, the Baroque Orchestra of Seville, with some of its prominent members, Sylvan James and Elisabeth Bataller, violins; Kepa Arteche y Elena Borderías, violas; Mercedes Ruiz, cello; Ventura Rico, double bass; Simone Nill y Katja Schönwitz, Recorders; Bork-Frithjof Smith y David Gebhard, cornetos and Philip Tarr was in charge of percussion that was excessive and even annoying at times.

And on the other hand, and Monteverdi Continuo Ensemble, a group led by self Ivor Bolton, specializing in baroque operas and improvisation and created for these occasions. La Calisto involved with 4 key touched by the Bolton own, Luke Green, Roderick Shaw y Bernard Robertson; Mark Lawson, organ; Fred Jacobs, Michael Freimuth y Joachim Held, the chitarrones, instruments in the seventeenth century there was scarcely see the stage to an audience protesting the length of your rod; Friederike Heumann, Lirona and viola da gamba; Joy Smith, Cello (continuous) y Frank Coppieters, double bass (continuous).

They have also introduced some wind instruments, as natural trumpets, performed by members of the Titular del Teatro Real Orchestra Ricardo Garcia and Marcos García Vaquero, not included in the original manuscript of Cavalli and part of the update of this new critical edition prepared by Alvaro Torrente, which it has provided a solid and true basis of the text from which it was possible to carry out this work of recomposition in a work with great ability to introduce the element of improvisation.

Bolton direction in front of these sets is extraordinary. Faced with a score like this, on which he has worked in depth, instrumenting passages, shows his great knowledge and mastery of the baroque repertoire. Does a great job of connection between the different bands that get perfect pitch. His success in the leadership demonstrated by the standing ovation before the start of the second part.

It should be noted the balance of vocal ensemble. Bass Luca Tittoto, como Jupiter, She showed her acting skills, especially disguised as Diana and using the falsetto. It proved a very interesting central register. Made good partner with Mercury Nikola Borchev.

Calisto was played by British Louise Alder. A beautiful timbre well and potently projected was enough to give life to his character, something sappy and simplón.

The Endimione Tim Mead was full of tenderness in the interpretive part, He gave the public time full of lyricism and taste in singing. He made very good theater and vocal partner with Diana Monica Bacelli, which he demonstrated his mastery of the baroque.

No doubt the winner of the night was Dominique Visse. This disciple of Alfred Deller is an expert on his rope and countertenor repertoire. His voice is not the same as when founded in 78 el Ensemble Clément Janequi, but his acting ability makes up any vocal difficulty and delights the public.

The rest of the cast was high, why not have it any easier from their platforms, as in the case of Ed Lyon, interpreting Pane.

An interesting production that allows us to be optimistic to think that there is a deficit of Baroque works in our theaters. Hopefully sets an example and good public acceptance is taken into account.

Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real
Videos: Teatro Real

La Calisto

Between days 17 Y 26 of March Royal Theatre offer 9 functions from La Calisto, from Francesco Cavalli, insolently, lewd and hyperbolic Baroque opera, which will be presented for the first time in Madrid, in a production premiered at the Bavarian State Opera in 2005, answer three times at the theater and presented at the Royal Opera House in 2008, always with great success.

The prolific composer and impresario Francesco Cavalli (1602-1676) It is credited with the birth of opera in Venice and its consolidation as a popular art form, which came to fill, the mid-seventeenth century, six different theaters in the city of canals. An avid public show, fun and transgression came to the opera to enjoy the gruesome stories of its protagonists, wit stage machinery and fantasy costumes, in a world of illusion uncensored.

La Calisto It is the epitome of all this: a plot full of humor, machinations, sex, surreptitious social criticism and moral resonances; an inventive and melodious music and improvisation allows the showcasing singers; abundant scenes to encourage change of curtains, trampillas, and scenic tricks; transformismo essential games ─ Calisto is converted into a bear and then ascends to the heavens as a constellation ... ─ and a cast of fantastic characters ─dioses, semidioses, nymphs, satyrs ... ─ to display of exotic costumes.

Librettist of the opera, Giovanni Faustini (1615-1651), faithful and prolific collaborator Cavalli, who died prematurely after the premiere of the opera, articulates with wit two episodes of the extracted Greco-Roman mythology Metamorphoses from Ovid: the seduction of Calisto by the lustful young Jupiter and the forbidden love affair between Diana and the beautiful goddess shepherd efebo, Endimione.

The opera is a parody in which gods and humans face, men and women, libertines and chaste, nymphs and satyrs, moved by the desire, the passion, sex, jealousy and revenge: too human instincts which also suffer from the divinities of Arcadia. But nevertheless, beyond this sassy and bright satire, There is criticism of the censorship imposed on Galileo Galilei and moral depravity of Venetian society then, with a bittersweet subliminal message: “In the Realm of the Senses, which favors the lechery of the gods, leads to unhappiness” (Joan Matabosch, playbill article).

David Alden ─ which directs his fourth title at the Royal Theater, after Alcina (2015), Otello (2016) Y Lucia of Lammermoor (2018)─ presents the delusional world La Calisto, with winks to the viewer today, decorated in a psychedelic evocations of Paul Steinberg, with figurines inspired by the comic designed by Buki Shiff and lighting Pat Collins.

The musical director of the Royal Theater, Ivor Bolton, who directed this production at Covent Garden in London and the Bavarian State Opera, It will do so again at the Royal Theater, this time in front of Monteverdi Continuo Ensemble and of the Orquesta Barroca de Sevilla.

As it has happened in opera Idomeneo, recently presented at the Royal, Ivor Bolton will accompany the recitatives in one of the three keys that will be used at the opera.

A double cast of singers closely related to baroque repertoire will give life to the characters La Calisto: Karina Gauvin Y Rachel Kelly (Eternity / Juno), Monica Pods Y Teresa Iervolino (Fate / Diana / the fury), Luca Tittoto Y Wolfgang Schwaiger (Jupiter), Nikolay Borchev Y Maybe Borja (Mercury), Louise Alder Y Anna Devin (Calisto), Tim Mead Y Xavier Sabata (Endimione), Guy de Mey Y Francisco Vas (Linfea, Dominique Visse (The nature / Satirino / the fury), Ed Lyon Y Juan Sancho (Pane) Y Andrea Mastroni (Silvano).

Eleonora Buratto

The soprano Eleonora Buratto, a favorite maestro Riccardo Muti singers, who for a decade usually works in the most famous international stages, Elettra will in the next release of the Royal Theater: Idomeneo, King of Crete Mozart, con musical direction of Ivor Bolton and stage firm Robert Carsen. After its extraordinary success in its debut at the Royal Opera House Micaela (Carmen), and before his performance in Simon Boccanegra Verdi alongside Placido Domingo in the Wiener Staatsoper, Eleonora Buratto returns to the scene of the Madrid coliseum to play, for the first time, the princess of Argos, in love with Idamante; mozartiano role to play again in April at the Teatro Massimo of Palermo. Three years after his acclaimed Mimì (La boheme) the Gran Teatre del Liceu, next July, Mantua soprano returns to Barcelona coliseum, to debut the role of Luisa Miller in Verdi.

Considered by audiences and critics as a singer of extraordinary talent, the young Italian soprano has an extensive resume of performances in the most famous festivals and opera houses internationally renowned as the Salzburg Festival, Festival Aix-en-Provence, Ravenna Festival, the Arena di Verona, the Teatro alla Scala in Milan, the Metropolitan Opera in New York, la Lyric Opera de Chicago, la Vienna State Opera, the Royal Opera House in London, la Opera de Zurich, the Teatro San Carlo in Naples, el Teatro Opera in Rome, the Teatro Real in Madrid, Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, the Semperoper Dresden or Dutsch National Opera in Amsterdam, among others. Also active in the field concertístico, He has sung Stabat Mater Rossini with the Orchestra and Chorus of the Royal Theater in the Cathedral of Toledo, en Roma junto a la National Academy of Santa Cecilia, and the Teatro Comunale in Modena, in a tribute to his teacher Luciano Pavarotti; the Petite Messe Solennelle Rossini at the Wiener Konzerthaus and the Philharmonie Luxembourg; the symphony No. 4 Mahler, the Four last Songs and the Requiem Verdi at the Teatro San Carlo in Naples; the symphony No. 2 Mahler in the Opera Florence, and the Mass in B minor de Bach en Chicago, accompanied by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra.

Eleonora Buratto has collaborated with leading conductors such as Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Daniele Gatti, Gianandrea Noseda, Ivor Bolton, Daniel Harding, Fabio Luisi, Ottavio Dantone, Michele Mariotti or Juraj Valcuha, among others.

His upcoming engagements include his return to the Metropolitan Opera in New York and debut at the Staatsoper Berlin, in addition to performances in London, Tokyo and Amsterdam.

Only the sound remains-1

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Only the sound remains

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Only the sound remains
Kaija Saariaho (1952)
Opera in two parts
Libretto by Ernest Fenollosa and Ezra Pound, basado en Tsunemasa
and Hagaromo, two pieces of clásoco Japanese Noh.
New production of Teatro Real, coproduced with De Nationale Opera & Ballet Amsterdam, la Finnish National Opera in Helsinki, the Opéra National de Paris and the Canadian Opera Company in Toronto.
D. musical: Ivor Bolton
D. scene: Peter Sellars
scenographer: Julie Mahretu
Costume designer: Robby Dulveman
illuminator: James F. Ingalls
Sound designer: Christophe Lebreton
Sound engineers: Timo Kurkikangas, David Fishmonger
Distribution: Philippe Jaroussky, Davone Tines,
and the dancer Nora Kimball-MentzosNho means action or talent. It is the traditional Japanese form of theater. Nho integrates singing dance and poetry of subtle and elegant way extremely simple set design, where nothing changes and only appears the figure of a pine tree as the only scenic element. Nothing should distract from what is really important, the expression of human emotions.

Ernest Fenollosa, one of the most important japonólogos, He left after his death in 1908, some unpublished translations of Japanese traditional pieces Noh. American poet Ezra Pound, belonging to the Lost Generation, and staunch defender of ancient poetry put to the service of a more modern and conceptual design, He adapted two of these works translated by Fenollosa, Tsunemasa y Hagaromo, which they have been the inspirational basis of the work of the Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho.

Only the sound remains no es una ópera al uso. It is at the forefront of contemporary music, with all that this implies in terms of experimentation with sound. A conceptual treatment which emulsifies traditional elements Saariaho, as the Kantele, Finnish traditional instrument, and electronic elements to modify or amplify the sound. Saariaho creates an atmospheric music, a sound and philosophical experiment to be abandoned, something that is not always easy or possible.

As in the noh theater, the scenery of Peter Sellars, a connoisseur and admirer of Eastern minimalist currents, He has drawn an extremely simple scenario. Pine sole escenográfico elemente noh, It has been replaced here by two paintings by the artist of Ethiopian origin, Julie Mehretu.

Commissioned for this production consists of two large canvases in which she has drawn a number of brands of ink on different levels quickly give us an impression of Chinese calligraphy or Japanese. He performs his works for several months painting layer upon layer. Only the sound on remains can be seen the evolution of these layers while the work progresses, which deepens their spirituality.

The two stories that make this opera are very simple, but also deep. We speak of loss, Withdrawals and reunions. trail (Sound) it leaves in our lives that we love one day. In the first, “Always Strong”, dead in battle warrior returns as a ghost to try to touch his laud.

The second story, “Feather Mantle”, is a fisherman who finds a beautiful feather cloak owned by an angel who needs to return to heaven. The fisherman returned in exchange for contemplate a celestial dance.

The first is a dark story, anguishing. The second is a bright and captivating story. Both are performed by countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, the young spirit and angel, and bass baritone Davone Tines, priest and fisherman. For both performers Kaija Saariaho wrote these characters. The voice of Jaroussky, which he has lost some of its early Pyrotechnics but has gained in nuance and intensity, It is perfect for the supernatural characters he plays. At times his voice is distorted by computer which provides a surprising effect tímbrico.

More discreet are the vocal performance of baritone Davone Tines, but he addressed his two protagonists with solvency. In the theatrical aspect, not to impute to him statism of his characters, this lack of movement is very great taste of Sellars.

The dancer Nora Kimball-Mentzos, muse and collaborator in numerous productions of Peter Sellars, He filled the stage in the second story with a dance full of sensitivity and delicacy. During the time he is on stage, You can not help but observe.

In an elevated part of the pit are the seven musicians, a string quartet, Meta 4 Quartet, formation for Antti Tikkanen y Minna Pensola, fiddle, Atte Kilpelänen, alto, Tomas Djupsjöbacka, cello, Heikki Parviainen, percussion, Eija Kangas Beach, kantele and Camila Hoitenga, flute. Beside them the vocal quartet Theater of Voices, Trop formed by Else, soprano, iris Oja, alto, Paul Bentley-Angell. Tenor y Steffen Brunn, low. Both ensembles have long been collaborating with Kaija Saariaho. This mutual understanding and virtuosity of all get some surprising sonic results. Emit all kinds of sounds with pinpoint accuracy to the orders of an Ivor Bolton accurate and rigorous in each of its indications, creating an immersive atmospheric texture.

Perhaps these art forms require a more welcoming place, innermost. In any case, It is always a wise program new experiences that would not be possible otherwise.

Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real

Only the Sound Remains

They offer 7 functions of the opera, between 23 October and 9 of November, in a co-production Teatro Real with the National Opera & Ballet Amsterdam, the Opéra national de Paris and the Canadian Opera Company.

Peter Sellars, responsible, next to Kaija Saariaho, the genesis of the opera, He has conceived a start stylized scene, hypnotic and poetic, ritual that invites public participation.

The scenery is great Ethiopian painter Julie Mehretu, known for his abstract murals and stratified, of the Botín center He has recently offered, with great success, the most comprehensive European retrospective.

Only the Sound Remains will be performed by the same protagonist trio opened the score in 2016: countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, bass-baritone Davone Tines and dancer Nora Kimball Mentzos.

They act with the vocal quartet Theatre of Voices, the string quartet Meta4 Quartet, three Finnish musicians -Camila Hoitenga (flute), Eija Kangas Beach (Kantele, Finnish traditional instrument) y Heikki Parviainen (percussion)-, withChristophe Lebreton Y Timo Kurkikangas design and sound processing.

At the front of this chamber music ensemble will be Ivor Bolton, musical director of the Royal Theater, which we will explore a new record in its wide repertoire.

Around Only the Sound Remains They are offered, from the past 10 October, multiple cultural events at the Royal Theater, International Institute, Student Residence and Museum of Decorative Arts.

Classical Radio, the RNE, will broadcast delayed Only the Sound Remains, date yet to be determined.

Functions Only the Sound Remains They are sponsored by the BBVA Foundation.

The next 23 October opens in Spain Only the Sound Remains, of the Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho (Helsinki, 1955), commissioned and co-produced by the Teatro Real together with the national Opera & Ballet Amsterdam, the Finnish National Opera, the Paris Opera and the Canadian Opera Company.

The world premiere of the opera ─with stage direction by Peter Sellars, and starring the countertenor Philippe Jaroussky, bass-baritone Davone Tines and dancer Nora Kimball Mentzos took place in Amsterdam on 15 March 2016. Later it was presented in Helsinki (April 2017) and in paris (January 2018), always with an excellent reception from the public and international critics.

The opera is based on two evocative tales that he translated Ezra Pound (1885-1972), taken from the collection of oriental stories written by the poet and japonologist of Spanish descent Ernest Francisco Fenollosa (1853-1908) departing from japanese noh theater.

In the first story, Always Strong (Always strong), a young warrior and virtuous lute player, heroically killed on the battlefield, reappears a haunted ghost, unable to play his beautiful instrument as once; In a second, Feather Mantle (The feather cloak), a fisherman finds a dazzling cape of feathers that he is only willing to give back to the angel who owns it, if he dances his heavenly dance.

The rich sound palette of Kaija Sariaaho, of surprising timbral textures, floating harmonies and a refined use of electronic sound processing, gives both stories a cosmic and mysterious atmosphere, in which the plot, like an allegory, dissolves into a kind of metaphysical celebration.

The two stories, independent themes, but symmetrical scaffolding, inquire about our relationship with the supernatural, with intangible beings and universes, with a spiritual world increasingly distant from physical reality, material and fast that catches us. In this forward flight Peter Sellars vindicates opera as a symbolic bridge to that ‘other side’, a magical journey with the participation, almost ritual, of the public.

Philippe Jaroussky, protagonist of the two stories that make up the opera, returns to the Royal Theater after his performances in Jealousy even of the air kills by Juan Hidalgo (2000), The Coronation of Poppea de Claudio Monteverdi (2010), and two concerts: one dedicated to Händel ─Fireworks of a castrato (2011)─ and another, to Vivaldi (2014).

In Only the Sound Remains his voice reaches almost superhuman registers and timbres, due to the electroacoustic treatment conceived by Kaija Saariaho, who wrote the papers especially for him. Beside, two african american artists: the dancer Nora Kimball Mentzos, that unfolds his character, and bass-baritone Davone Tines, frequent collaborator of the composer.

Together with them the vocal quartet Theatre of Voices –Else Torp, iris Oja, Paul Bentley-Angell y Steffen Bruun─, the string quartet Meta4 Quartet ─Antti Tikkanen, Minna Pensola, Atte Kilpeläinen and Tomas Djupsjöbacka─ and three Finnish instrumentalists: Heikki Parviainen (percussion), Camila Hoitenga (flute) Y Eija Kangas Beach (Kantele, traditional Finnish instrument similar to the zither).

At the front of this chamber music ensemble will be Ivor Bolton, musical director of the Royal Theater, which we will explore a new record in its wide repertoire, with the sensitivity and musicality required by the score.

In Only the Sound Remains The chorus, orchestra and solo opera that make up a traditional to a small vocal and instrumental ensemble and organic reducing acrisolado, It is acting in a spectral space framed by abstract murals Julie Mehretu ─one of the most brilliant visual artists actuales─, who gives life to the mutant and evocative lighting James F. Ingalls: a play to get carried away when the curtain falls and the world to.


Between days 12 Y 24 of April They will be offered 9 functions from Gloriana, from Benjamin Britten, in a new production of Teatro Real, in co-production with the National Opera Inglés and Vlaamse Opera (opera Flamenca) Antwerp. It will be the seventh great English opera composer presented at the Royal Theater since it reopened ─Peter Grimes (1997), The dream of a nigth of summer (2006), The rape of Lucretia (2007), Another twist (2010), Death in Venice (2014) Y Billy Budd (2016)─, In addition to children's books The Little Sweep (2005, 2006 Y 2008) Y Noah's flood (2007).

Gloriana will come to Madrid for the first time under the baton of music director of the Teatro Real, Ivor Bolton ─cuya reading Billy Budd, last year, It was unanimously aplaudida─ and stage director David McVicar, very faithful to the dramaturgy of opera. This prestigious Scottish director again demonstrate his meticulous and deep acting work, we have already seen in 2010, also with a degree of Britten ─una intimate and haunting version Another twist─ and subsequently La traviata Y Rigoletto, both of 2015.

Benjamin Britten (1913-1976) composed Gloriana to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom, who recently met 65 year reign. The solemn and pompous premiere of the opera at Covent Garden in London 8 June 1953, with the presence of the highest dignitaries of the UK and European royalty, It proved a dismal failure, since the opera portrays starkly an undignified episode of the troubled life reina Isabel I (1533-1603), torn between feelings and passions 'too human', without the heroic aura waiting for the select audience gathered for the occasion.

See the mythical 'virgin queen' Renaissance, and in old age and at the height of his reign ─en which bloomed William Shakespeare, Francis Bacon or Christopher Marlowe─ in love with the young (and married) Earl of Essex and acting with anger and defiance, or stripped of his wig in the privacy of his chambers, this meant confusion for attendees, that criticism punished mercilessly Britten, mistaking the intrinsic value of the score with the inadequacy of his subject to circumstances festive event.

After a long lethargy, and away from the social context and then, Gloriana It was gradually imposing itself in programming theaters, the musical and dramaturgical quality of the opera, alternating moments of almost Verdian operatic magnificence with scenes of intimacy, a refined orchestration full of evocations of Renaissance music ─sobre all of Purcell─, and heirs characters of Shakespearean theater.

They are just two connoisseurs of the rich British English theatrical tradition and the work of Britten responsible for directing the production that will premiere at the Royal Theater.

David McVicar Queen situated in the center of a palatial corrupt and hypocritical world, it controls with an iron, to the same extent that it is carefully guarded by subjects and courtiers, in a Europe immersed in religious strife and territorial.

Elizabeth moves in a refined and conceptual scenery Robert Jones, which emphasizes the acting work of interpreters. The rich Elizabethan costumes designed by Brigitte Reiffenstuel, inspired by paintings from the National Gallery in London, assumes an almost theatrical character. The opera will reflect well, In the scene, osmosis also transfers the music of Britten, written in the twentieth century but infused with scents and colors Renaissance.

Ivor Bolton You will be leading a double cast led by sopranos Anna Caterina Antonacci Y Alexandra Deshorties, you will be seconded by a very ensemble ─Leonardo Capalbo Y David Butt Philip (Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex), Paula Murrihy Y Hanna Hipp (Frances, Countess of Essex), Duncan Rock Y Gabriel Bermúdez (Charles Blount, Lord Mountjoy), Sophie Bevan Y Maria Miró (Penelope, Lady Rich, sister of the Earl of Essex), Leigh Melrose Y Charles Rice (Sir Robert Cecil, Council secretary), David Soar Y David Steffens (Sir Walter Raleigh, captain of the guard)─ and accompanied by the Headlines Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real and the Little Singers of JORCAM.

The premiere of Gloriana in Madrid, the next 12 of April, It will be attended by more than 250 opera professionals gathered at the Royal Theater for the first edition of the World Opera Forum, which will give this musical event a truly global projection.


February and March | Teatro Real, Parallel activities room

Exposed opera: Gloriana

9 of April, to 19.30 hours | Student's residence

Meeting with Luis Gago (music critic) and Maria Lozano (professor of literature and culture in English)

Retransmission streaming

14 of April, to 20.00 hours | Live broadcast of Gloriana

Classical Radio Live opera broadcasts in Spain and all the countries of the UER, European Broadcasting Union.

14 of April, to 12.00 hours | Teatro Real, Great room

Opera theater: projection opera Roberto Devereux, de Gaetano Donizetti, Mariela Devia and starring Gregory Kunde, with musical direction by Bruno Campanella and stage director Alessandro Talevi.

14 of April, to 12.00 Y 13.00 hours | Institute of History and Culture Naval. Naval museum

Storytellers for the whole family around the figure of Elizabeth I of England.

Free activity. Pre-registration must.

16 of April, to 18.30 hours | Institute of History and Culture Naval. Hall of the General Headquarters of the Navy

Conference: England view from Spain. Images in the distance and political reality in the second half of the sixteenth century. By Magdalena de Pazzi Pi Corrales, Professor of Modern History at the Complutense University of Madrid.

16 of April, to 11.30 hours | Institute of History and Culture Naval. Naval museum

Children workshop visit: children of 8 a 12 years will see pieces of the sixteenth century Spanish ships.

Free activity. Pre-registration must.

18 Y 25 April 9 May at 19.30 hours | Juan March Foundation

Wednesday cycles three chamber music concerts dedicated to the late works of Benjamin Britten

They can be followed live on the Canal March

25 April at 17.30 hours | Spanish Film Library, Cine Doré. Living room 1

Film series Teatro Real: Opera night

Smiles of a Summer Night, the Bergman (1955)

29 of April, to 12.00 Y 17.00 hours | Teatro Real. Sala Gayarre

All the Gayarre, workshop for family audiences: Dancing queens

Musics court of queens Elizabeth I and Elizabeth II

With the Winduquartet: Clara Cowley, Eloi Fuguet, Jornet Eva and Marcel Leal

Lucio Silla

With only 14 years, and during a tour of the then kingdoms of Italy with his father, Mozart the first serious opera premieres of his career, Mitridate, kings of Pontus. Such was the success that the young Mozart received another custom Teatro Regio Ducal in Milan, an opera to celebrate, Two years later, Winter carnivals the Lombard capital.

Lucio Silla It is a crucial work in the evolution of the musical language of Mozart. While it is retaining many of the conventions of the operas of the eighteenth century, as the role of a character followed historical and endless endless recitative arias. But nevertheless, and we find some new elements, as the orchestral accompaniment of recitatives. This new musical structure anticipates changes that will be consolidated with Idomeneo and be part of the unmistakable style of his operas more mature, as Don Giiovanni O Così fan tutte.

Mozart worked with great discipline and with little time. He had summoned the most talented singers of the moment 6 weeks of the release to begin rehearsals. As was customary at the time, the particelas They were composed thinking about the vocal characteristics of each performer, taking them to the limit of its capacity. This made it almost unfeasible than any other singer could address the role. Main reason why Lucio Silla, once released, tardase 200 years back to be displayed.

The main roles was in charge of the great tenor Archangel Cortoni, as Lucio Silla, and castrated Venancio Rauzzini, in the role of Cecilio and soprano Anne de Amicis, as Giunia. But the best proof of the genius of Mozart teen came when there were only 6 days for the premiere. The Cortoni protagonist fell ill and had to be hastily replaced by another tenor. No one dared to take on the difficulties of that paper was a mediocre singer who oratorios, scared by the difficulty of the character, He dared with. For that, Mozart had to seriously maul the score of the dictator adapting to the vocal possibilities of the singer. Although only reduce their intervention 2 arias, Mozart manages to convey the psychology of the character, complicatedly hesitant and unable to express what he feels, leaving the responsibility to express the feelings of the orchestra chair.

A theatrical scenery high voltage

For a stage director, Lucio Silla is a poisoned gift. Throughout history it has been considered an impossible work for its statism. Baroque works arouse suspicion among not a few stage directors for their arias

dacappo and the difficulty of this musical structure when providing the desired fluidity scenery. Lucio Silla is scenically as later works of Mozart, plays in themselves. The spirit of the characters have more weight than his vocalism, although this is endiablada for singers.

this opera, almost contemplative, also it has a great dramatic burden Claus Guth He has captured perfectly. It has created a stage where the pictures flow before the public with pace, beating statism with an almost cinematic continuous motion effect.

As is customary in Guth's stage development, a psychological X-ray of the characters and their feelings is presented. This journey to the introspection of the protagonists is achieved through the atmospheres, always oppressive, that describe with great accuracy the intention of the protagonists. A good direction of actors and a revolving architectural structure with underground tunnels stand out. An underworld in which dreams and nightmares unfold. It is here where the plays of light and shadow of Manfred Voss, that have been updated for the occasion by Younger Hoffmann, acquire great beauty and prominence.

The cold desolation that accompanies Lucio Silla is also successful. A room that deciphers the complex psychology of a fickle character dictator, hesitant and unpredictable. Chair appears in a room of decaying white tiles that are staining with the blood that spills. It seems to stay a butcher.

The direction of Ivor Bolton

Lucio Silla is an improper score of a teenager 16 years because of its complexity, for their maturity and being so meticulous in details. They have maintained the original arias with minor adaptations to improve tempis, which has facilitated the flow in the direction of a Ivor Bolton that continues the path marked extraordinary last season Billy Budd Y Rodelinda.

This time, and since the long overture, strikes a perfect balance between brass and strings. His reading of the work and the work done with the orchestra, taking the letter and not the music as a starting point, He gave sound vibration and precise pulse score. Especially in times when the orchestra broke in pieces the ins and outs of the main character. Recitatives are accompanied by the proper key Bolton, allowing a greater connection with the orchestra. Always attentive to detail and outstanding singers, which greatly facilitates the work, along with a set that facilitates voice projection and singing in proscenium.

A very balanced distribution

Lucio Silla requires equally vocal and dramatic qualities. And in that line are the protagonists of this production, Kurt Streit y Patricia Pertibon.

American tenor Kurt Streit, responsible for giving life to the protagonist, It is a great connoisseur of the Mozartian style and excellent Actor, something very important in this production. Lucio Silla presents a little hesitant and entity, insecure and characterless. At the end of the work, when it transformed into magnanimous and leaves the throne, a successful histrionic appears intent. Its excellent performance and compensates a voice in decline.

Patricia Petibon is pure theater. Expressiveness and personality on stage had deserved response from the public. He had a difficult time in the aria ¡Ah, when the cruel peril! where coloratura becomes impossible, but more than it offsets a large repertoire of gestures that describe the anguish of the character. The dramatic intensity of Petibon, above the vocalism, not detract neither the character nor the score, especially after improvising a wrenching passage to the end of the first part.

A Silvia Tro Santafe he had to give life to the role complex Cecilio. An almost impossible score that Valencia resolved with impeccable professionalism. His initial aria "The moment tereno", an extreme difficulties registry changes, It was resolved with a single solvency surpassed by the virtuosity. High volume voice and expressiveness, a phrase in Italian and a line of impeccable singing. The duet with Giunia was a moment of great beauty and delicacy. Mezzosopranos being one of the most prominent and valuable right now, surprising that no more presence in national settings.

María José Moreno It was another of the joys of the night. His character does not reach the vocal demands of the protagonists, but it has a treble that Granada soprano issued no muss. Cecilia's role is somewhat finicky, but his three interventions (It has been removed of its Aryan) They are bright. He brought freshness with its beautiful Mediterranean timbre and perfect diction.

The mezzo Letona Inga Kalna in his role as Lucio Cinna, a bit exaggerated masculinity of the character and was somewhat rough. Sound good volume but unsophisticated. But he knew keep up with the cast.

No doubt this has been a good start to the season in an important year for which celebrates its Teatro Real 200 anniversary. The season looks very attractive and opera is one of those places where dreams find refuge. Surrender to art.

dramma per musica in three acts
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756-1791)
Libretto by Giovanni de Gamerra
First performed at the Teatro Regio Ducal in Milan 26 December 1772
New production of Teatro Real
Headlines Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real
D. musical: Ivor Bolton
D. scene: Claus Guth
Replacement: you Buyse
Scenography and costumes: Christian Schmidt
Lighting: Manfred Voss
Dramaturgy: Ronny Dietrich
D. from the choir: Andrés Máspero
Distribution: Kurt Streit, Patricia Petibon, Silvia Tro Santafe,
Inga Kalna, María José Moreno, Kenneth Tarver

The Golden Cockerel at the Teatro Real in Madrid

Often children's stories serve to present so candid situations or unsavory characters, which they are used to provide a reflection or critical moralizing purposes.

This is the case of the story The Golden Cockerel, written by aleksandr Pushkin, inspired by the Tales of the Alhambra Washington Irving, and that the librettist Vladimir Balsky adapted so that Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov compose his fifteenth and last opera.

Rimski's initial ambiguity with the tsarist regime, it became clear rejection after the so-called Red Sunday massacre, in 1905, when the government of Tsar Nicholas II ordered the army to open fire on the citizens, including women and children, who had peacefully demonstrated to ask for better living conditions. The trauma that caused this massacre, not only did it stimulate subsequent revolutions in Russia, also mobilized many intellectuals who, as Roman, were censured for expressing their opposition to the regime through their works. This was the reason why El gallo de oro was not released until after the death of its author..

In this new production of the Teatro Real, in co-production with the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels and the Opéra National de Lorraine, its stage director, Laurent Pelly, performs a brilliant interpretation of the composer's idea in this work, turning criticism into satire to masterfully ridicule the tsarist regime, to the army and the people, that passes from the servitude of one regime to another, with disciplined docility. The successful scenography does not change anything of its fabulous character that is, definitely, which allows the work to have a powerful charge of intelligent and timeless aggressiveness. Pelly wants to convey the fear that ran through those historical moments and wants the public to make their own translation. The figurines, pelly design, contribute to give the magic and burlesque touch of the story.

The scenes unfold on what looks like a large mountain of rubble., those of the regime itself, about which the grotesque Tsar Dodon, always in pajamas, appears in a big bed, a way of the throne, from which she directs between dreams the destinies of a very little intrepid people. His inability is ridiculously reflected in a scene that shows his clumsiness in singing and dancing.. Next to him, her two sons, Zarévich Aphron and Zarévich Guidón, two simple and clumsy characters with a very good interpretation of the baritone Iurii Samoilov and the tenor Boris Rudak, respectively.

Governor Polkán, is another useless character, comfortably seated in office, of which the bass gives a good account Alexander Vinogradov.

The only character with a certain amount of authority is Amelfa, the housekeeper brought to life by the Polish mezzo-soprano Agnes Zwierko, that strengthened the character with its dark tones.

The Armenian soprano Nina Minasyan gave life to Tsarina Shemacha, owning the second act. A beautiful voice, full of agility and sensuality to play the mysterious character.

The bass Alexey Tikhomirov he was an excellent Tsar Dodon, clumsy and ridiculous. His powerful voice reminded us of those deep voices that are increasingly scarce.

Extraordinary work of the choir, both in the vocal and in the interpretive aspect. Highlight the group of noble boyars, superbly performed.

The young soprano Sara Blanch was the golden rooster from the pit. Small but important role that she bravely solved, power and better voice than some of those who were on stage.

the tenor Barry Banks played the whimsical astrologer. An interesting figure thanks to the peculiarity of his voice..

Ivor Bolton, whose work with Billy Budd is not forgotten, offers a magnificent version of this score with oriental overtones, to the taste of the time, full of bright and intimate moments. His connection and ascendancy over the orchestra is evident and the result is an undeniable solvency. He highlighted the interlude that Bolton himself interpreted after the second act, the piano, and one of the violinists in the orchestra, of the composers Efrem Zimbalist Y Fritz Kreisler, based on the opera itself.

A more than pleasant function with an interesting background that makes you think. Although Pelly himself said at a press conference: "I don't like to reduce a work to today", it is impossible not to move to the present. Examples are not lacking.

The Golden Cockerel
Nikolai Rimski-Kórsakov (1844-1908)
Opera in three acts with prologue and epilogue
Libretto by Vladimir Belsky, based on the poem The Tale of the Golden Rooster by Aleksandr Pushkin
Premiered at the Solodovnikov Theater in Moscow in 1909
D. musical: Ivor Bolton
D. scene and costume: Laurent Pelly
Scenography: Barbara de Limburg
illuminator: Joél Adam
Choreographer: Lionel hoche
Responsible for the scenic replacement: Benoit de Leersnyder
D. choir: Andrés Máspero
Distribution: Alexey Tikhomirov, Boris Bars, Iruii Samoilov, Alexander Vinogradov, Agnes Zwierko, Barry Banks, Nina Minasyan, Sara Blanch
Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real holders

Text:Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real
Video: Teatro Real


Rodelinda, one of the most beautiful operas of Händel first came to Real in what is now the season of big releases.

The London 1725 It is the most cosmopolitan city in Europe. With more than one million inhabitants and outside the conflicts that occur in the continent, enjoys a remarkable artistic activity. Händel, the greatest exponent of Italian opera in London, not only works as a composer, but also as an entrepreneur, directed at those moments the Royal Academy of Music, company dedicated to operatic activities. Years 1724 Y 25 They were the most creative activity of the composer. During these two years and at full speed, He composed three major works, Julius Caesar, Tamerlano y Rodelinda. He had to do with the virtuosity of the best singers of the time.

The main character of Rodelinda, Bertarino, She was played by the most famous castrati of the moment, Senesino. Rodelinda commissioned the great diva Francesca Cuzzioni, not very graceful and terrible actress, but with a voice and magnetism on stage that mesmerized the public. Francesco Borosino was also considered the most important tenor of the moment, He was responsible for giving life to Grimoald. It was not unusual to find tenors in the compositions of the time, and less on paperwork so extensive, but Borosino had triumphed with Tamerlano and Handel composed for him an important role.

Despite being a masterpiece, Rodelinda had a modest success at its premiere and just a few times recovered more. The difficulty of finding tenors of importance can be one of the reasons for his few performances at that time. Nowadays, Baroque seems that resists part of the standard repertoire. This may be due to the long duration of these works, since in the seventeenth and eighteenth century music was a complement to public recreational activities developed in the theaters, and "fear" of some managers scene arias and recitatives those dacappo, that put in difficulty the pace of construction. The fact is that Rodelinda has survived to this day remains a great unknown.

To remedy this absence has presented a new production of Teatro Real, in co-production with Opera Frankfurt, the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona and the Opéra de Lyon. Under the stage direction of Claus Guth, that following its architectural style, which already he gave a good account its extraordinary Parsifal, He has recreated, by the set designer Christian Schmidt, a palatial home inspired by the period in which Handel lived in London.

To unravel the complex web of Rodelinda, by the opening and by way of introduction, Guth uses a small genealogy and a silent slow-motion scene gives us enough background. The large revolving house, divided into rooms that lead to various stairs, It is the best scenario to represent the family intrigues.

Guth's approach to boost knows all important elements of the work. It provides different dimensions to dacappo ary and uses parallel action to break the static Repeats. It is here that becomes very important one of the main characters, curiously, not sing. It is the small Flavio, son of Rodelinda and Bertardio, Colombian actor who plays Fabian Augusto Gomez. It was providing the keys to work with his magnificent performance. Flavio live with all family drama intrigues and reflected through his drawings, which they are projected on stage. Live a parallel reality, only he sees, and that torments.

Ivor Bolton, still savoring the success of Billy Budd, It has reduced the size of the orchestra and has incorporated period instruments, as chitarrón at the hands of Michael Freimuth, the flute or fallopian. Very important to involve the harpsichordist David Bates, whose connection to Bolton, also the key, It was clear and full of energy. The orchestra was less to more and achieved some brilliant moments. Always outstanding singers, Bolton takes a very accurate reading score.

The protagonists of the baroque works have very different roles to those of nineteenth-century Italian opera. Rodelinda is a strong woman and heroic that has nothing to do with the delicate Italian star. The male star here is the counter, much more subtle than the gallant nineteenth. Conversely, the tenor, protagonist in Italian opera, in the Baroque is secondary.

This second cast, very Spanish, He has defended the work splendidly. Xavier Sabata, as Bertarido, perfectly fulfilled the role. But at some point it had to compete with the volume of the orchestra, his performance was inspired, especially in an emotional With rauco mormorio.

The soprano Sabina Puértolas played a brave and full sensitivity Rodelinda. It has a beautiful timbre, comprehensive and consistent fluids and sharp grew up with it as it advanced the work center. He used elegantly coloratura, for having a great facility. Out of Shadows, pianre, urne funeste and expensive mio bene were full of intent and delicacy.

The Grimoald evil has been interpreted by tenor Juan Sancho. His timbre is polished and sunny. Dramatization very well in creating a twisted and superficial at first and noblest Grimoald when he was disarmed by events. It misses a more voluminous voice. He shined in the arias of the third act.

Lidia Vinyes Curtis surprised by his fabulous stage presence. He recreated a frivolous and cunning as befits the character Eduige. It has good volume and voice recording changes with ease. Very good Real to bet on new voices have a very interesting projection Theater.

The Ununlfo countertenor Christopher Ainslie South African began unsafe but was settled to reach a good level, both the volume and quality of interpretation.

Garibaldo was played by the Spanish baritone José Antonio López. His performance was convincing and proper timbre, but the volume was excessive moments and unsophisticated.

No doubt this Rodelinda has been more successful this season, what should be an incentive to schedule more baroque works (We will not consider the past seasons Alcina). Three hours in this case have known a little.
Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real
Videos: Teatro Real

Opera in three acts
Música de Georg Handel Frirdrich
Libreto of Nicola Haym Fracesco, libretto adapted Rodelinda, regina'Longobards Pierre Corneille.
First performed at the King's Theater in London, he 13 February 1725
Premiere at the Royal Theater
Director musical: Ivor Bolton
Stage-manager: Claus Guth
Escenógrafo y costume: Christian Schmidt
illuminator: Joachim Klein
Video-Maker: Andi A Müller
Playwright: Konrad Kuhn
clavecinista: David Bates
Organist: Bernard Robertson
Chitarrón: Michael Freimuth
Distribution: Xavier Sabata, Sabina Puértolas, Juan Sancho, Curtis-Lídia Vinyes, Christopher Ainslie, José Antonio López, Fabián Gómez Augusto
Head of the Royal Theatre Orchestra

Rodelinda de Händel

The next 24 March Teatro Real rise for the first time its stage Rodelinda, opera by Georg Friedrich Händel, of nine functions will be offered, until the 5 of April, in a new production of Teatro Real, coproduction of the Frankfurt Opera, the Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona and the Opéra de Lyon.

Rodelinda, one of the titles of the German composer less frequent in the lyrical scenes of the world, and also one of the most beautiful and captivating, It will be offered at Real under the musical direction of Ivor Bolton and scenic conception Claus Guth.

The story takes place in Milan Rodelinda, in the palace of the kings of Lombardy. Rodelinda, devastated by the apparent death of her husband, King Bertarido, and fearing for life and the future of his son, it becomes a heroine full of courage and cunning to challenge Grimoald, the tyrant who has usurped the throne and harasses her to be his wife and to consolidate his power in the state.

The German stage director, Claus Guth, whose work for Parsifal last season Real received a great reception from the public, It is responsible for this new production Rodelinda, in which retells are his usual collaborator Christian Schmidt, for the preparation of scenery and costumes, leaving the development of lighting in the hands of Joachim Klein.

Guth tells the story of Rodelinda through the eyes of his son Flavio, character without a voice in the score, although some instrumental in the development of history, and places the characters within a Georgian house in the heart of English countryside. Little is witnessing events and through their dreams, looks and children's drawings, which they are projected on the walls of the house, the plot is cleared and opens the way that allows us to delve into the different psychological profiles of characters.

Rodelinda, premiered in London in 1725, It is one of the 42 serious operas composed in Italian style by Georg Friedrich Händel. In the purest Baroque style, alternating recitatives and score arias; the word, music and the skill of the singers combine to create moments of great beauty and explore ways of human emotion.

The libretto by Nicola Francesco Haym is based on an original libretto by Antonio Salvi, who is inspired by the tragedy Petharite, King of the Lombards, Pierre Corneille. At, Six characters support the development of history, six similarly dramatic weight, which it gives more coherence to the structure of the work, and here, as happened in Tamerlano, tenor's voice becomes more important.

Rodelinda It features a double cast of major international and national voices, in which the sopranos Lucy Crowe Y Sabina Puértolas They will alternate in the interpretation of fair queen lombarda. With them, countertenor Bejun Mehta Y Xavier Sabata (Bertarido) Y Lawrence Zazzo Y Christopher Ainslie (Unulfo), tenors Jeremy Ovenden Y Juan Sancho (Grimoaldo), the mezzosopranos Sonia Prina Y Curtis-Lídia Vinyes (Eduige) and low Umberto Chiummo Y José Antonio López (Garibaldo).


Rodelinda, Opera on screen

Screening of the film Brian Large (2003, 203 min.)

Adaptation of the staging by David Alden for Bayerische Staatsoper
14 of March, to 18.00 hours

Goethe Institut

street Zurbarán 21

Free admission prior registration email

Claus Guth meeting

I am meeting with the director of scene Rodelinda.

Participates journalist and writer Jesús Ruiz Mantilla

15 of March, to 14.00 hours

Goethe Institut, street Zurbarán 21

Free admission prior registration email:


Meeting with the directors and actors of Rodelinda

17 of March, to 20.15 h.

Teatro Real. Sala Gayarre

Street entrance Felipe V. Free access until full capacity

Franco Fagioli concert

Dmitri Sinkovski, concertino y director

22 of March, to 20.00 hours

Teatro Real. Living room

Everyone to the Gayarre!

The queen of the Lombards

We return to the house to see how he composes Händel

Workshop conceived and presented by Fernando Palacios

In collaboration with Sara Águeda (baroque harp)

26 of March, to 12.00 and to the 17.00 h.

Teatro Real. Sala Gayarre

Street entrance Felipe V


Billy Budd

Didficil to understand that one of the most important works of the twentieth century had not represented today in Madrid. Billy Budd, the most colorful work of Benjamin Britten, came to Teatro Real from the hand of one of the most prestigious stage directors, Deborah Warner, who has filed a perfect radiography of the intentions of a Britten dealing with subtlety one of his most recurrent themes, that duality that for him exists between good and evil.

The second revised version has been offered consisting of two acts plus a prologue and epilogue. This version was always the composer's favorite. After watching this production, without a doubt it is also our favorite.

After the Flying Dutchman, where the bow of a ship starred in the scene, we arrive at a Billy Budd in which the approach is much more evocative. The indomitable, an 18th century warship, fill the stage with ropes, ropes and water. Where the sensation of movement is permanent and sometimes real, as it happens in the last act. And is that for Deborah Warner the theater and the sea are connected, "When the boats stopped being sailing and the ropes disappeared, appeared in theaters ".

Britten it, definitely, a great composer, but above all he is one of the greatest dramatic geniuses in operatic terms. His sensitivity when it comes to capturing the depth of the human being and building characters is extraordinary, and Deborah Warner is her best performer. He has scrutinized each of the layers with which Britten has covered his characters to present them to the public as the composer designed them and without making judgments about them. The result is not a complex production, unattainable in the eyes of the beholder that some stage directors like so much, but a genius far from superficiality and loaded with just and essential elements.

With mobile platforms that delimit the spaces through complex seemingly simple scenic mechanisms. With characters that describe themselves through intimate dialogues and with a group of singers whose interpretive level is above that of their timbre, something that this time, it's almost the key to success.

The play begins when the audience has not yet finished taking their seats. The first of the three main characters appears in the prologue and epilogue, an elderly Captain Edward Fairfax See that, a modo de flashback, tells the story. This role was written by Britten for her partner, Peter Pears. And it might not be the best role for him, as it requires a more extensive and lyrical tenor voice than that possessed by Pears. Here he is played by the British Toby Spence, that builds an anguished and inconsistent character martyred for having unjustly accused an innocent. Well in its most heartbreaking and deepest arias.

The second protagonist is the young and candid Billy Budd. A sailor full of attractions that dazzles his colleagues and superiors. The character requires a baritone with some agility. Maybe not the case with Jacques Imbrailo, that gives life to the protagonist. But his dramatic ability, even athletic (he was able to freehand the rope while singing), served to offer some of the most lyrical moments of the night. His last aria before he died is like a lullaby, evocative and simple, deep draft that overwhelmed the public.

The third protagonist is the evil John Claggart. A character full of intricate edges brilliantly played by Brindley Sherratt. This British bass player defended with ease a man who was tortured and fascinated by Billy Budd, whom he managed to destroy based on lies. Has memorable scenes, in which perfectly transmits the drama of a dark individual full of contradictions.

The set designer Michael Levine has done an extraordinary job, powered by lighting Jean Kalman and the fantastic direction of actors, with more than a hundred characters on stage, all men. A boat, the Indomitable, in which a suffocating atmosphere loaded with testosterone and aggressiveness has been achieved in which female voices have not been missed. Perhaps because of the enormous emotional charge that the work possesses and the tenderness that some of its characters share, or because of the tremendous orchestral richness that the score has, with a great variety of colors in numbers and solo voices.

The choir's performance deserves a special mention, one more. Their professionalism and the quality of their voices is known and indisputable, but they still have the ability to surprise and delight. Dozens move around the stage with rhythm and ease, with a dramatic ability Essential to create the atmosphere achieved in that prison ship, to generate movement, to believe the work and so that the energy produced by the power of their voices accelerates the pulsations of the stalls.

His musical director finally appeared at the Theater Ivor Bolton, and he did it to offer a brilliant version of a work he knows well, if only by language. It is a score with a very tight writing, high density, with many ensemble details in a large orchestra in which soloists are given great prominence.

Bolton establishes a perfect communication between the pit and the stage and the result is brilliant. Go from orchestral moments of great intimacy to others characterized by intensity and orchestral power, like the moment they prepare for battle. The orchestra is also in charge of narrating some of the most important moments of the work. When Captain Vere communicates his sentence to Billy Budd, the story is entrusted to the orchestra that performs it through 34 repeating chords in which major and minor modes have an astonishing and revealing narrative effect.

The play ends almost as it began, connecting the epilogue with the prologue through the memory that Captain Vere has of history. The end is diluted and seems to want to start over in a permanent bonnet day. It's a real feeling, wanting to see again this unsurpassed Billy Budd that is, definitely, the best i've seen in this theater in a long time.
Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real
Videos: Teatro Real

Benjamin Britten (1913-1976)
Opera in two acts with libretto by Edward Morgan Foster and
Eric Crozier, based on the homonymous work by Herman Melville
New production of Teatro Real, in co-production with
Paris Opera, National Opera of
Finland (Helsinki) and the Teatro dell´Opera di Roma
D. musical: Ivor Bolton; D. scene: Deborah Warner
Scenographer: Michael Levine; Costume designer: Chloé Obolensky
illuminator: Jean Kalman; Choreographer: Kim Brandstrup
Video: Álvaro Luna; D. choir: Andrés Máspero
D. young singers: Ana González
Choir and Orchestra of the Teatro Real holders
Little Singers of the Community of Madrid
Distribution: Jacques Imbrailo, Toby Spence, Brindley Sherratt,
Thomas Oliemans, David Soar, Torben Jüngens,
Christopher Gillett, Duncan Rock, Clive Bayley,
Sam Furness, Francisco Vas, Esteve Manel, Gerardo Bullón,
Tomeu Bibiloni, Maybe Borja, Jordi Casanova, Isaac Galan.
Teatro Real in Madrid 9 February 2017