Opera Festival of Chicago to Close Inaugural Season with ‘Il Tabarro’

By Logan Martell

On August 5, 2021, Opera Festival of Chicago will close its inaugural season with a fully-staged production of Puccini’s “Il Tabarro,” held at Chicago’s Thalia Hall.

The production, marking the first performance of the work in Chicago in 25 years, is directed by Marc Verzatt, with Emanuele Andrizzi conducting the Opera Festival Chicago Orchestra. Set design is by Ella Marchment, with costumes by Izumi Inaba, and lighting by Bridget Williams.

The cast features Franco Pomponi as Michele, Christopher Colmenero as Luigi, Jenny Schuler as Giorgetta, Ola Rafalo as La Frugola, Tao Tong as the Song Vendor, Frank DeVincentis as Talpa, Angel Azzara as Midinette, with Maximiliano Illanes and Valeria Rodriguez as lovers, and Tyrique Macneal and Michael Rivera as stevedores.

Opera Festival of Chicago seeks to present Italian opera that is often overlooked in the United States. Their 2021 season opened with Ermanno Wolf-Ferrari’s “Il segreto di Susanna” on July 24, and presented “Dante 700,” a program of operatic works inspired by the great poet, on July 28 and 29.