Top 5 Operas to See This Weekend – International (8/17-19)

Jonas Kaufmann, Joyce El-Khoury & Sean Panikkar Headline

By Francisco Salazar

Festival season continues while some of the bigger opera companies start to open up in time for the fall showcase. This weekend will feature some acclaimed stars as well as a world premiere and a rarely performed work. Here is what we recommend.

Aida – Opera Australia, Australia

Natalie Aroyan,  Riccardo Massi, and Milijana Nikolic star in Verdi’s epic classic. The production directed by Davide Livermore is conducted by established conductor Pier Giorgio Morandi. Here is a preview of this version of “Aida.”

The Bassarid s -Salzburg Festival, Austria 

Hans Werner Henze’s opera returns to the Salzburg Festival, where the opera had its world premiere in 1966. This time, Krzysztof Warlikowski directs the production with Kent Nagano conducting. The all-star cast features Sean Panikkar, Russell Braun, Willard White, and Nikolai Schukoff.

Sardanapalo – Weimar, Staatskapelle, Germany 

Principal Conductor Kirill Karabits of the Staatskapelle Weimar will give the world premiere of a rediscovered Italian opera by Franz Liszt. The work, which was left incomplete and has lain largely forgotten in a German archive for almost 100 years, has been resurrected by David Trippett, Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Music at the University of Cambridge. This weekend, soprano Joyce El-Khoury and tenor Charles Castronovo will lead the cast.

Il Barbiere di Siviglia – Teatro la Fenice, Italy 

Gregory Kunde conducts the Rossini masterpiece which he once sang. He leads rising stars Chiara Amarù, Francisco Brito, Julian Kim, Omar Montanari, Mattia Denti, and Giovanna Donadini in a production by Bepi Morassi.

Die Walküre – Gstaad Menuhin Festival, Switzerland 

Jonas Kaufmann sings the first act of “Die Walkure” alongside Martina Serafin and Falk Struckmann. Jaap van Zweden conducts the concert performance, which will also include other Wagner works.