María José Siri To Headline New ‘Francesca Da Rimini’ At La Scala

By Francisco Salazar

On April 15, 2018, María José Siri will make her role debut in the title role of Zandonai’s “Francesca da Rimini” at the Teatro alla Scala.

The soprano will headline a new production by David Pountney, which is set to be conducted by Maestro Fabio Luisi and will also star Marcelo Puente as Paolo il Bello, Gabriele Viviani as Giovanni lo Sciancato, Luciano Ganci as Malatestino dall’Occhio, and Alisa Kolosova as Samaritana.

The new production marks the first time the Teatro alla Scala performs the work since the 1958-59 season, where the legendary Magda Olivero interpreted the role of the doomed heroine.

Per a press release, Siri noted, “Francesca was a pleasant surprise for me, though I must confess it did not overwhelm me at a first listening. After playing it on the piano, which is my favorite way to get acquainted with a role, I totally changed my mind: I found many touching parts, such as the female chorus “Ohimè, ohimè che doglia acerba” right before my entrance, an almost Celtic music I found magic, and then Francesca’s very first word: ‘Amor!’ I fell in love with this role, which is sweet, magic, passional fiery, rebellious and seducing at the same time.”

“Francesca Da Rimini” marks a return for Siri to La Scala where she made her debut as “Aida” in 2009. She would later return to the famed theater in 2015 for “Aida” in Peter Stein’s staging.  She also opened the 2016-17 season as “Madama Butterfly” and also sang the Messa per Rossini.

The opening night performance will be broadcast on Rai 3 and the production runs through May 13, 2018.