Opera Scotland

Trovatore 2004Hanover Staatsoper

Read more about the opera Trovatore

Edinburgh's major visiting company in 2004 was from Germany, but a Festival newcomer, the Hanover State Opera. In a mere four performances they presented the work of three of Europe's most controversial 'concept' direction teams. The single performance of Il trovatore, never presented at a previous Festival, was directed by the never-dull Catalan Calixto Bieito, whose production of Celestina for Birmingham Rep was also seen at the Festival. Peter Konwitschny's production was of Nono's massive Al gran sole carico d'amore, while Jossi Wieler and Sergio Morabito took a fresh look at Pelléas et Mélisande, given two performances to end the visit. The final opera was Gluck's Orfeo ed Euridice, presented by Opera North in a co-production with Emio Greco I PC. There were five operas given in concert at the Usher Hall. A stimulating series gave a survey of the three major Weber operas - Der Freischütz, Euryanthe and Oberon. The first two had not been seen in Edinburgh in half a century. There was an excellent Bartók evening, including Duke Bluebeard's Castle. The final offering saw a vintage cast assembled for Strauss' Capriccio.

The Hanover company came to Edinburgh with three productions by controversial directors of the modern school - the Wieler / Morabito pairing, Peter Konwitschny, and, here, Calixto Bieito. Most examples of the Catalan's work seen in Edinburgh took the form of drama, rather than opera, with Birmingham Rep this year giving eleven performances of the Spanish classic Celestina that helped make up for the less than entrancing Hamlet the year before. To give only one performance of such a popular work as Trovatore in a staging that might prove a talking point seemed a bizarre miscalculation. The big clash of the evening, inevitable at such a festival, was with an all-Bartók night in the Usher Hall. Ilan Volkov conducted his BBC Scottish Symphony in a programme that ended with the wonderful Petra Lang and John Relyea in Duke Bluebeard's Castle. In addition, the Perth-born virtuoso Steven Osborne was playing the 3rd piano concerto. As it was, the most positive aspect of the Trovatore seemed to be the magnificent performance of Azucena by the little-known, but charismatic, mezzo Leandra Overmann. Fortunately she would return in 2006 for a concert performance of Elektra.

Performance Cast

Ferrando captain of Di Luna's guard

Hans-Peter Scheidegger

Leonora a Duchess, lady-in-waiting to the Princess of Aragon

Francesca Scaini

Count di Luna a young noble of Aragon

Tito You

Manrico a chieftain under the Prince of Biscay

Ki-Chun Park

Azucena a Biscayan gypsy woman

Leandra Overmann

Performance DatesTrovatore 2004

Map List

Festival Theatre, Edinburgh | Edinburgh

23 Aug, 19.15

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