Magazine article Musical Opinion

Welsh National Opera's 2003/04 Season

Magazine article Musical Opinion

Welsh National Opera's 2003/04 Season

Article excerpt

What's new? The burning question is always the same. This autumn, Parsifal and Il trovatore are new to Welsh National Opera, though not brand new, having originated at Opera North. What makes the WNO Parsifal special is conductor Vladimir Jurowski. The production, which opens the season in Cardiff on 27 September, will mark the Wagner debut of the brilliant Glyndebourne music director, whose Queen of Spades was such a stunning success for WNO three years ago. The Romanian Silviu Purcarete directs and the American tenor Stephen O'Mara sings the title role.

WNO has a long and noble tradition of Verdi productions and, indeed, of Il trovatore. Peter Watson's staging features David Rendall as Manrico and Patricia Bardon as Azucena, with the Russian soprano Elena Lasovskaya; winner of the 2002 Rimsky-Korsakov competition in St Petersburg, making her British debut as Leonora. To complete the autumn lineup, the fine young baritone James Rutherford returns as Figaro in the revival of The Marriage of Figaro. Rinaldo Alessandrini conducts.

The Spring 2004 Season will see the first new production created by WNO's young music director Tugan Sokhiev: namely Tchaikovsky's Eugene Onegin. Sokhiev recently assisted Valery Gergiev in the Kirov's production of Onegin and Gergiev's sister Larissa Gergieva will be vocal coach for the WNO production. Onegin will be directed by James Macdonald with Amanda Roocroft making her role debut as Tatyana. The two Russian baritones, Vladimir Moroz and Vladislaw Sulimski, will share the role of Onegin, while Marius Brenciu, winner of the 2001 Singer of the World competition in Cardiff, will sing Lensky. …

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