Vlaanderen’s 2017-18 Season Includes Oscar-Winning Actor Directing ‘Falstaff’

By David Salazar

The Opera Ballet Vlaanderen has officially revealed its schedule for the 2017-18 season.

The company kicks things off in Gent and Antwerp on Sept. 15 with a production of “Das Wunder der Heliane” by Korngold. The opera gets four performances at Opera Gent and five at Opera Antwerpen with Alexander Joel conducting a cast that includes Ian Storey as the Stranger. David Bösch directs the productions.

On Nov. 17, 2017, Opera Gent will showcase Donizetti’s “Le Duc d’Albe” starring Hélène d’Egmont and Henri de Bruges. Andriy Yurkevych conducts the six performances.

Verdi’s “Falstaff” comes to both cities between Dec. 13, 2017 and Jan. 20, 2018. Antwerp gets nine performances throughout December while Gent gets six shows between Jan. 10 and 20. Academy Award winning actor Christoph Waltz directs the production which stars Johannes Martin Kränzle as Ford and Thomas Johannes Mayer as the title character.

Debussy’s “Pelléas et Mélisande” gets six shows apiece in both cities starting on Feb. 2, 2018. Antwerp gets the first half while the Gent run starts on the 23rd of February and ends on March 4.

Antwerp will be the only site of the seven “Parsifal” performances. The run starts on March 18, 2018 and ends on April 4. Stefan Kocan leads a young cast as Gurnemanz with Erin Caves in the title role.

“La Clemenza di Tito” operas in Gent on May 6, 2018 and will run for four shows before shifting to Antwerp on May 23 for six performances. Anna Goryachova plays Sesto while Lothar Odinius takes on the title role. Agneta Eichenholz plays Vitellia.

The season ends with Prokofiev’s “The Gambler” starting on June 13, 2018, in Gent. After four performances, Antwerp will see the opera for six shows starting on June 28, 2018. The season ends on July 7, 2018. Eric Halfvarson, Anna Nechaeva, Ladislav Elgr, Renée Morloc, Michael J. Scott and Kai Küütel star with Dmitri Jurowski conducting.