OPEN AIR OPERA PEREMIERE
opera in Italian with Hungarian subtitles
28 and 30 July 2017 (Friday and Sunday), 8 pm
Margaret Island Open-Air Stage
The Budapest Summer Festival is proud to present one of Verdi's most popular romantic operas in this year's programme: Il trovatore! Director László Vámos sets the stage for a traditional performance while we step into a powerful, yet timely visual world created by Attila Csikós. The main leads will be played by international opera stars – a Szabad Tér Theatre tradition that aims at bringing singers from abroad to Margaret Island Open-air Stage providing them with the opportunity to give their debut to the Hungarian audience.
The production stars young Azerbaijani soprano Dinara Alieva as Leonora and famous Italian tenor Riccardo Massi as Manrico. World-renowned mezzo-soprano Ildikó Komlósi will perform Azucena, while Mihály Kálmándy, the internationally renowned baritone, will sing Count Luna for the first time in this staging.
Verdi's most dramatic masterpiece – best-known for its musical theme within the ‘gypsy choir’ – takes us on an exhilarating journey of passion, vengeance and murder.
Presented by Open Air Theatre in collaboration with the Hungarian State Opera House
In lead roles:
Count Luna: Mihály Kálmándy
Leonora: Dinara Alieva (AZE)
Manrico: Riccardo Massi (IT)
Azucena: Ildikó Komlósi
Featuring: Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, Chorus and Ballet of Hungarian State Opera House
Composer: Giuseppe Verdi
Libretto: Salvatore Cammarano
Hungarian subtitles: Ágnes Romhányi
Scenic Design: Attila Csikós
Costume Design: Nelly Vágó
Chorus director: Kálmán Strausz
Színpadra állította: Sándor Palcsó Jr.
Conductor: Balázs Kocsár
Drirector: László Vámos
Described as “a singer who possesses the gift of heaven” by soprano Montserrat Caballé, Azerbaijani soprano Dinara Alieva – winner of the 2007 international Maria Callas competition – joined the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow as soloist in 2010, where she has sung lead and supporting roles in many seminal works of the operatic literature. She has since appeared at major opera houses and concert halls throughout the world – including the Vienna State Opera, Berlin State Opera, German Opera Berlin, and Bavarian State Opera, among others. She has performed under the batons of conductors such as Yuri Temirkanov, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Vladimir Spivakov, Yuri Bashmet, Constantine Orbelian, Donald Runnicles, Giuseppe Sabbatini, and Marcello Rota.
Following a triumphant 2011 debut with the Vienna State Opera as Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, she returned to the house as Violetta in La Traviata and Tatyana in Eugene Onegin. Highlights of seasons through 2015 include the roles of Mimi in La Bohème with the German Opera Berlin and a concert performance of La Traviata at the International Prague PROMS festival. An accomplished recitalist and concert performer, she has appeared at venues including New York’s Carnegie Hall, Salle Gaveau in Paris and Cadogan Hall in London.
Ms Alieva’s discography on Delos includes Alieva and Antonenko, a CD of arias and duets with Latvian tenor Aleksandrs Antonenko and the Kaunas City Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Constantine Orbelian; a DVD, Dinara Alieva in Moscow, as well as Pace Mio Dio, a CD of Italian opera arias. Her first recording, Russian Songs and Arias, is on the Naxos label.
Italian tenor Riccardo Massi has rapidly achieved international recognition as one of the most exciting and accomplished interpreters of the Italian spinto repertoire, earning accolades worldwide for his interpretations of Puccini’s and Verdi’s heroes. As a specialist in the handling of ancient and medieval weapons, before pursuing his passion for opera, Massi enjoyed a career as a stuntman; working in several films including Martin Scorsese’s “Gangs of New York”, ABC’s “Empire”, and HBO’s “Rome”.
The 2015/2016 season sees Massi’s returns to the Royal Opera House Covent Garden as Cavaradossi in Tosca opposite Angela Gheorghiu, at Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour (Opera Australia) as Calaf in Turandot, the Melbourne Arts Center as Rodolfo in Luisa Miller (role debut), the Teatro Regio di Torino as Radamès in Aida, and the Bregenzer Festspiele as Calaf, in addition to performances as Milio in Leoncavallo’s Zaza at Barbican Hall, Calaf at the Zurich Opera House and as Cavaradossi at the Semperoper Dresden.
Engagements of the 2016/2017 season include his role debut as Des Grieux in new production of Manon Lescaut at the Bolshoi Theatre Moscow and at the Berlin State Opera, his debut at the New National Theatre Tokyo as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly, his return to The Metropolitan Opera in New York as Radamès in Aida and Calaf at the Cologne Opera House.
Highlights of recent seasons include his 2014 Royal Opera House Covent Garden debut as Cavaradossi under the musical direction of Placido Domingo, his debut in the title role of Andrea Chénier at the Royal Swedish Opera, a 2014 gala concert with soprano Anna Netrebko at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, Tosca at the Sydney Opera House, Verdi’s Requiem at the Grand Théâtre de Genève, Un ballo in maschera at the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels, Don Alvaro in La forza del destino at the Sydney Opera House, Don José in Carmen at Deutsche Oper Berlin, Pollione at the Terme di Caracalla, and debuts as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly at the Norwegian National Opera, Manrico in Il trovatore in Toronto and Calaf in Turandot opposite Nina Stemme at the Royal Swedish Opera.
Other career highlights include his 2012 Metropolitan Opera debut as Radamès in Aida (the same role with which he also debuted at the Houston Grand Opera in 2013), his debut as Enzo Grimaldi in a concert performance of La Gioconda at the Concertgebeouw opposite Eva Maria Westbroek, and debuts at Munich’s Bayerische Staatsoper, Opéra Grand Avignon and the Berlin Staatsoper as Cavaradossi.
Massi developed his vocal technique in Rome with David Holst, who has also been his sole mentor. He was invited to join the Accademia della Scala, after which he made his operatic debut in December of 2009 as Radamès in Aida in Salerno under the baton of Daniel Oren.
Portrait: Dinara Alieva, Komlósi Ildikó, Kálmándy Mihály, Ricardo Massi