Top 6 Operas to See This Weekend – International (12/14-16)

Brenda Rae, Marina Rebeka & Luca Pisaroni Headline Revivals & New Productions

By Francisco Salazar

While the holiday season might mean a slow-down of productions in some countries, there are still a plethora of opera productions for those so included. This weekend is dedicated to classic pieces in productions or featuring star casts. There is also one rarely performed work, that is intriguing as it is directed by one of the most acclaimed theaters in the world. Here is a look at what we recommend.

Euryanthe – Theater an der Wien, Austria

Weber’s rarely performed work stars Jacquelyn Wagner and Norman Reinhardt with Christof Loy directing the new production. Constantin Trinks conducts the ORF Radio-Symphonieorchester Wien.

Don Pasquale – La Monnaie, Belgium

Michele Pertusi leads the first cast in Donizetti’s comic gem. Danielle de Niese is Norina and Joel Prieto is Ernesto while Alain Altinoglu conducts Laurent Pelly’s immersive production. The second cast stars Pietro Spagnoli, Rodion Pogossov, and Anne-Catherine Gillet.

I Puritani – Oper Frankfurt, Germany

Brenda Rae and John Osborn lead a new production of Bellini’s masterpiece as directed by Vincent Boussard and with costumes by Christian Lacroix. Tito Ceccherini conducts the production, which also stars Iurii Samoilov and Thomas Faulkner.

La Bohème – Teatro Massimo di Palermo, Italy 

Marina Rebeka and Matthew Polenzani lead the first cast in Puccini’s most popular work. They are joined by Jessica Nuccio and Vincenzo Taormina. The second and third cast, which also performs during the weekend, includes Valeria Sepe and Roberta Mantegna, who share the role of Mimi, while Stefan Pop and Vincenzo Costanzo alternate Rodolfo. Hasmik Torosyan and Vittorio Prato round out the casts as Musetta and Marcello. Daniel Oren conducts the production by Mario Pontiggia.

Luisa Miller – Opera de Monte Carlo, Monaco

Roberto Alagna and Aleksandra Kurzak headline a concert performance of Verdi’s early masterwork. Adrian Sâmpetrean and Artur Ruciński round out the superb cast, which is conducted by Italian specialist Maurizio Benini.

L’Italiana in Algeri – Gran Teatre del Liceu, Spain

Luca Pisaroni sings the role of Mustafa in his Liceu debut. Maxim Mironov, also in his house debut, sings his signature role of Lindoro with Varduhi Abrahamyan as the title character. The second cast is headed by Simón Orfila, Edgardo Rocha, and Maite Beaumont. Riccardo Frizza conducts all performances. And if you miss the performances this week, the opera will be live in cinemas on Dec. 18, 2018.