Nikolas Nägele debuts as conductor of the Orchestra of Teatro Regio
Freshness and elegance in the opera directed by Pier Luigi Pizzi
Teatro Regio, Wednesday 15th , January at 8pm
Wednesday, January 15 at 8.00 pm, Il matrimonio segreto/The Secret Marriage, a playful melodrama by Domenico Cimarosa, will be staged, with five unmissable performances, until January 24. Nikolas Nägele conducts the Orchestra of Teatro Regio; the direction, scenery and costumes are by Pier Luigi Pizzi. The brilliant young cast includes Carolina Lippo in the role of Violanta, Marco Filippo Romano as Geronimo, Alasdair Kent as Paolino, Markus Werba as Count Robinson, Fidalma and Elisetta are played respectively by Monica Bacelli and Eleonora Bellocci.
Nikolas Nägele, a talented young man making his debut on the Regio podium, was a finalist in the second Sir Georg Solti international competition with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He won the James Conlon Conducting Prize in 2012 and the Aspen Conducting Prize in 2013. Since 2017, he has been the Kapellmeister of the Deutsche Oper in Berlin. In Italy he has performed at the Valle d'Itria Festival in Martina Franca, at the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, at the Teatro Comunale in Bologna, and at the Rossini Opera Festival in Pesaro.
The direction by Pier Luigi Pizzi, conceived for the Festival of the Valle d'Itria in Martina Franca, projects the plot into a contemporary setting, which breaks the cliché of the somewhat old-fashioned and static comic opera and brings out all the freshness and modernity of Cimarosa's masterpiece. Pizzi stages an elegant open space, furnished with works of pop art and designer furniture, in which the characters and desires of Geronimo, a wealthy collector, of his two emancipated and somewhat rebellious daughters, of an ageing but still charming aunt, of a young man with high hopes, and of the inevitable uncomfortable third wheel, an exotic playboy who's a bit of a braggart, meet and collide creating an intertwinement worthy of an ante litteram family sitcom. The lighting design is by Andrea Anfossi.
Carolina Lippo plays the role of Carolina. A member of the Young Artist Program of the Theater an der Wien from 2016 to 2018, her Debutants award from the Semperoper of Dresden and her victory at the Stella Maris competition allowed her to launch an international career. Marco Filippo Romano, one of the most beloved comic baritones on the international scene, is a regular on the Turin stage, where he has met with great success The Italian in Algiers, The Barber of Seville, The Turk in Italy, The Serpent Lady, Cinderella, and Turandot. In the role of Geronimo, he garnered acclaim in the original production of this staging at the Valle d'Itria Festival. Paolino is played by the young Australian tenor Alasdair Kent, who already played the role in Martina Franca with great success, as Opera magazine wrote: «the character is superbly supported, Kent expresses a suave, lightly lyrical tone, but with remarkable power and extension». Another voice beloved by the audiences of Teatro Regio is that of Markus Werba, who returns to our stage in the role of Count Robinson, after having played Uberto in Agnese in the past season and having given extraordinary performances when playing Papageno in The Magic Flute. After his exceptional debut in 1997, chosen by Strehler for the inauguration of the Piccolo Teatro in Milan with Cosi fan tutte, Werba quickly established himself as one of the best international baritone voices, with a vast repertoire in which his Mozartian roles stand out. Another very welcome return is that of Monica Bacelli, a mezzo-soprano with a strong musical and scenic personality and the winner of the Abbiati Award for best singer, who plays Fidalma. Whereas Eleonora Bellocci in the role of Elisetta is making her debut at Regio.
At its premiere in 1792 at the Burgtheater in Vienna, The Secret Wedding was so popular that Emperor Leopold II, not satisfied with the numerous encores, invited the entire cast to dinner, and after the banquet he wanted to listen to the opera again. Needless to say, that absolutely unique event immediately projected the title into the Guinness records of Opera Buffa, making it one of the most loved masterpieces by Cimarosa and of the whole genre; thanks to the verve of brilliant and amusing staged intrigues and the charm of a musical freshness that transcends the centuries. In short, The Secret Marriage ”has everything an opera buffa must have,” as one exceptional critic said: Giuseppe Verdi.
The plot's ingredients are the indispensable and always effective ones of comic theater: a couple of young lovers, a father-master who is eager to gain social status, a rich suitor, an ambitious sister, and an widowed aunt eager to find a husband. Paolino and Carolina, married in secret for two months, cannot live their love openly. Geronimo, a narrow-minded merchant, Carolina's father and Paolino's boss, could not tolerate seeing his second-born daughter marry a penniless young man: his ideal son-in-law is Count Robinson, whom he has chosen to marry the sour Elisetta, Carolina's older sister. The story gets tangled when the count instead falls in love with Carolina, trying to conquer her in every way, while the old aunt Fidalma takes it into her head to marry Paolino. Secrets, misunderstandings, attempted escapes, and the inevitable happy ending make The Secret Marriage one of the cornerstones of eighteenth-century dramaturgy.
For The Conferences at Teatro Regio series, on Wednesday, January 8 at 5:30 pm in the Foyer del Toro, the Superintendent and Artistic Director Sebastian F. Schwarz, with the participation of the director Pier Luigi Pizzi, will preside over the presentation entitled: De Facto Couples. Admission is free.
The live radio broadcast of the opera, curated by Susanna Franchi, will be on Rai Radio 3 on Wednesday, January 15 at 8 pm.
Tickets are on sale at the Teatro Regio Ticket Office, piazza Castello 215 - Tel. 011.8815.241/242, at Infopiemonte-Torinocultura, in the Vivaticket salespoints, and online on our website without commission costs and on www.vivaticket .it, and by telephone at no. 011.8815.270. Ticket prices: all performances €90 - 80 - 70 - 65 – 30. Tickets reduced by 20% for those under 30 and 10% for those over 65. An hour before the shows, any tickets still available are on sale with a 20% reduction on the full price. Until January 7, two new Christmas formulas are available for those who want to give a gift or give themselves, a unique experience at Teatro Regio: Jingle Opera and Jingle Music. Jingle Opera permits a 30% discount on the purchase of a second ticket for all the dates of some titles scheduled for the Opera Season. Jingle Music is a mini-subscription that includes 3 concerts at particularly affordable prices, depending on the sector, €55 - 60 - 65.
For further information: Tel. 011.8815.557 e www.teatroregio.torino.it.
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