Welsh National Opera continues the exploration of opera with themed seasons in 2013/14 turning the spotlight onto an infamous royal dynasty, women behaving badly and religion.
Eight new productions including a World premiere and a British premiere will be performed as well as a special Welsh National Youth Opera celebration of Benjamin Britten’s centenary year.
The Orchestra of WNO will also perform in the International Concert Series at St David’s Hall in Cardiff and at residencies at Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.
The Tudors - a trilogy of Donizetti works based on the lives of Anne Boleyn, Mary Stuart and Queen Elizabeth I. New productions of Anna Bolena, Maria Stuarda and Roberto Devereux will be realised by young directors Alessandro Talevi and Rudolf Frey.
Fallen Women - this theme focuses on the intense struggle and subsequent downfall of women who dared seek the least vestige of independence. Both new productions of Manon Lescaut and Henze’s Boulevard Solitude are by the acclaimed Polish film, theatre and opera director Mariusz Trelinski.
Faith – the power, the meaning and the consequence of religious belief will be explored in a new production of Nabucco directed by Rudolf Frey. The UK premiere of Stuttgart Opera’s production of Moses un Aron will be performed in Cardiff, Birmingham and at the Royal Opera House in London.
British Firsts – WNO’s series of contemporary new opera will continue with the British Premiere of Usher House, Gordon Getty’s interpretation of Poe’s The Fall of the House of Usher. This will be performed together with Debussy’s La Chute de la Maison Usher. Both productions will be directed by David Pountney.
Benjamin Britten’s centenary year will be marked with a new production of Paul Bunyan by Welsh National Youth Opera featuring Only Boys Aloud.
WNO’s Music Director Lothar Koenigs will conduct the Orchestra of Welsh National Opera in three concerts at St David’s Hall in Cardiff.
The concerts will feature music inspired by this season’s themes including works by Vaughn Williams, Britten, Berg, Wagner, Bruckner and Messiaen. The orchestra will be joined by Mezzo soprano Sarah Connolly for the concert on Friday 17 January.
Singers in the 13/14 season include Katharine Goeldner, Judith Howarth, Bruce Sledge, Christine Rice, Gary Griffiths, Alexandra Deshorties, David Kempster, Chiara Taigi, Rainer Trost and Mary Elizabeth Williams.