The new 2015 summer opera and ballet season
At Caracalla artistic excellence unites with the immense popularity of Italian opera and results in an increase in ticket sales and profits
Opera performances have increased from 16 to 20 –
A new policy on ticket prices with the possibility of a subscription
A season dedicated to the masterpieces of Giacomo Puccini –
Dance with the Pink Floyd Ballet and the Roberto Bolle Gala
Puccini wins over Caracalla. The summer programme of the 2014-2015 season of the Teatro dell’Opera at the most famous ancient Baths in the world shall be completely dedicated to this composer whose operas, along with Verdi’s, are performed the most all over the world. Performances of Madama Butterfly, Turandot, and La Bohème wil be alternating on the stage of Caracalla. There will also be two ballets: the Pink Floyd Ballet by Roland Petit and the Roberto Bolle Gala.
This programme is a milestone in the process of cultural renewal and productivity enhancement initiated by the superintendent Carlo Fuortes since his appointment in December 2013. The goal is to present popular operas with original productions and top-notch performers along with a constant increase in performances and ticket sales. This will strengthen the role of the Teatro dell’Opera in the cultural offerings of Rome and the country as a whole.
“Last year at Caracalla – states the general manager Carlo Fuortes – I believe we had a clear demonstration of how an opera theatre can produce not only culture and performances, but also entertainment and enjoyment. In the splendour of the ancient Baths it is easier to unite quality and popularity than in a traditional theatre. In 2015 we want to continue in this direction with a summer season completely dedicated to Puccini”.
The numbers attest to this plan. In fact, there has been a constant increase at Caracalla: the number of performances almost doubled in 2014 compared to 2013 (from 9 to 16), and this year it will rise to 20, for a total, including the ballets, of 26 performances. This increase involves the Orchestra, Chorus, Corps de Ballet and all of the other departments of the Rome Foundation.
Quality, a new method of communication and an increase in the number of performances will transform into substantially higher profits and a fundamentally self-financed theatre. Already last year (despite the agitation and various problems which have been resolved) the season recorded an attendance of over 56 thousand spectators, surpassing the previous year 2013 (49 thousand) by 13 per cent, with total profits of 2.3 million euros (1.9 million in 2013). The great and evocative stalls of Caracalla with 4000 seats will produce assets which will benefit the total budget of the Foundation.
Our policy is to increase productivity and artistic excellence consistent with the programming of the Teatro Costanzi. The public, the true gauge of the theatre, has responded with enthusiasm: the performances of The Nutcracker, in December 2014 and January 2015 recorded an attendance of 21 thousand spectators, an absolute record in the history of the Teatro dell’Opera.
Hence, the relationship between the theatre and the city of Rome has improved fully satisfying the requests coming from the capital city which boasts a wonderful and diversified combination of inhabitants and tourists. In fact, this year the 2015 Caracalla music festival will be sponsored by Expo 2015, an honour which is also a clear acknowledgement of the renewed capacity of the Foundation as a central point of interest for national and international tourism.
Reaching out to the public, in a concrete way, acquiring new groups of spectators is another objective of the summer season at Caracalla: through a new price policy, with a decrease in ticket prices and, above all, with the creation of a new subscription to three opera performances which permits a considerable savings compared to the purchase of a single ticket.
The 2015 Caracalla season opens on 23 June with a ballet classic, a premiere in Rome involving the Corps de Ballet of the Teatro dell’Opera: the Pink Floyd Ballet choreographed by Roland Petit. Performances will be repeated on 24, 25, 26 and 27 June. This masterpiece was created by the great French choreographer in 1972 based on music by the famous band. Its great impact is due to the psychedlic effects of the music, the clever lighting and the choreographed movements which unite cultured dance with rock. The performance also includes La rose malade with music by Gustav Mahler. Another ballet performance on 27 July, a not to be missed event for the audiences of the Baths, will be the Roberto Bolle Gala.
The passion of love, the torments of the heart and the music of Giacomo Puccini which has the power to move all audiences will begin on 6 July with Madama Butterfly. This original production which is sure to provoke conversation, is brought to us by the stage director Alex Ollé of avant-garde Spanish theatre troupe La fura dels Baus (the same group who produced Le Grand Macabre by György Ligeti at the Costanzi in 2009). Maestro Yves Abel will be on the podium, one of the most interesting conductors of operatic and concert music of his generation. Performances will continue on 9, 14, 16, and 30 July and 6 August.
On 15 July a new production of Turandot will appear on the Caracalla stage with direction, sets and costumes by Denis Krief, the highly acclaimed creator of Rusalka, the opera which opened the new season at the Costanzi. On the podium will be Juraj Valcuha, a refined performer and the current principal conductor of the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai. The performance will be repeated on 18, 20, 24, 28, 31 July, and on 4 and 8 August.
Back on 25 July, after its success during the last season at Caracalla, will be La Bohème with sets, costumes and stage direction by Davide Livermore. This production tells the story of two Parisian lovers illustrated by great works of impressionist painters. The evocative and moving music of this operatic masterpiece coupled with the colours of these great paintings projected onto the Baths of Caracalla make for an unforgettable evening. Maestro Paolo Arrivabeni, a master of Italian opera, will conduct the performances which will continue on 29 July, 1, 3, 5, and 7 August.
Tickets for the 2015 summer season will go on sale 15 January at the Ticket Office of the Teatro dell’Opera. Ticket reservations by telephone and ticket sales online at Listicket (available at www.listicket.com) will start at 10am on Monday, 19 January.