Gianandrea Noseda conducts Richard Strauss's first great masterpiece
The opera symbol of the Twentieth-Century, in semi-staging form, directed by Laurie Feldman

Teatro Regio, Thursday 15 February 2018, at 8pm


On Thursday 15 February 2018, at 8pm, the Teatro Regio presents Salome, by Richard Strauss. The podium of the Teatro Regio's Orchestra is taken by Gianandrea Noseda, at his third operatic appointment of the Season at the Regio, after the successes achieved with Tristano e Isotta and Turandot.
Due to the events occurring on 18 January, the stage machines at Teatro Regio are undergoing a series of technical checks; consequently, it is not currently possible to produce stages with moving sets. In order to ensure this key work of the Regio Season and the Strauss Festival goes ahead, Salome is thus presented in semi-staging form. This new version, directed by Laurie Feldman, will faithfully follow the libretto and will feature the essential aspects of the powerful drama inherent in Strauss's masterpiece, fully conveying all the symbolism contained in the work. On the stage, amid black backgrounds, some chairs will connote the scenic space within which all of the opera's characters will interact, including Jochanaan who, in the scenes set in the cistern in which he was imprisoned, will sing emblematically in the pit, alongside the orchestra. Each character will wear a costume, connoting their role and bringing out their personality. The show lighting, which will enhance the salient points of the drama, is created by Andrea Anfossi, the costumes by Laura Viglione.
The cast of internationally renowned great artists employed in the production has been confirmed: the role of Salome will be taken by the soprano Erika Sunnegårdh; Herod is played by the tenor Robert Brubaker; Herodias is the soprano Doris Soffel while Jochanaan is entrusted to the voice and presence of the baritone Tommi Hakala. The production is also the key title of the Richard Strauss Festival which, from 2 to 25 February, is being staged by Turin's cultural institutions in a collective homage to the great German composer.
Gianandrea Noseda conducts Salome highlighting all the revolutionary musical solutions that it contains; the opera, composed between 1902 and 1905, is a true manifesto of Twentieth-Century music. Strauss's masterpiece is, moreover, deeply linked to the Regio as it was precisely in our theatre, in 1906, that Strauss conducted its first Italian performance. The sumptuous score, played amid tonal zones and atonal lacerations - a metaphor of the protagonist's false innocence – is characterised by its daring orchestration. Noseda, a passionate interpreter of the late Romantic and twentieth-century repertoire, says: "Salome is a thrilling opera. More than a century after its first performance, it has lost nothing of its seductive and morbid charm. For today's audience it no longer has that emotional monstrosity perceived by its initial spectators in the early Twentieth-Century, as we already know what to expect, but its effect is still explosive: it invades you with its wild eroticism, sensuality and existential unease. It is a wonderful work, very difficult to render, requiring great technical skill, to say nothing of the difficulty for the singers: a true mountain to climb. If Salome had not existed, the history of opera would be very different: we would not have seen Wozzeck and Lulu by Berg, the Triptych and Turandot by Puccini. Salome is Strauss's first operatic masterpiece with which he really had the courage to be bold".
In the five performances of the opera (15, 18, 20, 22 and 25 February) the title star is the Swedish soprano Erika Sunnegårdh: internationally acclaimed and in demand among conductors such as Rattle, Chailly and Luisi, achieving her absolute pinnacle in the role of Salome. The tenor Robert Brubaker plays Herod, a role that he has taken to major European and US stages, always receiving rave reviews. Herodias is played by the mezzo-soprano Doris Soffel, a world-famous celebrated artist with over sixty record productions and a repertoire ranging from Mozart to contemporary music; she has played the role in over twelve different productions, even in semi-staging form at the BBC Proms. Jochanaan is played by the baritone Tommi Hakala: already winner of the prestigious BBC Singer of the World Competition, he is an artist with strong links to the Regio, with successful performances in operas by Humperdinck, Zemlinsky and Verdi. The cast is completed by: the tenor Enrico Casari (Narraboth), the mezzo-soprano Michaela Kapustová (a page), the tenors Gregory Bonfatti, Matthias Stier, Saverio Pugliese and Yaroslav Abaimov (respectively, first, second, third and fourth Jew), the bass Horst Lamnek (fourth Jew), the baritone Roberto Abbondanza (first Nazarene), the tenor Joshua Sanders (second Nazarene), the basses Andrea Comelli and Federico Benetti (first and second soldier), Desaret Lika/Enrico Bava (a Cappadocian), the mezzo-sopranos Daniela Valdenassi/Raffaella Riello (a slave).
Salome is a one-act opera by Richard Strauss taken from the homonymous poem by Oscar Wilde in the German translation by Hedwig Lachmann. It was performed on 9 December 1905 at the Semperoper in Dresden, enjoying a resounding success. The story is set in the palace of Herod in Jerusalem; Salome, fascinated by the prophet Jochanaan, has just one wish: to kiss those sensual lips that predict the advent of a Messiah and that condemn the corrupt society of her stepfather, Herod Antipas, the tetrarch of Judea. Jochanaan rejects Salome and curses her; in the meantime, Herod, drunk and lustful, begs his stepdaughter to dance for him. Salome agrees but asks for Jochanaan's head on a silver platter. Herod yields, Salome performs the dance of the seven veils and the prophet is beheaded. In the last powerful scene, Salome kisses the prophet's severed head; a ray of moonlight illuminates the kiss while a horrified Herod orders his stepdaughter to be killed.
The show lasts for a total of about an hour and forty-five minutes. The opera will be presented to the public on Wednesday 14 February at 5:30pm, at Piccolo Regio Puccini with a conference entitled: La voce diabolica dell’innocenza, by Andrea Estero. Entrance is free. The First Performance of the opera will be broadcast live by Rai-Radio3 on Thursday 15 February at 8pm, broadcast conducted by Susanna Franchi. Tickets on sale at the Teatro Regio Ticket Office, Piazza Castello 215 - Tel. 011.8815.241/242, at Infopiemonte-Torinocultura, in the Vivaticket sales outlets, online at and by telephone at no. 011.8815.270. For eighteen year olds wishing to use the Bonus Cultura al Regio, the ticket cost is €25, with a further ticket being available for €1. Info - Tel. 011.8815.557. For further information: and
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Turin, 7 February 2018
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