Don Giovanni

Mozart by Christopher Hogwood for the first time at the Regio

Teatro Regio, Friday 15th February 2013 at 20:00

Don Giovanni, the legendary masterpiece of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart is back at the Teatro Regio after eight years from 15th to 24th February. The setting of the Teatro Regio has a Mediterranean and sanguine character and is directed by Michele Placido who, with this same opera, here at the Regio in 2005, made his debut as a director.

Christopher Hogwood, the great English conductor, will direct both the Orchestra and the Chorus of the Regio, for the very first time. Mr. Hogwood has been acclaimed by the BBC Music Magazine: “His name is a byword for excellence of playing and quality of supporting scholarship.” His performances are characterized by rigour and absolute mastery of the contents and his interpretation of the opera is a constant philological research.

A cast of fine Mozart interpreters includes: Carlos Álvarez, Eva Mei, Carmela Remigio, Tomislav Mužek, Carlo Lepore and Rocío Ignacio.

The director Vittorio Borrelli will direct the edition. The impressive sets and costumes are by Maurizio Balò, and lights are by Andrea Anfossi; the choreographic movements are by Tiziana Tosco. The Chorus Master is Claudio Fenoglio.

«Don Giovanni - says Hogwood – is an opera of many aspects: it is a “playful drama”, therefore, the fear of death is a constant presence, contrasting with the joy of life of Mozart. The charm of Don Giovanni lies exactly in its debauchery and, for this, he will be punished! [...] it is important to be aware that we are dealing with a complicated structure, which has beautiful and complex architectures such as, for example, the two endings of the acts, then it is important to differentiate the protagonists’ characters and, within them, the various shades of the aria: where one thing is for Don Giovanni to sing aria Serenata and another is to sing the aria of champagne (Fin c'han dal vino). It's hard work, which we will strive to do together during the rehearsals, the important thing is that we have two different casts and within those, different personalities for the same role».

This is an opera where the vocal plays a central role where different styles are given to different characters according to their social status. Don Giovanni is a perfect combination, he can be noble with the more “noble” characters but at the same time capable of pathetic and funny registers with the “commoners”. For this very complex nature the Andalusian baritone Carlos Álvarez is the perfect interpreter. His great experience; a repertoire that ranges from Mozart, Rossini and Donizetti, up to Verdi and Massenet, allows him to better express the character, sometimes fascinating and seductive, sometimes abrupt and misleading by the most famous libertine of all time. The role of the “noble” Donna Anna is played by the soprano Eva Mei. She returns to the Regio after her memorable performance as Electra in Idomeneo in 2010, directed by Tomáš Netopil. Donna Elvira will be played by the beautiful voice in an elegant and intelligent interpretation of Carmela Remigio, who was applauded last year in Così fan tutte directed by Christopher Franklin. The German-born, Croatian tenor Tomislav Mužek will be Don Ottavio, Donna Anna's fiancé-to-be, Carlo Lepore, the bass, will be the voice of the famous Leporello, Don Giovanni's servant. The soprano Rocío Ignacio, born in Seville, will be Zerlina and Masetto, and her bridegroom will be Federico Longhi, the noble knight will have the voice of José Antonio García.

During the nine performances the title roles will alternate: Markus Werba (Don Giovanni), Maria Grazia Schiavo (Donna Anna), Daniela Schillaci (Donna Elvira), Francesco Marsiglia (Don Ottavio), Mirco Palazzi (Leporello) and Rosa Feola (Zerlina). Carlo Caputo is the Master on the harpsichord.

Musician and musicologist, harpsichordist and conductor, teacher, philologist and writer, the maestro Christopher Hogwood is a true star on the podium. When asked about the Teatro Regio, he says: «I like the concert hall and I know that it is a theatre where everybody involved works extremely hard. I'm surprised by the pace of such intense work: nine performances of Don Giovanni in ten days is surely quite a challenge! ». Maestro Hogwood has, to his credit, more than two hundred recordings with the Academy of Ancient Music, under the Decca label, including the complete symphonies of Mozart on period instruments. Recently, his album dedicated to Händel was awarded the Diapason d'Or. He founded the Academy of Ancient Music in 1973 and has worked as a music director for 33 years; since 2006 he assumed the title of Emeritus Director for life. His repertoire ranges from medieval to contemporary. Specialist in the interpretation of the music of Haydn and Händel, he often likes to offer the public an encounter between the ancient and the modern (Mozart and Schnittke, Webern and Bach, Haydn and Martinu). His particular interest in Czech music has earned him the Medal Martinu from Bohuslav Martinu Foundation in Prague in 1999. The commission of numerous operas by contemporary composers, including those of John Tavener, David Bedford and John Woolrich was an initiative of Christopher Hogwood while at the AAM. Among the numerous publications of Christopher Hogwood there is a study regarding patronage over the centuries (Music at Court), such as the biographical studies of Haydn, Mozart and Händel (Thames and Hudson), the story of a trio sonata (BBC Publications) and some research regarding British music. His writings have been translated into French, German, Italian, Spanish, Chinese and Japanese. He is Honorary Professor of Music at the University of Cambridge, Professor at the Royal Academy of Music and frequently collaborates with Harvard University.

Don Giovanni will be presented to the public by Vittorio Sabadin in the Incontro con l'Opera to take place at the Piccolo Regio Puccini on Wednesday 6th February at 17:30.

Don Giovanni will be recorded and broadcast by Rai-Radio3 at a date yet to be announced.

Teatro Regio Box Office – Piazza Castello 215 - Telephone 011.8815.241/242 - e-mail: biglietteria@teatroregio.torino.it. For more information please call 011.8815.557 or go to our website on www.teatroregio.torino.it.

Torino, 24th January 2013

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