This will be a weekend of new productions, closing nights, and role debuts. Two major stars return to signature roles while one rising star takes on her first Wagner role. Then there are two bel canto favorites and some verismo. Here is a look.
Ernani – Opera de Marseille, France
Francesco Meli takes on the title role in Verdi’s early work with baritone Ludovic Tezier, bass Alexander Vinogradov, and soprano Hui He. Lawrence Foster conducts.
Norma – Oper Frankfurt, Germany
Elza Van den Heever opens a new production of Bellini’s “Norma” with Stefano La Colla and Gaëlle Arquez. Christof Loy directs the production with Antonino Fogliani conducting.
Semiramide – Bayerische Staatsoper, Germany
Albina Shagimuratova sings her final performance of the season in Rossini’s dramatic opera with Daniela Barcellona, Alex Esposito, and Michele Angelini. Antonello Allemandi conducts David Alden’s production.
Manon Lescaut – Gran Teatre del Liceu, Spain
The Gran Teatre del Liceu showcases a new production of Puccini’s “Manon Lescaut” with phenomenal casts. First Liudmyla Monastyrska and Gregory Kunde take on the iconic roles and later that weekend Maria Pia Piscitelli and Jorge de León sing the leads. Emmanuel Villaume conducts.
Lohengrin – Royal Opera House, United Kingdom
David Alden directs what OperaWire called the most anticipated production of 2018. Klaus Florian Vogt takes on his signature role with Jennifer Davis in her role debut as Elsa, her first Wagner role. Christine Goerke is Ortrud while Georg Zeppenfeld sings his signature Heinrich. Andris Nelsons conducts.