The Opera Platform announces its streaming programme from September 2015 to February 2016

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The ABC of opera

Date of release: 8 September 2015

The Opera Platform announces its streaming programme from September 2015 to February 2016

The next stage of the European Opera Season offered by The Opera Platform delivers the ABC of opera, three of the most popular titles ever created – Aida, Bohème and Carmen. Together they represent the perfect introduction to this world of opera.

Aida embodies the best of grand opera made in Italy. Fittingly, our production comes from one of Italy’s leading theatres, Teatro Regio in Turin, whose Music Director Gianandrea Noseda is widely regarded as one of today’s top exponents of Verdi’s music. In October, he conducts a brand new production of Aida staged by the fabled American film director William Friedkin, author of a wide range of Hollywood spectaculars including The French Connection and The Exorcist. The Opera Platform showcases this production live from Turin on 24 October with a cast led by Kristin Lewis and Marco Berti.

The previous month’s showcase opera is La bohème, Puccini’s incomparable evocation of romantic Paris and what is like to be young, poor and in love. This production has been created by Norwegian Opera in Oslo, and is the work of Norway’s world-famous director Stefan Herheim. His contemporary staging takes as its starting point the traditional sets and costumes from Oslo in 1963, and provides a reflection on the past which relates to the present. Its vibrant young singers breathe new life into Puccini’s evergreen melodies.

Carmen is the ultimate femme fatale, an untameable gypsy who is a magnet to attract men, until she meets with an obsessive soldier who at first resists, then is ensnared, and finally leads her defiant to her fate. Bizet’s music is a miracle at conveying colour and passion and wit, evoking the sultry Andalusian heat with Gallic precision. Appropriately, our showcase production comes from Opéra de Lyon and its idiomatic cast is directed by one of France’s leading directors, Olivier Py. It joins our European Opera Season in February 2016.

While that season encompasses this essential ABC of opera, the programme for the next six months also enriches your experience with some less familiar titles. Following La bohème in September will be the thoroughly contemporary thrill of Powder her Face, the brilliant and salacious first opera of Thomas Adès, whose next opera has been commissioned for the Salzburg Festival in co-production with the New York Met and Covent Garden. The production by Mariusz Trelinski will come live from Brussels on 2 October and is in collaboration between La Monnaie De Munt and Polish National Opera.

Direct from Warsaw, you may experience the première on 19 November of Polish National Opera’s new staging by David Pountney of a great 19th century Polish classic, Straszny Dwór (The Haunted Manor). This is a rare opportunity to see and hear an original, tuneful and colourful opera, beloved in its own country but hardly ever performed outside Poland. This showcase is an example of how The Opera Platform also looks to introduce audiences to less familiar repertoire.

A further remarkable rediscovery, this time from Berlin, is Paul Abraham’s operetta Ball im Savoy. An immediate and enormous success when first performed in 1932 but banned the following year, it is a captivating blend of Berlin jazz, Hungarian gypsy music, Viennese melodies and Yiddish klezmer. Director Barrie Kosky has created a joyous and sparkling spectacle which has been greeted by packed houses at the Komische Oper ever since its première. It joins our European Opera Season in December.

Kosky and his Komische Oper will also be responsible for the showcase opera at the end of January, with the opening night live of their new production of Yevgeny Onegin. Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece, closely based on Pushkin’s immortal poem of young and rejected love, is deservedly the best-loved of all Russian operas with its peerless melodies and heart-rending story. The central role of Tatyana will be played by the mesmerising Lithuanian soprano Asmik Grigorian.

The Opera Platform offers opera lovers and curious web-surfers a carefully curated European Opera Season, bringing the best of what European opera companies have to offer for the enjoyment of all – free, live and on demand.

Dates for your diary

12 September

La bohème* Giacomo Puccini

Den Norske Opera og Ballett Oslo

2 October

Powder her Face* Thomas Adès

La Monnaie De Munt Brussels

24 October

Aida* Giuseppe Verdi

Teatro Regio Torino

19 November

Straszny dwór (The Haunted Manor)* Stanisław Moniuszko

Polish National Opera

4 December

Ball im Savoy

Paul Abraham

Komische Oper Berlin

31 January

Yevgeny Onegin*

Pyotr Ilyitch Tchaikovsky

Komische Oper Berlin

12 February

Carmen* Georges Bizet

Opéra de Lyon

*Available for 6 months, subtitled in 6 languages (English, French, German, Spanish, Italian and Polish) within a few days of the live relay

The Opera Platform is a project supported by Creative Europe, led by Opera Europa, the European association of opera companies and festivals gathering 160 members in 40 countries, in partnership with the Franco-German cultural broadcaster ARTE and fifteen opera companies: Austria: Wiener Staatsoper; Belgium: La Monnaie/De Munt Bruxelles; Finland: Finnish National Opera Helsinki; France: Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, Opéra national de Lyon; Germany: Komische Oper Berlin, Oper Stuttgart; Italy: Teatro Regio Torino; Latvia: Latvian National Opera Riga; Netherlands: Dutch National Opera Amsterdam; Norway: Den Norske Opera og Ballett Oslo; Poland: Polish National Opera Warsaw; Spain: Teatro Real Madrid; United Kingdom: Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Welsh National Opera.

For more information, please contact:

Opera Europa

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