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Gaetano Donizetti

Don Pasquale

Wiener Staatsoper, 2016 | 150 min.


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  • Gaetano Donizetti  |  Musik
  • Irina Brook  |  Director
  • Noëlle Ginefri-Corbel  |  Bühne
  • Sylvie Martin-Hyszka  |  Costumes
  • Arnaud Jung  |  Light Design
  • Martin Buczko  |  Choreography
  • Evelino Pidò  |  Conductor

Evelino Pidò | Conductor

Evelino Pidò recieved his musical training at the Conservatoire in Turin and took courses for orchestral conducting at the Musikhochschule in Vienna. His international career began with the opening of the Three Worlds Festival in Melbourne with Madama Butterfly; it was followed by conducting engagements at the Sydney Opera House. In 1993 Evelino Pidò gave his debuts at the Santa Fe Festival in America, at the Los Angeles Opera and the Royal Opera House in London. Other engagements have taken him to the festival in Aix-en-Provence, at the Opéra Bastille in Paris, the Metropolitan Opera in New York, at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées in Paris, the Opéra National de Lyon and the Grand Théâtre in Geneva. At the Royal Opera House, he conducted La cenerentola and Lucia di Lammermoor, at the Teatro Real La gioconda and at the Met La sonnambula. He collaborates with numerous renowned orchestras including the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra in London, the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande and many others. In 2011, he gave his debut at the Vienna State Opera with La Sonnambula. Further performances at the house on the ring include Anna Bolena, Roberto Devereux, Simon Boccanegra and Adriana Lecouvreur.

Michele Pertusi | Don Pasquale

Michele Pertusi is a sought-after bass singer on the world´s leading opera and concert stages. He is a regular guest at the Opera National de Paris, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, La Scala, the New York Metropolitan Opera, at the Rossini-Festival in Pesaro, in Rome, Munich, Berlin, Zurich, Madrid, Brussels, Madrid, Florence, Bologna, Parma, Venice. Michele Pertusi´s repertoire includes the most important title roles of his fach, for example in Mozart´s Le nozze di Figaro, Cosi fan tutte, Don Giovanni, Rossini´s La cenerentola, Semiramide, Il turco in Italia, L’italiana in Algeri, Le siege de Corinthe, Guillaume Tell, Bellini´s La sonnambula, Donizetti´s Anna Bolena, Lucrezia Borgia, Lucia di Lammermoor, Don Pasquale, Verdi´s Oberto, Conte di San Bonifacio, Attila, I Lombardi alla prima crociata, Falstaff. He made his debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in March 1999 as Sir Giorgio in I puritani and has since then also sung Guillaume Tell, Mustafa (L’italiana in Algeri), Conte d’Almaviva (Nozze di Figaro), Rodolfo (La sonnambula), Basilio (Il barbiere di Siviglia), Don Alfonso (Lucrezia Borgia) here.


Juan Diego Flórez | Ernesto

Juan Diego Flórez was born in Lima (Peru) and studied in his hometown as well as at the Curtis Institute in Philadelphia. In 1996, he gave his opera debut in Matilde di Shabran at the Rossini-Festival in Pesaro. Since then, the tenor is one of the most sought after singers of his style. He has celebrated triumphs in recent years among others at the Milan Scala, the New York Metropolitan Opera, the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, as well as in music centres like Paris, Florence, Bologna, Genua, Turin, Rome, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chica­go, Washington, Munich, Barcelona, Madrid and the Salzburger Festspielen. Since 2001, Juan Diego Flórez has an exclusive contract with DECCA. Several of his recordings have one many prizes, and in addition, he has won numerous official rewards. Juan Diego Flórez gave his debut at the Wiener Staatsoper in 1999 as Conte d’Almaviva (Il barbiere di Siviglia) and has since also sung Rinuccio (Gianni Schicchi), Lindoro (L’italiana in Algeri), Arturo (I puritani), Elvino (La sonnambula), Tonio (La Fille du régiment) and Ne­morino (L’elisir d’amore). He is an Austrian Chamber singer.

Adam Plachetka | Malatesta

Bass baritone Adam Plachetka was born in 1985 and completed his studies at the Conservatory of his hometown Prague. Apart from a number of national competitions, he won the International Antonin Dvorak singing competition. In 2005 he made his debut at the Prague National Theatre, where he for example performed as Don Giovanni, Publio (La clemenza di Tito), Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro), Nardo (La finta giardiniera), Argante (Rinaldo) and Guglielmo (Cosi fan tutte). He performed Papageno (Die Zauberflöte) at the Prague State Opera as well as Don Basilio (Il barbiere di Siviglia).

Engagements led Adam Plachetka to the Salzburg Festival, to the Bayerische Staatsoper, to Glyndebourne, to the Royal Opera House Covent Garden London, to La Scala Milan and to the Berlin Staatsoper.

Since 2010/2011 he is member of ensemble of the Wiener Staatsoper and has for example sung Schaunard, Basilio, Melisso (Alcina), Masetto and Don Giovanni, Haly (L’italiana in Algeri), Graf Dominik, Figaro (Le nozze di Figaro), Gugliemo, Publio, Dulcamara, Hercule (Alceste), Alidoro here.

Valentina Naforniţa | Norina

Valentina Naforniţă was born in Glodeni (Moldova) and studied at the Stefan Neaga Music College in Chisinau and at the University of Music in Bucharest. As a member of the opera studio of this institution she for example performed as Norina in Gaetano Donizetti´s Don Pasquale and as Adina in Donizetti´s L’elisir d’amore, furthermore as Lauretta in Giacomo Puccini´s Gianni Schicchi. She has won several international competitions, among them the Young Opera Singers of Europe competition, the Rumanian Orange Prize for Young Musicians and the Hariclea Darclee competition. In 2011 the young singer won the renowned BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition – she not only won first prize, but also the Dame Joan Sutherland Audience Award and was a finalist for the lied prize. Since 2011 she is member of the ensemble of the Wiener Staatsoper and performed for example as Lisa (La sonnambula), Papagena, Ein junger Hirt (Tannhäuser), Clorinda (La cenerentola), Najade (Ariadne auf Naxos), Marzelline (Fidelio), Stimme vom Himmel (Don Carlo), Musetta (La Bohème) here.

The old, wealthy, but miserly bachelor Don Pasquale wants to marry off his nephew Ernesto: to a wealthy woman. Ernesto however prefers the young, destitute widow Norina, who loves him. Although Don Pasquale has never seen Norina, he rejects the marriage – and throws Ernesto unceremoniously out of his house. Despondent, Ernesto writes a farewell letter to his beloved Norina. But Norina will not give Ernesto up... 

Don Pasquale's new plan is now get married himself – and his friend Dr. Malatesta is to help him in this endeavour. Malatesta however sticks by Ernesto and contrives a complex plot in which Norina and Ernesto have a part to play: Norina is to be presented to the bachelor as Malatesta's well brought up sister Sofronia, who grew up in a convent. Don Pasquale is enchanted by this silent, virtuous creature – and enters into sham marriage arranged by Malatesta (but which Don Pasquale believes to be real). Immediately after the wedding, Sofronia (= Norina) changes her behaviour. She turns into a lavish, loveless, snappish shrew who terrorizes Pasquale and is – obviously – deceiving him. To get her out of the house again, Don Pasquale wants to give his nephew Ernesto not only a rich dowry, but also a home again, along with Norina (whose real identity is still unknown to him). Sofronia's true identity is then revealed. He has to learn his lesson: a man of the older generation should not try to court a younger woman...