The new Opera di Roma Summer 2016 Season
Rossini, Verdi, Puccini, Nureyev and five “extra” events in a single programme
A new production of Verdi’s Nabucco, filmed performances of Madama Butterfly and The Barber of Seville and a Serata Nureyev devoted to three ballets choreographed by this famous Russian artiste, not to mention five “Extra” events starring Roberto Bolle, Lang Lang, Lionel Richie, Neil Young and 2Cellos: this is the rich programme for the Summer 2016 season at the Terme di Caracalla, from 22 June to 10 August. No fewer than 25 evenings of top class entertainment. A challenging programme that is expected to repeat, and perhaps even exceed, the excellent results of the 2015 Caracalla Season, which attracted over seventy-two thousand spectators and banked 3 million 700 thousand euros.
The season will open with a Serata Nureyev , featuring the Principal Dancers, Soloists and the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma’s own Corps de Ballet. Special guest: the international étoile Friedemann Vogel, Principal Dancer of the Stuttgart Ballet, accompanied by the Theatre’s principal dancers Alessandra Amato and Rebecca Bianchi.
An evening dedicated to the choreography of Rudolf Nureyev (1938-1993), who is also remembered for giving a new twist to some of the greatest classical masterpieces, as well as being a famous ballet dancer, whose virtuosity and extraordinary interpretation has ensured his place in the history of world ballet. Fascinated by the works of the French choreographer Marius Petipa (1818-1910), over the course of his career Nureyev restaged all his ballets.
The evening’s program will consist of three extracts from famous ballets: La Bayadère, Swan Lake and Raymonda. More precisely, Act III of La Bayadère; “La Polonaise” (Act I) and the “pas de trois” of the Black Swan (Act III) from Swan Lake, both revived by Patricia Ruanne, dance master of the Nureyev Repertory. The evening’s entertainment will end with Act III of Raymonda, by Patricia Ruanne and Frédéric Jahn. While the last of these extracts has already been included in the “Great Choreographers” programme at the Teatro Costanzi (26 February to 2 March 2016), the other two will represent a first for the Teatro dell’Opera’s corps de ballet, having never been presented by them before.
Rudolf Nureyev first staged Act III of Raymonda for the Royal Ballet in 1964; this was also the first ballet he presented at the Opéra de Paris in 1983. Also in 1964 he staged Swan Lake at the Wiener Staatsoper and again in 1984 at the Opéra de Paris. In 1974 he presented his version of “Acte des Ombres” from La Bayadère at the Opéra de Paris and the full version in 1992, a few months before his death.
The operas this year are all by Italy’s most famous nineteenth-century composers. Three operas that are sure to attract fans and the many tourists in Rome.
First, a new staging of Verdi’s Nabucco by Federico Grazzini, a young director with an already interesting curriculum vitae. This will be the first time he has worked with the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma. As well as providing a rare opportunity for an emerging artist, this decision is also a clear indication of the Theatre’s interest in young talents (as is amply demonstrated by the “Fabbrica” Young Artist Programme, recently presented to the press and now well underway). The Teatro dell’Opera Orchestra will be conducted by John Fiore and, on the last night, by Carlo Donadio. There will be seven performances of Nabucco, during the period 9 July to 9 August.
“Rossini in Rome – 200 years”, a show that enjoyed great success in Summer 2014 returns to Caracalla on 18 July (with five repeat performances, the last being on Wednesday, 10 August): The Barber of Seville directed by Lorenzo Mariani, with a Hollywood musical setting and reminiscent of the silent films of the Twenties and Thirties. Conducted by Yves Abel, it will star, among others, Teresa Iervolino, Mikhail Korobeinikov and Eleonora de la Peña, three much applauded artistes at the recent edition in February at the Teatro Costanzi.
The third opera this season will be Puccini’s Madama Butterfly. Again conducted by Yves Abel, it will be directed by Àlex Ollé de la Fura dels Baus. This opera captivated audiences last summer with its fantastic Far East setting and very evocative props and scenery. Returning in the role of Cio Cio San, the Lithuanian soprano Asmik Grigorian.
After the great success last summer, the 2016 Caracalla Summer Season will continue to provide “Lezioni di opera” (opera lessons), taught by Maestro Giovanni Bietti.
THE EXTRA EVENTS
Appearing for the very first time at Caracalla, the Chinese pianist Lang Lang will perform in concert on Sunday, 3 July. This pianist manages to attract many of the younger generation to classical music by projecting a genre (often viewed as unattractive) towards the sphere of pop culture, mass audiences and the star system. Accustomed to concerts in large venues around the world fills with tens of thousands of his fans, Lang Lang is a truly unique figure thanks to his ability to blend East and West, “high” music and refined virtuosity, with a style that allows him to reach a wider audience.
There are two further not-to-be-missed events for those who enjoy the Caracalla Season not just in terms of opera and ballet: Lionel Richie, marking his return to Italy in 2016, will perform on the Teatro dell’Opera’s summer stage on Thursday, 14 July. This international superstar will envelop the audience in a party atmosphere, singing many great successes from his vast and much-loved repertoire, from the Commodores to the present day.
The following day will see a concert by Neil Young, a Rock veteran who still has all the fizz and energy of a young musician. He will be accompanied on Friday, 15 July, by the Promise of The Real, the band headed by Lukas Nelson (Willie Nelson’s son), with whom Neil has produced his latest amazing work: The Monsanto Years. The legendary songwriter will also perform some of his classic pieces, finally being sung in public again after a lapse of several decades.
Roberto Bolle returns at the end of July (Monday, 25 July and Tuesday, 26 July). This regular appointment with such a big name in Italian dance promises to be one of the most exciting shows ever. Thanks to the presence of international étoiles, a mix of different dance styles, great passion and elegance, over the years these evenings have cemented the huge affection felt by the Caracalla public for this successful Italian dancer.
Complete the bill of the “Extra” (Sunday, July 31) a concert by 2Cellos the two rock star of the cello calling in Roma with an explosive music show, enriched by a show of lights and special effects like a rock concert and a lineup of songs that the two cellists love to re-arrange with their unique style, from Bach to the Rolling Stones, from Morricone to AC/DC via U2, Sting, Avicii, Piazzolla and many others.