A Doña Francisquita full of contradictions
Doña Francisquita
Amadeo Vives (1871-1932)
lyrical comedy in three acts
Libretto by Federico Romero and Guillermo Fernandez-Shaw, inspired by
The discreet love of Lope de Vega. In an adaptation of Lluis Pascual.
Teatro de la Zarzuela Madrid 14 May 2019
D. musical: Oliver Diaz
D. scene: Lluis Pascual
Sets and costumes: Alejandro Andújar
Lighting: Pascal Mera
Choreography: Nuria Castejón
audiovisual design: Celeste Carrasco
Community of Madrid Orchestra Titular del Teatro
Holder Choir Teatro de la Zarzuela, Director: Antonio Fauró
Lyric Madrid Rondalla "Manuel Gil", Director: Enrique García Requena
Distribution: Sabina Puértolas, Ismael Jordi, Ana Ibarra, Vincent Was, Maria Jose Suarez,
Santos Ariño, Antonio Torres, Graciela Moncloa, Mathew Loren Crawford,
Francisco José Prado, Alicia Martinez, Francisco Javier Alonso
With the special collaboration of Lucero Tena and Gonzalo de Castro
This new production of Doña Francisquita the Teatro de la Zarzuela has surprised and puzzled me. I have not understood anything, no dialogues, just scenery, a narrator constantly distracted and interrupted me right in the most ravishing moments of the work and, but nevertheless, rarely go so stimulated representation. No, I do not understand nada.También serves to realize how disturbing it can be the absence of dialogue and stage in a work like this. Lluis Pascual says, one Bohéme can be sung in concert version by the best singers, and say nothing, or be represented by the worst, and say everything. A Doña Francisquita something happens parecido.Los three acts in which it divides the work are completely different, scenically speaking. The first is boring and confusing, the second entertaining and full of romanticism and the third, Pascual sublime.Lluis, showman like no other, He is responsible for the staging and adaptation of the text of this new version of Doña Francisquita. No easy task address, to modify, a reference work known since early childhood. And the result is truly amazing. surprise is the choice of the viewer on which side of the scale sets.

To justify the adaptation of the text, Pascual alludes to that, in their view, It is the problem of zarzuela: the script, and a way to write and interpret, which reaches years 30 and it called "costumbrismo". A theatrical style that nobody does and, which seems, They have lost the keys to their interpretation, both from the stage, and from the stalls.
The first act is the most baffling. It is a recording studio the years 30 in which the singers and chorus appear as if a concert version were. Missing scenery, that this act is fundamental to the understanding of the work. Perhaps that's why the protagonists seem to be on stage. freshness is lost in interpretation, remaining in the background. Some of the most lyrical moments of this first act lose all their brilliance, as "the song of the nightingale", played by Sabina Puértolas, which it is quite blurred.

We reached the second act, Located in a TV studio in the years 60, hand new character who tries to guide us from the beginning, the narrator. Gonzalo de Castro actor responsible for giving life to a new role, defined to try to introduce and explain the plot of the play, the lack of dialogue. De Castro has a very important role, It is brilliant at what he does, but his character does not stop cutting the pace. It appears even to interrupt the moments when he had achieved the most romantic and lyrical atmosphere. I think he was aware of it at times.

The third act brings us to a current rehearsal room and empty. With a huge screen in the background on which images of a Francisquita Doña shot projected on 1934 por His Behrent, a German director who came to Barcelona, along with other filmmakers, fleeing Nazism. The grandson of one of them, He discovered in the attic of his home in Canada, a trunk containing eight movies recorded by his grandfather. Seven of them were so damaged that could not be recovered and only one of them was saved. It was Doña Francisquita. The images are of great beauty and evocative of that old Madrid and always ready to party. The third act is the most emotional, especially, when he appeared on stage Lucero Tena to play with "his little instrument", the castanets, the fandango that after the dance troupe performed. Perhaps this has been one of the most unforgettable moments of the season.

All functions are dedicated to Alfredo Kraus in 20 anniversary of his death. With its recalled Fernando, Kraus is reopened Theater 1956 this same work.

Musical direction, by the holder Theater, Oliver Diaz, He made great efforts to match music with what was unfolding on stage. He succeeded largely, Bold leadership, sometimes somewhat excessive sound volume, but always knowing accompany the singers in this work of great peculiarities and difficult orchestral writing, that makes each of his numbers are different and with its own style. As Diaz says, "Doña Francisquita is a succession of great successes".

One of the reasons why this is special Francisquita, despite the disconnection and music scene, is the picture of singers involved in it. Ismael Jordi addresses the very difficult and extensive role of Fernando with the delicacy and determination that requires the character. His voice has gained in density and amplitude. He offered one of the most romantically lyrical moments in interpreting its Romanza "by smoke…”, for which unsuccessfully requested bis. His phrasing is embroidered with elegance and exquisite singing line is.

Sabina Puértolas created a sophisticated Francisquita without falling into whining. His character was more less, perhaps it infected by the lack of scenic references. Her voice is full of freshness and edge line smooth and shiny. His song of the nightingale remained blurred in that disturbing first act.
Dawn of Ana Ibarra was the character more personality on stage. Rotunda in the interpretation of this Beltrana whose grave could have been more intense. Next to Vincenç Esteban Cardona, duo starred in the third act. She, amply castiza and brava, while Esteve rapeaba more than declaimed.

María José Suárez has a job and some interpretive qualities that make any little character becomes big when she saw what. That made his Dona Francisca. It is a guarantee in any lyrical production.

Other warranty that provides traditionalism and personality to this Francisquita, It is the participation of Santos Ariño as Don Matias, and Antonio Torres as Lorenzo Pérez. They know how to be and say as is and zarzuela is said.

Choreography by Nuria Castejon made, They perform an almost balmy function for a public eager to connect with the work. Live images are projected body dance on the big screen, They are a remarkable plasticity and aesthetics.

All these artists, backed by the Head of Coro Teatro de la Zarzuela, focus the work and filled with references. With them and music teacher Vives, It is enough and to spare to give life to this zarzuela. No fear for our lyrical, It's too big. And the Teatro de la Zarzuela, your strength.

Text: Paloma Sanz
pictures: Javier del Real


I returned to Maruxa home, he Teatro de la Zarzuela, almost 47 years later. It was in this theater which premiered at 1914 when its composer, Amadeo Vives, He was artistic director of the Zarzuela. And back in style. Upon entering we waited for the sound of a bagpipe that is creating the right environment to hear that, by musical director, José Miguel Pérez-Sierra, "It is a great Spanish opera of his time, and even more, It is a great European opera of his time. Vives, in the wake of Puccini, used as setting folklore, but with a completely orchestration Central, between the German and French traditions ".

When Daniel Bianco, director of Teatro de la Zarzuela, He commissioned Paco Azorín, take charge of the scenery became Maruxa, This asked him to do what he wanted. Y, of course, He has done what he wanted.

With the excuse, some, that the libretto Luis Pascual Frutos It is more than regrettable, so naif passages that do not exceed the most childish tales, Azorín has been allowed to build a new story. He wanted to pay tribute to Galicia and has adorned with verses of this Maruxa Rosalia de Castro and the elegant dance and live Maria Cabeza de Vaca, who embodies the character of Galicia as a goddess. It has created an atmosphere of mystery and meigas creating a forest full gauzy curtains moving and mist on a slate floor. All it enhanced with a successful lighting Pedro Yagüe.

But the second half came and with it the "do what I want". On battery images Urquiola disaster occurred in the seventies, He came the chorus, yes, in a memorable performance, dressed in overalls volunteers who cleaned up the spilled by the Prestige oil slick. A strange mix of events linked intentionally and stuffed with a shoehorn that generated some perplexity in the public. The end result was so strange forced the new argument. Only it served to detract prominence to a work and, especially, a music that deserves all the attention.

The direction of José Miguel Pérez-Sierra is very solid. Perfect knowledge of the score and the nature of the work, He maintained the tension from start to finish and got the better of a pit that increasingly sounds more roundness and solvency.

The vocal quintet was quite balanced. This work is an extraordinary vocal demands, both technical, and in sufficient volume to rival guarantees a powerful orchestra. He was noted for his vocal qualities and his stage presence, baritone Simon Orfila, in the role of Rufo.

A high altitude also shone the pair of protagonists Maite Alberola (somewhat old-vocal volume), and as Maruxa Rodrigo Esteves, in a remarkable Pablo.

Carlos Fidalgo he played a convincing Antonio and Svetla Krasteva He replaced in the character of an indisposed Rosa Ekaterina Metlova.

Curiosa Maruxa to be missed if you want to review first hand. a version, Paco Azorín the, for music lovers of Amadeo Vives but, especially, for theater lovers.


That humans, the species to which we belong and so often it seems that is beyond good and evil, First accelerates aging and deterioration of the planet we inhabit, It is no secret. Not even news, even though the media around the world gather daily petty actions involved in this voluntary manslaughter and collective. This is the current point as bleak as part of Paco Azorín with its impressive reading 'Maruxa', opera in two acts by égloga Amadeo Vives, in a new production of Teatro de la Zarzuela which will be released next 25 from January, and that the public can participate 14 functions to 11 February.

Galicia, our Galicia, of Rosalia de Castro as present in the imaginary (most beautiful place on earth no / Galicia dream, enchanted Galicia), It is the bitter pretext that helps the stage director and set designer to conceive this painful song; this cry to the world from the abyss of a foggy cliff. "Maruxa is a corner in Galicia, Galicia is Maruxa ". A tragedy", as the creator defines: "Maruxa is a song painful to Galicia, a sort of Stabat Mater ". How would Rosalia own: "Large said land for a term always have great catastrophes."

we met, well, between the world of églogas past and present environmental tragedies. The actions of the most powerful affect the townsfolk, which usually try to live in harmony with nature. This time, the testimony dances Vives notes clutching the waist of a walking a tightrope between love and desire story.

Celebration: 'Maruxa', 46 years later
On the other hand, and one more time, the Teatro de la Zarzuela is celebrating. In this case, thanks to 'Maruxa' returns to the secular stage, in which premiered at 1914, after 46 year absence. Those two functions then also had a strong festive as they were programmed, in June 1971, to mark the centenary of the birth of Amadeo Vives. This almost half a century without raising tables theater Jovellanos Street in Madrid makes it even exceeds the expectation around the title, whose original script is signed by playwright Luis Pascual Frutos.

But the reason is not only the impact of the new installation or long absence on the stage of La Zarzuela which has raised such interest. He has also made, and largely, the whole proposal. And is not for less, as the stage direction and set design by Paco Azorín, one of the biggest names in the theatrical creation today, He joins the expertise of international José Miguel Pérez-Sierra, reference baton will head the Community of Madrid Orchestra (Titular del Teatro) and delCoro Holder Teatro de la Zarzuela, double cast for the score seems to be tailor-made and an artistic team that puts quite naturally our lyrical genre in the XXI century.

'Maruxa', He is according to the master Perez-Sierra, "It is filled with light music, yet elegant, and combines the art of lyric writing of the time, allowing these-apparently simple characters traveling on the same roads that other contemporary heroes have gone through different stages in the continent ". The play, Besides, It is full of orchestral nuances that are easy for the public, but especially difficult for interpreters.

precisely this, the difficulty of addressing the sheet music singers, has been, according to the opinion of conductor, one of the stumbling blocks that has faced 'Maruxa': "If not done more over the past century, It is because it is an extremely difficult work of cantary were very few artists able to do ". But this is not the case in, much less, because it ensures that the representations of the Teatro de la Zarzuela "We have wonderful teams that certainly the public will enjoy it immensely."

Height distributions referred to Pérez-Sierra will be composed of sopranos Maite Alberola and Susana Cordón on the role of Maruxa (young love with Pablo), baritones Rodrigo Borja Esteves and perhaps Paul's (the young lover of Maruxa), Simon Orfila low as Rufo (foreman must ensure the relationship between Rosa and Antonio), Ekaterina sopranos and Svetla Krasteva Metlova by serving as Rosa (premium Antonio, with whom he must marry to perpetuate the substantial family farm, but passionately attracted to the naive Pablo), tenors Carlos Fidalgo and Jorge Rodriguez-Norton
impersonating Antonio (cousin Rosa, who must marry, and attracted by Maruxa) and baritone Carles Pachón, recent winner of the International Competition Alfredo Kraus, as the voice of a Zagal. Joining them will alternate the scene 12 actors and dancer Maria Cabeza de Vaca, which will be the goddess Galicia. Likewise, It will ring off the voice of actress Maria Pujalte.

It is also necessary to emphasize the heterogeneous uniquely designed costumes for the occasion by Anna Güell, lighting and projections Pedro Yagüe and Pedro Chamizo respectively, with a decisive role in the development of the work, and stage movement generated by Carlos Martos.

When in 1914 Amadeo Vives assumes the artistic direction of the new Teatro de la Zarzuela, which it had been rebuilt after a fire in 1909, the premiere of the new work by the Catalan composer projects, 'Maruxa', an exceptional job in his musical production, an eclogue without speaking parts. His triumph was clamorous, Y, from there, He toured all the stages in Spain, even to New York 1919 (as happened with El Gato Montes the following year).

'Maruxa' is an example of nationalism folklorist, since all the music seems to use popular melodic themes with great ease, combining the Verismo prevailing at the time with a taste for opera and operetta that is embodied in the concept of the show and the vocal treatment of the characters. The action is continuous and different issues occur with admirable skill constructive. Is, definitely, masterfully written score in which the popular highlights in a special way. Since its premiere, 'Maruxa' has been part of the outstanding history of lyrical theater in general national, and the Teatro de la Zarzuela in

As it is usual in all stagings of Teatro de la Zarzuela, around 'Maruxa' are scheduled several activities:

On Friday 19 from January, and for the premiere, a conference that will give the philologist Concha Baeza be held at the Theater ambigú, and it will be devoted to this work of Vives (Ambigú the Teatro de la Zarzuela, 19h30).

Monday 23 from January, Paco Azorín and Jose Miguel Perez-.Sierra converse with French performing arts students and members of the National Youth Classical Theater Company, as preamble pre-rehearsal to be attended once the chatter (Teatro de la Zarzuela, 16h30 and 18h00, in collaboration with the National Classical Theater Company).

Monday 29 January at 19h30, Perez-Sierra Maestro will star, Ambigú in the Teatro de la Zarzuela, a meeting aimed at students in conducting and students from various musical disciplines.

Monday 5 February at 19h30, Paco Azorín will meet with students of different branches of the performing arts, design or cinematography at the main hall of the theater. Daniel Bianco submit, director of Teatro de la Zarzuela.
All meetings will be invited users Youth Card Theater, which they are already close 700.

The white cat

With particular interest the audience expected for months set assembly 'Free Education', made of Gerónimo Giménez and premiered at the Teatro Eslava in Madrid 1901, Y 'The white cat', created by Giménez and Amadeo Vives, and presented at the Comedy Theater in the capital 1905. He Teatro de la Zarzuela will house both jewelry small forms during 17 functions, of the 6 al 28 of May, in a show conceived as a unique and indivisible proposal. Son Many inducements, and among them stands, undoubtedly, he Tipping scenic and aesthetic this Free version of Enrique Viana, who also signs the stage direction, from the to own theater space.

The six hundred patio chairs have been removed and instead It is installed scenario: a large circumference with mirror floor, what, among many other amazing effects, even it manages to turn the majestic lamp in a protagonist of the work. And where you have then gone public? As well as the boxes of the different floors, respectable occupies no less than the real scenario Theater. For that, in that sacred place where they have acted García Lorca or María Callas, some steps have been installed that will house more than 200 people.

Teacher Manuel Coves will be in charge of the musical direction this, in the words of Viana own, "Comic nonsense lirico in an act". He will lead the Holder Choir Teatro de la Zarzuela and of the Community of Madrid Orchestra (Titular del Teatro), to occupy a pit unconventional located in the area of ​​the room where precisely is the main gateway to public.

He cast is coral and it is composed of great talents of the song, the performance and both at once such as mezzo Cristina Faus, singer Roko, the actress cross Beitia, mezzosoprano María José Suárez, tenor and actor Ángel Ruiz, baritone Axier Sánchez, the actor José Luis Martínez and actors and singers Iñaki Maruri Y fake Santamarina. A body 20 dancers Full cast.

"Crazy" stage

For this "crazy" stage, production also has Daniel Bianco scenery -in which is his first artwork to the coliseum signing since he took charge of his direction, Pepe Corzo wardrobe, Albert Faura lighting Y choreography by Nuria Castejón.

Enrique Viana explains why his version, in which, naturally, They remain in full each and every one of the musical numbers, but whose history ("just one, and not a double program ") It is radically different: "Both (the original) They are peppered with jokes incomprehensible to the public today and some may offend particularly feminine ".

For this reason, the author considered "Both the plot and the text had to change root", and for this he spent 'free education' serving 'White Kitten' and rewrote the first completely leaving the second plot and characters with some scenes from the original judged "sympathetic and harmless". "As a result of these considerations It was this long piece that respects each note Gimenez and each letter of his singable”, explains Viana. Singable written by scriptwriters Guillermo Perrín, Miguel de Palacios, Joseph Jackson Veyán and Jacinto Capella.

Everything is ready for this "nonsense lyrical comic one-act" rebaptized: " 'Free teaching and white cat', or 'Come Nah to spend the afternoon ' ", with which the Teatro de la Zarzuela reinvents.

the villainess

Thirty-three years have passed since the last performance of the villainess at Teatro de la Zarzuela. And it not explained very well that much time has elapsed in the case of a work of so much substance in the genre boy. And even less is understood if we take into account that the music belongs to the teacher Amadeo Vives, and that is based on the work Peribáñez and the Commander of Ocaña, from Lope de Vega.

It is therefore a work that has all the elements to undertake a plan more ambitious than a zarzuela. But maestro Vives remained halfway through that Spanish operatic dream. And not for lack of quality in the score, quality has, and a lot.

She is such a villain, beautifully made, contains some moments of delicate lyricism that the master Miguel Ángel Gómez Martínez manages to extract from an Orchestra to which the work is something great. Even so, the orchestra sounded homogeneous and more elaborate than on other occasions.

The difficulty and demands of this work for the main roles are noticed from the first moment. Important voices are necessary to cope with a well-elaborated score with great vocal and dramaturgical demands.. The Theater has counted on this occasion with two castings. Without detracting from the first, maybe it was the second cash who has been most successful in the general reading of the work. the soprano Maite Alberola, with a round and voluminous voice, He knew how to fill the character of Casilda with the Castilian character of this prudent woman. He offered some moments of great beauty interpreting the romance "The brown cloth cape", or his beautiful duet with Peribáñez.

baritone César San Martín played a static, but full of nobility, Peribáñez. He participated with elegance and feeling in the most beautiful duets with Casilda.

The Don Fadrique of Andeka Gorrotxategi it was a big surprise. This young Biscayan tenor has a vigorous instrument, of attractive timbre and taste in interpretation.

The rest of the tablets composed of Rubén Amoretti, Manuel Mas, Javier Tomé, Ricardo Muniz, Carlos Lorenzo, Rodrigo Garcia, Roman Fernández-Cañadas, Daniel Huerta Y Francisco Jose Pardo, maintained a high level that rounded a height cast.

The theater choir, well stamped and pasted, had a relevant performance, becoming a main character.

Also noteworthy is the corps de ballet that completed the simple but beautiful scenography of Natalia Menéndez. With the evocative field of spikes as the protagonist throughout the work. Very successful lighting of Juan Gomez Cornejo, creating different atmospheres with the same scenic elements. And a good direction of actors who made more than seventy people unfold on stage in a coordinated and graceful way.

We must thank the bravery and effort of the Teatro de la Zarzuela offering such a high-level work in this ambitious season. Great evenings of good music are expected.

the villainess

The Teatro de la Zarzuela live a particularly emotional night next Friday 27 from January Thanks to the Recovery zarzuela 'The villainess' Amadeo Vives, which will resound after more than 30 years after his last performance In this stage. A curious data, if one considers that it is one of the most emblematic titles of Teatro de la Zarzuela throughout the twentieth century. the case is also given that this work, with libretto Federico Romero and Guillermo Fernandez-Shaw -based drama 'Peribáñez and the Commander of Ocaña' of Lope de Vega, will meet in October 90 years after its premiere. Now, almost a century after that distant night of extraordinary success, thirteen functions are available from the 27 January to 12 February.

The assembly is a new production Coliseum Street Jovellanos, and in this work of historical reparation it has just two big names in theater and music. A) Yes, the staging is signed by Natalia Menéndez, and Master Miguel Ángel Gómez Martínez will assume musical direction in front of the Community of Madrid Orchestra (Titular del Teatro), of the Holder Choir Teatro de la Zarzuela and a full cast of big names of our lyric.

The cast is headed in the role of Casilda by soprano Nicola Beller Carbone, singer common in best opera houses in the world, and for him tenor Jorge de León, one of our most privileged voices, in the role of Don Fadrique, Comendador. The Canarian singer arrives in the direct Zarzuela Vienna State Opera, where he played Macbeth Macduff, theater will return to star in 'Tosca' in April, and that same month he will fly to New York to get into the role of Radames in 'Aida' in the Metropolitan.

The third player in contention is the recognized baritone Angel Ódena, now adds to its extensive international career this villain Peribáñez, that is manipulated by the Commander Don Fadrique for the favors of his new bride Casilda.

The soprano Maite Alberola and the Andeka tenor Gorrotxategi, also assume the role of Casilda and Don Fadrique, Meanwhile he Baritone César San Martín It will also get into the skin of Peribáñez. The cast is completed by the soprano Milagros Martín, that will Juana Antonia, the mezzo-soprano Sandra Ferrandez, which will act as Blasa, he Ruben Amoretti under which it has the dual role of personifying the Jewish David and King, he baritone Manuel Mas, who will sing Roque, and the tenors Javier Tomé and Ricardo Muñiz, they interpreted to Olmedo and Michelangelo. He actor Carlos Lorenzo He will play the lazarillo Olmedo.

They will develop the drama that because of abuse of the commander were coming over the newlyweds Casilda and Peribáñez, and they sing between wheat fields and skies of Castile.

This magical effect has been commissioned Boni set designer Nicholas with the close complicity Maria Araujo, the costumes, and Juan Gómez-Cornejo (AAI), faithful creator, as Castilian is, the exact light that require these places so often evoked by writers and poets.

Also involved in the production 11 dancers which choreography He has devised Monica Runde.

'The villain' is a clear tribute to Lope de Vega, as recognized Natalia Menéndez, who defines it as "tragicomedy that deals with the abuse of power. A possible challenge against injustice, where vice, violence and tyranny are punished, and virtue, honesty and dignity get their reward ". As for the music that envelops the drama, the stage director says Amadeo Vives "Combines the traditional and popular background with elaborate melody, transits into them without fear, forcefully, own artistic thinking which prevailed in the early twentieth century ", and this adds that Perhaps most remarkable and latent, is "the joy that prevails in its musical composition. Betting on Love ".


He Teatro de la Zarzuela will offer next Wednesday, day 23 from December, to 20 h. traditional Christmas Concert, this time with a particular format that we hope will be of great interest to the public.

In this concert we will have the opportunity to delve into two zarzuelas as delicious as rarely performed: flamingos Y Good fortune both with music Amadeo Vives and acclimated in Madrid. The first is based sainete of Arniches and the second is developed in the courtly Madrid of the early seventeenth century that portrays Cervantes in the Gypsy Girl, work which is inspired.

Two actresses will call us, semi-staged version the arguments on which its delicious musical numbers fall.

This concert is also a tribute to the talent of Carlos and Guillermo Fernandez-Shaw, coauthors of the respective books, the occasion of 50 anniversary of the death of the latter.

The musical direction will be borne by Christopher Soler and Javier dramaturgy of God.