Teatro Real de Madrid Confirms No Blackface in ‘Aida’ Revival

By Francisco Salazar

The Teatro Real de Madrid has confirmed that it will not use blackface for its upcoming revival of “Aida.”

Following the controversy at the Arena di Verona, OperaWire reached out to the Teatro Real regarding the revival of Hugo de Ana’s 1998 production which was last revived in 2018 and saw all its artists using blackface. The theater subsequently responded via email that there would be no blackface in this year’s revival.

The inquiry was made as Jamie Barton and Anna Netrebko will be both be performing in the production; Barton called out Netrebko’s use of blackface in a current production at the Arena di Verona via Twitter. It is important to note that the two artists will not be performing “Aida” together but on different days.

OperaWire has also reached out to the Teatro Comunale di Bologna about the use of blackface in a new production of “Otello” which recently premiered in June. We have not heard back from the theater as of this writing.

Here is a look at the last time “Aida” was revived in Madrid (the video includes depictions of Blackface so viewer discretion is advised).