-The 2021 Donizetti Opera Festival programme has just been announced – this is the most important world event dedicated to the Bergamo composer. Its musical director, Riccardo Frizza, is enthusiastic about the 2021 edition, in which he will be conducting L’elisir d’amore with Javier Camarena in the lead role. Other highlights for Frizza in the upcoming season include the opening of the season at the Teatro Real in Madrid with La Cenerentola and his return to the Metropolitan in New York with Lucia di Lammermoor.
“The last Donizetti Opera Festival was during the pandemic and it was complicated,” Riccardo Frizza affirms from Paris, where he is in rehearsals for the production of La Sonnambula which is opening at the Théâtre des Champs-Elysées on the 15th June. Despite the restrictions imposed during this difficult situation in Italy, the Festival created an online TV channel specifically for the 2020 programme (with some necessary tweaks, of course, that were caused by the pandemic), making this the first event to offer performances from a theatre that was closed to the public. “It is very exciting to see that the extremely hard work we did over those months that were so difficult for the Festival and for the country was worth it. Fortunately, this year we are looking forward to the future with light and hope, and a festival in which we will see our faithful audiences coming to the recently renovated Teatro Donizetti”, explains Frizza, the musical director of the festival. The event will take place between the 18th November and the 5th December, and Frizza will take the helm of the first opera, L’elisir d’amore, with a cast in which the Mexican tenor Javier Camarena will shine in the role of Nemorino in a new production directed by Frederic Wake-Walker (performances are on the 19th and 28th November and the 5th December).
The Donizetti Festival will open with an “operashow” including fragments of Donizetti, Offenbach, Rossini and Mozart operas, with dramaturgy by Alberto Mattioli and Francesco Micheli –the Festival director. A highlight will be the participation of the Bergamo-born bass Alex Esposito and artists from the Bottega Donizetti academy (18th November). The opera programming includes two more titles: La fille du régimen, with the Spanish Sara Blanch as Marie alongside John Osborn as Tonio and Paolo Bordogna as Sulpice, in a new production directed by Ernesto Doñas (21st and 26th November and 3rd December). The third opera on the programme is by Simon Mayr –Donizetti’s tutor– and is entitled Medea in Corinto. The cast includes Roberto Lorenzi, Michele Angelini and Carmela Remigio, the director is Francesco Micheli and it will be conducted by Jonathan Brandani (20th and 27th November and 4th December).
All of the opera titles will be, as usual, interpreted from the new critical editions. A recital by Sara Blanch and Paolo Bordogna in the Teatro Sociale, Bergamo, completes the programme.
As well as conducting in the Donizetti Festival in the 2021-2022 season, Riccardo Frizza will also open the season at the Teatro Real in Madrid with Rossini’s La Cenerentola and will return to the New York Metropolitan with Donizetti’s Lucia di Lammermoor in April 2022, among other engagements.