Four New Productions Lead Los Angeles Music Center Opera Into New Territory For Its Second Season
1987-88 Season To Offer 36 Performances Of 7 Operas
Four new productions – including Prokofiev’s rarely performed “The Fiery Angel,” Rossini’s “La Cenerentola,” Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde” (with designs by David Hockney), and Britten’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” – will highlight the Second Season of the Los Angeles Music Center Opera, according to an announcement by the company’s general director Peter Hemmings. The season, which opens September 8, also features the first U.S. performances of Jonathan Miller’s production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado,” plus stagings of Verdi’s “Macbeth” and Puccini’s “La Boheme.” (See attached schedule.)
The 1987-88 season is one of stars – singers, conductors, directors and designers. Placido Domingo plays Rodolfo in “La Boheme;” Marilyn Zschau is obsessed by “The Fiery Angel;” while Frederica von Stade, Francois Loup, and Alan Titus are leads in “La Cenerentola.” William Johns and Jeannine Altmeyer are “Tristan und Isolde;” Justino Diaz and Mara Zampieri head the cast for “Macbeth;” and Hollywood’s Dudley Moore is teamed with D’oyly-Carte veteran Donald Adams in “The Mikado.”
The roster of conductors inclues Zubin Mehta, who leads the company in “Tristan und Isolde.” Sir Neville Marriner conducts “La Cenerentola,” Lawrence Foster “La Boheme” and “The Fiery Angel,” and Placido Domingo “Macbeth.”
This fall, Frank Corsaro directs “La Cenerentola” and Andrei Serban “The Fiery Angel,” and later this season, Jonathan Miller directs “Tristan und Isolde” and “The Mikado.” The Mark Taper Forum’s Gordon Davidson will make his LAMCO debut with “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”
As in its Inaugural Season, the company will be joined by the augmented Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra and the Los Angeles Master Chorale, and teamed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic for “Tristan und Isolde.”
Performance Dates and Times
“La Boheme” (September 8, 11, 13,and 23): The season begins September 8-26 at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion with three works presented in conjunction with the first Los Angeles Festival. First is Giacomo Puccini’s beloved “La Boheme” conducted by Lawrence Foster, with Placido Domingo, Karen Huffstodt, and Thomas Hampson. Christopher Alden directs Jean-Pierre Ponnelle’s production.
“The Fiery Angel” (September 16, 19, 22, and 25): Although Sergei Prokofiev’s masterpiece “The Fiery Angel” is little-known (and was never produced during his lifetime), opera-goers will recognize themes in its grandly symphonic score from the composer’s 3rd Symphony. A dramatic table of black magic, consuming passion, and diabolical possession, LAMCO’s staging is directed by Andrei Serban, designed by Robert Israel, and co-produced with the English National Opera and Geneva Opera, with support from the Los Angeles Festival. Lawrence Foster conducts, with Marilyn Zschau as Renata and Roger Roloff as Ruprecht heading the cast.
“La Cenerentola” (September 18, 20, 24, and 26): This new production of “La Cenerentola,” Giachino Rossini’s enchanting retelling of the Cinderella story, stars Frederica von Stade as Angelina, with Dalmacio Gonzalez as Ramiro, Alan Titus as Dandini, and Francois Loup as Magnifico. Sir Neville Marriner conducts this zesty “opera buffa” staged by Frank Corsaro and designed by Franco Colavecchia.
“Tristan und Isolde” (December 6, 9, 12, 15, 18, and 20: The season continues at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion with Richard Wagner’s “Tristan und Isolde.” Produced in association with the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the new LAMCO production of this landmark opera will be conducted by Zubin Mehta, directed by Jonathan Miller, and designed by David Hockney. The cast includes William Johns and Jeannine Altmeyer in the title roles, with Florence Quivar (Brangane), Roger Roloff (Kurwenal), Martti Talvela (Mark), Elliot Palay (Melot), and Jonathan Mack (Sailor/Shepherd).
“Macbeth” (December 11, 14, 17, and 21): Placido Domingo will make his LAMCO conducting debut in Giussepe Verdi’s “Macbeth.” Directed by Elijah Moshinsky, designed by Wolfram Skalicki, and co-produced with the Canadian Opera, “Macbeth” will feature Justino Diaz in the title role, Martti Talvela as Banquo, and Mara Zampieri, making her American stage debut, as Lady Macbeth.
“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” (Feburary 16, 17, 19, and 21): LAMCO moves into the Wiltern Theatre in February and March for Benjamin Britten’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and Gilbert and Sullivan’s “The Mikado,” offered as part of the UK/LA: A Celebration of British Arts. Britten’s joyous opera, infrequently staged in the U.S., will be directed in this new production by Gordon Davidson, Artistic Director of the Mark Taper Forum, and designed by Douglas W. Schmidt and Lewis Brown. Company Associate Director Robert Duerr will lead the cast which includes Jeffrey Gall (Oberon), Virginia Sublett (Titania), Peter Van Derrick (Theseus), Stephanie Vlahos (Hippolyta), Jonathan Mack (Lysander), Rodney Gilfrey (Demetrius), Alice Baker (Hermia), Angelique Burzynski (Helena), and Michael Gallup (Bottom).
“The Mikado” (March 10-20): The Los Angeles Music Center Opera’s Second Season will conclude with Gilbert and Sullivan’s popular operetta, “The Mikado.” In the first American performances of this production, co-produced wit the English National Opera and Houston Grand Opera, director Jonathan Miller transports the riotous antics to an English seaside resort in the stylishly decadent Twenties. Hollywood film star Dudley Moore (Ko-Ko) and D’Oyly-Carte veteran Donald Adams (Pooh-Bah) will lead the romp that also features Michael Smith (Nanki-Poo), Kenneth Cox (The Mikado), Marvellee Cariaga (Katisha), and Dale Wendel (Yum-Yum). Robert Duerr conducts
Where To Go
With the exception of “The Fiery Angel,” which will be performed in English, all foreign language operas will be performed in the original languages with projected supertitles in English.
For ticket information on the Los Angeles Music Center Opera call (213) 972-7211.
Photo Courtesy of Los Angeles Music Center