Teatro Regio di Torino: The Magic Flute

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by OPERA Charm Team
March 27, 2023

The eternal quest for love, according to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
For the first time in Turin, the immersive experience was signed by Suzanne Andrade and Barrie Kosky

Teatro Regio, March 31st to April 14th

BIOGRAPHY

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INTERVIEW

From March 31st to April 14th, the magic of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s The Magic Flute (Die Zauberflöte) is on stage in the dreamlike creation – for the first time in Turin – signed by Suzanne Andrade and Barrie Kosky. Mozart’s suggestions mingle with the surprising projections inspired by silent films, with which the performers interact, creating an immersive experience that arouses the audience’s enthusiasm everywhere. Maestro Sesto Quatrini tackles the Mozart score with charisma and his usual precision, leading the Teatro Regio Orchestra and Chorus and two casts of young performers with an international profile. The direction is taken for the occasion by Tobias Ribitzki, the animations are by Paul Barritt, the conception is by “1927” (Suzanne Andrade and Paul Barritt), and the sets and costumes bear the signature of Esther Bialas. Maestro Andrea Secchi leads the chorus as usual. The opera is performed in the original German language (with Italian subtitles) in the production by the Komische Oper Berlin.

In the role of Pamina are Ekaterina Bakanova and Gabriela Legun; in that of Tamino, Joel Prieto and Giovanni Sala; Alessio Arduini and Gurgen Baveyan play Papageno; the Queen of the Night by Serena Sáenz, Beate Ritter and Danae Kontora; In-Sung Sim is Sarastro (in addition to the speaker and a vocalist); Amélie Hois is Papagena. Completing the cast are Lucrezia Drei, Ksenia Chubunova and Margherita Sala (first, second and third dames), Thomas Cilluffo as Monostatos and Enzo Peroni and Rocco Lia (first and second armiger). The three children are soloists in the children’s voice choir, instructed by maestro Claudio Fenoglio and are Viola Contartese, Flavia Pedilarco, Alice Gossa, Costanza Falcinelli, Isabel Marta Sodano and Blanca Zorec.

On Tuesday, March 28th, at 6 p.m. at the Piccolo Regio Puccini, an appointment with the Conference-concert, a new format for presenting the operas to the public, conducted by journalist Susanna Franchi, which combines music and singing with the protagonists’ stories. For the occasion, artists Sesto Quatrini, Ekaterina Bakanova and Alessio Arduini will be guests. In addition, piano accompaniment by maestro Giannandrea Agnoletto is scheduled for performances by Matteo Mollica baritone, Francesco Lucii tenor, Rocco Lia bass, Irina Bogdanova soprano and Amélie Hois soprano (the last four are Artists of the Regio Ensemble).

In a fairyland where it is difficult to discern good from evil, Prince Pamino goes astray and meets a funny feather-covered character named Papageno. The two youngsters, protected by the magical powers of a flute and a music box and aided by two brave girls, Pamina and Papagena, will challenge dark characters and learn to overcome their fears. They will also find love: two marriages will sanction a doubly happy ending. This is the labyrinthine fairy tale told in The Magic Flute, the opera in German that Mozart composed in 1791, a few months before his death. The Magic Flute is the most widely performed German-language opera, one of the ten most famous operas in the world. It is an ageless opera and can be appreciated by an eight-year-old child as well as an 80-year-old. It is full of contradictions, and inconsistencies of story and characters, and mixes fantasy and magic by reaching the deepest human emotions.

On the occasion of the premiere of this truly unique staging, Barrie Kosky (theatre director, Superintendent of the Komische Oper Berlin) described his collaboration with the “1927” group of Suzanne Andrade and Paul Barritt in the conception in this way: “With Suzanne and Paul I share a love for variety, vaudeville, music hall and similar forms of theatre, and of course for silent film. So our Papageno recalls Buster Keaton, Monostato is a bit Nosferatu, and Pamina has something of Louise Brooks in her. But it is more than just a homage to silent film; there are influences from very different fields. It is a combination of live performance and animation that generates a totally new art form. We evoke the world of dreams and nightmares with an aesthetic that recalls the silent film universe.” To this, Paul Barrit (filmmaker, co-creator of “1927” added: “We draw visual inspirations from many eras, from 18th-century copperplate engravings to today’s comic books.” And again Suzanne Andrade (theatre director, performer, co-creator of “1927”): “Our Magic Flute is a journey through different fantasy worlds.” Barrie Kosky again: “Time is dictated by the music, even-especially-in the dialogues, which we condensed and turned into silent film intertitles; the accompanying music we use is by Mozart, from his Fantasies for Piano, this gives a consistent style and rhythm. It’s a silent film by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, so to speak!”; Paul Barrit concludes, “It’s a love story, told like a fairy tale.”

As a reminder, in all evening performances, the audience has the opportunity to enjoy a buffet dinner in the Toro Foyer during intermission: Opera buffet can be purchased online at the cost of €27 or directly on the evening of the performance, at the cashiers in the entrance foyer, for €30.

For the Magic Flute play scheduled for Sunday, April 2nd, at 3 p.m., Bimbi Club is active. The service is for parents and/or grandparents who wish to enjoy the performance, while children (ages 6 to 10) participate in fun singing and dance workshops from 2:30 p.m. until the end of the play. Reservations and packed snacks are recommended. The cost of Bimbi Club is €10, and you must have a ticket for the performance to gain access.

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Alice Lechner

Alice Lechner comes from a music-loving family. Her first encounter with the opera universe was at the tender age of six. The grandeur of the stage productions and costumes, the backstage chatter, and last, but definitely not least, the music left her in awe, beginning with Mozart’s Don Giovanni. The overall feeling that opera awakens in anyone who gets a glimpse into this part of artistic eternity, that each and every day passes the test of time, was what drew her to stay and be a part of this world. The Opera House of Brașov became her second home, and the people who worked there were her second family.

Since then, Alice has devoted her spare time to maximising her musical knowledge through instrumental studies, studying both piano and violin for a short time. In the following years, her number one passion stepped out of the limelight and graciously gave way to Law Studies.
Since 2018 she has been studying Law at “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University in Iași.

Her passion for opera, even if it is no longer her top professional priority in terms of career, it has most definitely become her priority during her free time. Wanting to experience the best of both worlds and extend her musical horizons, she regularly attends opera performances throughout Romania and abroad.
With OPERA Charm Magazine, Alice aims to nurture her creative side to help it flourish and bloom and to discover, alongside the magazine’s readers, the fascinatingly complex world of opera.

Currently, she is an LL.M. in Business Law at “Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University in Iași.

Oana Zamfir

Oana Zamfir is a second year MA student at the “George Enescu” National University of Arts, at the Department of Musicology.

She studied violin for 12 years at the “Stefan Luchian” High School of Art in Botosani, later focusing on the theoretical aspects of music. In 2019 she completed her bachelor studies in Musicology as a student of the National Academy of Music “Gheorghe Dima” in Cluj-Napoca. Her research during 2018-2019 brought to the forefront elements of the archaic ritual within works of composers who activated during the communist period, giving her the opportunity to start a research internship at the “Carl von Ossietzky” University in Germany. In this context, she recorded conversations with members of the Sophie Drinker Institute in Bremen, and had access to documents directly from the Myriam Marbé archive.

Since 2019 she has been a teacher of Music Education and Theoretical Music Studies, making full use of interactive methods in the musical training of students and working, at the same time, with the children’s choir founded in the first year of her activity.

Her interests include pursuing a degree in interior design in 2020.

Alexandru Suciu

Alexandru Suciu inherited his passion for art growing up in a family of several generations of musicians. He began his musical studies at the “Augustin Bena” School of Music in Cluj, where he studied piano and guitar. Even though his main study direction was philological, his passion for music prevailed. He began his academical journey at the Faculty of Letters of the “Babeș-Bolyai” University, studying Comparative literature and English. He continued by studying Opera Singing at the “Gheorghe Dima” National Music Academy. He also graduated the Musical Education section, followed by Artistic Directing at the Musical Performing Arts department.

His multidisciplinary education opened the doors towards research, which is seen both through his participation in national and international conferences and symposia, such as the Salzburg Easter School PhD-forum, organized by the Salzburg Universität or the Silesian Meeting of Young Scholars, organized by the Institute of English at the University of Silesia, as well as the collaboration with Opera Charm Magazine.

During his student years, he won several prizes, including the Grand Prize at the “Paul Constantinescu” National Musical Interpretation Competition, the Romanian Composers and Musicologists’ Union Prize at the same competition, the First Prize and the Schubert Prize at the “Ada Ulubeanu” Competition.

He further developed his artistic skills by specializing in courses and masterclasses held by personalities such as Vittorio Terranova, Giuseppe Sabbatini, Marian Pop, Ines Salazar, Riccardo Zanellato, Paolo Bosisio, Valentina Farcaș and Manuel Lange in contexts such as the Internationale Sommerakademie für Operngesang Deutschlandsberg, Corso Internazionale di Canto Lirico I.M.C. Licata or the Europäische Akademie für Musik und darstellende Kunst Montepulciano. Besides his activity on-stage, he currently teaches Opera Singing Didactics, and Pedagogical Practice within the Department for Teacher Education and Training at the “Gheorghe Dima” National Music Academy.

Cristina Fieraru

Cristina is a 24 year-old Romanian soprano & a student at the National University of Music Bucharest, where she pursues the MA program in Vocal Performance.

She made her debut in Pamina from “Die Zauberflöte” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart at only 19 years old at the Bucharest National Opera House, as a member of the Ludovic Spiess Experimental Opera Studio. Over the years she made her debut in roles such as Contessa d’Almaviva (Le nozze di Figaro), Mimì & Musetta (La Bohème), Alice Ford (Falstaff), Erste Dame (Die Zauberflöte) in her university’s opera productions.
Her passion and experience extends in the field of choral music, too.

She has been part of our dream team since the fall of 2021. For a good period of time she took care of OPERA Charm’s social media and took you on the monthly journey through the history of opera through our Legends rubric – and a few times through the Theaters around the World rubric.

Her little soul rubric – from 2021 to present – is definitely the Conductors of the Future, where, every month, she gives you the chance to meet a young star of the world of conducting and, of course, to find out what’s the most charming feature of opera in these artists’ views.

BIANCA L. NICA

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