Weekend Preview – International (1/27- 1/29): Jonas Kaufmann headlines a Sold Out ‘Lohengrin’ and Anita Rachvelishvili returns to ‘Il Trovatore’

By Francisco Salazar

What are you doing this weekend? Do you have any plans? If not the world’s greatest houses have some great offerings this weekend. Among the artists performing include Placido Domingo, Juan Diego Florez, Lise Lindstorm and Francesco Meli.


The weekend kicks off with Gounod’s “Romeo et Juliette” at the Vienna State Opera. The production stars Aida Garifullina and Juan Diego Florez with Placido Domingo conducting. It will be followed on Sunday by Mozart’s “Don Giovanni” with Simon Keenlyside, Erwin Schrott, Irina Lungu and Dorothea Röschmann.


At the Opéra Royal de Wallonie, audiences will have a chance to see Berlioz’s “La Damnation de Faust” with an all star cast. Patrick Davin conducts Paul Groves, Nino Surguladze, and Ildebrando D’Arcangelo.


At the Royal Danish Opera  the company will premiere “The Martrydom.” The opera will include a guest performance by  Cumulus Teatret and countertenor Morten Grove Frandsen (Opera Talent of the Year 2015), and mezzo-soprano Liv Oddveig Midtmagelitake will take on the lead roles in John Frandsen’s new work.


If your lucky to get a ticket, the Opera National de Paris will be showing Wagner’s “Lohengrin” with Jonas Kaufmann and Martina Serafin. Rene Pape, Evelyn Herlitzius and Wolfgang Koch round out the stellar cast that has been receiving great reviews.

The weekend will also see two Mozart operas; “The Magic Flute” and “Cosi Fan Tutte.”


The Bayerische Staatsoper will preview Rossini’s “Semiramide” in a press conference with Joyce Didonato. There will also be a performance of Mussorgsky’s “Boris Goduonov” with Dmitry Belosselskiy in the title role.

Wagner’s ‘Tanhausser” kicks off the weekend at the Deutsche Oper Berlin. The opera, which is premiering stars Robert Dean Smith as Tanhausser and Camilla Nylund as both Venus and Elizabeth.

Also playing at the house will be Verdi’s “Nabucco” in its final January performance with Dalibor Jenis and Anna Smirnova. The weekend concludes with a revival of Meyerbeer’s “Les Huguenots” after having garnered acclaim in the fall.

In Dusseldorf’s Deutsche Oper am Rhein, Rimsky Korsakov’s “The Golden Cockerel”  will be shown as well as Puccini’s “Turandot” with Lise Lindstrom as the icy princess and Zoran Todorovich as Calaf. The company will also present Verdi’s “Rigoletto” with Gordon Hawkins and Heidi Elisabeth Meier


At the Teatro alla Scala Verdi’s “Don Carlo” continues its run with Francesco Meli and Krassimira Stoyanova. The new production is directed by Peter Stein and is conducted by Myung-Whun Chung.

Wagner’s “Tanhausser” headlines the weekend at the Teatro la Fenice with Liene Kinča as Elizabeth and Ausrine Stundyte as Venus while “Cosi Fan Tutte” headlines the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma in its final performance of the season.


At the Bolshoi Opera audiences will get a chance to hear Rossini’s ensemble opera “Il Viaggio in Riems” with Marianna Pizzolato and John Osborn. The opera will be performed in concert and will only be shown twice.


Piotr Beczala and Jose Bros will continue their acclaimed turns as Massenet’s “Werther” as they alternate the part at the Liceu. Anna Caterina Antonacci and Nora Gubisch alternate the role of Charlotte in Willy Decker’s acclaimed production.


William Christie conducts Stéphanie D’Oustrac as Medee in Charpentier’s popular opera at the Zurich Opera. The cast also includes Mélissa Petit, Reinoud Van Mechelen and Nahuel Di Pierro.

United Kingdom 

Anita Rachvelishvili returns to the Royal Opera’s production of Verdi’s “Il Trovatore” with Gregory Kunde and Lianna Haroutounian. The company will also continue its run of George Benjamin “Written on Skin,” which is receiving acclaim.