Richard Strauss’s Elegant Romance Arabella Has a Rare Met Revival,
With Major Debuts in Principal Roles
Swedish soprano Malin Byström stars as the beautiful Arabella,
with German baritone Michael Volle in his Met debut as her wealthy suitor Mandryka
German soprano Juliane Banse and tenor Roberto Saccà make Met debuts
as Arabella’s sister, Zdenka, and her penniless love, Matteo
New York, NY (March 13, 2014) – Richard Strauss’s Arabella will return to the Met April 3 for its first company performances since 2001, conducted by Philippe Auguin and featuring a principal cast of rising stars and artists new to the Met. Swedish soprano Malin Byström, who made a notable Met debut in Gounod’s Faust two seasons ago, will take the central role of the charming and much-courted Arabella. German baritone Michael Volle, a leading exponent of dramatic baritone roles in Europe, makes his Met debut as Mandryka, the suitor who offers Arabella security and devotion. Three additional European stars, German soprano Juliane Banse and tenorRoberto Saccà and Austrian bass-baritone Martin Winkler, make their respective Met debuts as Arabella’s sister, Zdenka; Matteo, the young man Zdenka pines for despite his infatuation with her sister; and Waldner, the sisters’ destitute father. Arabella will be performed in a revival of Otto Schenk’s 1983 production. Erin Wall, the Canadian soprano who sang Helena in Britten’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Met earlier this season, will star as Arabella in the April 24 performance.
Malin Byström made her Met debut in December 2011 as Marguerite in that season’s new production of Faust. Her roles with other opera companies this season include three Mozart heroines: Countess Almaviva in Le Nozze di Figaro with Geneva Opera, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte at the Bavarian State Opera, and Donna Anna in a new production of Don Giovanni at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden. Her recent performances have also included the title role in Massenet’s Thaïs at Valencia’s Palau de les Arts, opposite Plácido Domingo as Athanaël, and Marguerite at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden.
Michael Volle has sung Mandryka with Deutsche Oper Berlin and Paris Opera and will sing the role this fall at Barcelona’s Gran Teatre del Liceu. Last summer, he sang an acclaimed Hans Sachs in the Salzburg Festival’s new production of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg and starred as Wotan in Wagner’s Das Rheingold at La Scala under the baton of Daniel Barenboim. His other recent performances have included Monforte in Verdi’s Les Vêpres Siciliennes at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden, and the title role in Wagner’s Der Fliegende Holländer at Berlin State Opera; later this season, he will sing the title role in a new production of Rossini’s Guillaume Tell at the Munich Festival.
Juliane Banse made her American debut earlier this season as Rosalinde in a new production of Johann Strauss’s Die Fledermaus at Lyric Opera of Chicago. Her recent performances in Europe have included the title role in a concert performance of Braunfels’s Jeanne d’Arc at the Salzburg Festival; Leonore in Beethoven’s Fidelio at Theater an der Wien; Vitellia in Mozart’s La Clemenza di Tito at the Vienna State Opera; and Eva in Wagner’s Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg at Zurich Opera. In 2010, she sang the title role in Arabella at the Tyrolean State Theater in Innsbruck.
Roberto Saccà’s other roles this season include Walther von Stolzing in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, which he sang at Dutch National Opera, Zurich Opera, and in Stefan Herheim’s new production at the Salzburg Festival. This season, he also sings the title role in a new production of Wagner’s Lohengrin at the Düsseldorf Opera House and Theater Duisburg, and Bacchus in Strauss’s Ariadne auf Naxos at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden.
Martin Winkler sang Alberich in Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen last summer at the Bayreuth Festival, where he will repeat the role in this year’s cycles. He has a long association with the Volksoper in Vienna, where his recent roles have included Urstrumpf and Zeitenfresser in Christian Kolonovits’s Antonia und der Reißteufel, Dr. Bartolo in Rossini’s Il Barbiere di Siviglia, and Peter in Humperdinck’s Hansel und Gretel.
Philippe Auguin made his Met debut in 2001 conducting the company premiere of Busoni’s Doktor Faust. In subsequent seasons, he has led a diverse repertory that includes Strauss’s Die Frau ohne Schatten, Wagner’s Lohengrin, and Puccini’s Tosca and La Bohème. Earlier this season, he led some performances of Puccini’s Madama Butterfly.
Arabella Radio Broadcasts
The April 3 opening performance of Arabella will be broadcast live on Metropolitan Opera Radio on SIRIUS XM Channel 74, as will the performances on April 19 and 24. The April 3 performance will also be streamed live on the Met’s website, www.metopera.org.
The April 19 matinee performance will be broadcast live over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network.
For More Information
For more information on this season’s performances of Arabella, please visit the Met’s website at http://www.metopera.org.
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MET DEBUTS & MET ROLE DEBUTS
Julian Banse, Zdenka (April 3)
Roberto Saccà, Matteo (April 3)
Michael Volle, Mandryka (April 3)
Martin Winkler, Waldner (April 3)
Catherine Wyn-Rogers, Adelaide (April 3)
Brian Jagde, Elemer (April 3)
Met Role Debuts
Philippe Auguin, Conductor
Malin Byström, Arabella
Erin Wall, Arabella
Genia Kühmeier, Zdenka
Audrey Luna, Fiakermilli
Victoria Livengood, Fortune-Teller
Alexey Lavrov, Dominik
Keith Miller, Lamoral
Mark Schowalter, Waiter