Starting new year there are a lot of reviews of 2015 and just a few forward looking insights, thus I decided to put together my wishlist (or hopeful list) while absorbed in listening to Jonas Kaufmann singing Puccini at La Scala.
Main unknowns yet are Munich Festspiele and Salzburg Festspiele ticket allocations which should come through in a next few months thus defining plans for summer. So, currently the list is not too long:
End-January, Werther with Elīna Garanča and Piotr Beczala at Opera Bastille (Opera National de Paris). Elīna is superb Charlotte, and Beczala did great job as Werther in Salzburg last year, it will be a pleasure to see and hear them both together.
End of February, it will be time for another Il Trovatore, now at Opera National de Paris, mainly due to cast with Marcelo Alvarez, Ludovic Tezier and Ekaterina Semenchuk – and Hui He as Leonora (did not get chance for Netrebko here, but 2 Il Trovatore’s in 2015 with her might be sufficient fro time being). Hui He was very impressive in Verona, I believe she will be worth the trip in such outstanding cast.
As Alvis Hermanis is always surprisingly unpredictable, I have been very keen to see his new I Due Foscari at Teatro alla Scala, and this has been my New Year gift to myself – going there in March. Also, will love to return to Milan, and breathtaking loft with Airbnb has been already booked next to the theater.
April will start with triple dose of Richard Strauss in Berlin: Die ägyptische Helena, Salome and Elektra. It is surprising choice even for myself, but this decision has been conscious as I would like to learn more about Strauss and try to get more in-depth understanding of his music. All three operas are relatively new for me, Salome is production directed by Claus Guth, and Elektra will be performed by Evelyn Herlitzius, whom I have tried to catch for some time already.
July will start in Munich if all goes as planned, to cover Tosca (dream cast, if lucky, with Anja Harteros, Jonas Kaufmann, Bryn Tefel), Lohengrin (Klaus Florian Vogt, Evelyn Herlitzius, Markus Eiche), La Boheme (Sonya Yoncheva), La Juive (directed by Calixto Bieito, sung by Kristine Opolais, Roberto Alagna, Alexandra Kurzak), South Pole (production by Hans Neuenfels, sung by Rolando Villazón, Tara Erraught), to continue with trip to Baden-Baden for Die Walkyre with Jonas Kaufmann.
July will also see me in Bregenz for both Hamlet and Turandot. The trip will let to see both open air production of Turandot on the lake stage, as well as smaller scale Hamlet (completely new experience for me).
My annual trip to Salzburg is planned again for mid-August and possibly will include Die Liebe der Danae (some more Richard Strauss, production by Alvis Hermanis, sung by Krassimira Stoyanova and Tomasz Konieczny), Faust (Piotr Beczala, Ildar Abdrazakov, Maria Agresta, Tarra Erraught), Cosi fan tutte (Angela Brower and Michael Volle) and Don Giovanni ( Luca Pisaroni, Ildebrando D’Arcangelo) plus some classical orchestra concert performances.
There are some non-finalized plans, looking into several more operas in Munich, Nuremberg, and, possibly another trip to The Met either in spring or season opening. There will also be some fun locally in Riga, looking forward to prima of Macbeth in March, some more interesting performances in preparation for Riga Opera Festival and Sigulda Opera Festival.
While writing the post with my wishlist, have started the year in true operatic mood: on top of exquisite evening with Jonas Kaufmann and Puccini, have listened to radio broadcast live from The Met of the Pearl Fishers – with Diana Damrau, Mattew Polenzani and Mariusz Kwiecien, – now very eager for Met in HD on January 16th – and suggest you to go as well.
Looks like there will be many exciting trips and unforgettable operas! Keep fingers crossed to help me get them all, -and stay tuned for reviews!