-The Spanish mezzo has been invited to perform in the Donizetti opera as part of the celebrations to mark the 150th anniversary of the Teatro Cervantes

February 2020

The Spanish mezzo-soprano María José Montiel has been invited to join in the celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the Teatro Cervantes in Malaga and will return to the Romantic bel-canto genre for the occasion. The outstanding Madrid-born singer will take on the lead female role in Donizetti’s La Favorita, which she performed for the first time in 2002 at the Teatro Comunale in Bolongna (Italy), at that time in the revival of the French version of the opera. This time the Cervantes is presenting the Italian translation, which is the most often performed version of this Donizetti masterpiece. Montiel will be joined on stage by two other internationally renowned Spanish opera singers, the baritone from Malaga, Carlos Álvarez and the tenor Ismael Jordi, from Jerez.

For Montiel, the role of Leonora de Guzmán, known as “the King’s favourite” and the title role of the opera is certainly fascinating. “It is one of the great roles for mezzo-soprano, very difficult due to its wide tessitura, its demanding line and the sense of ornamentation in the fast-paced passages. The music, in any case, is marvellous, with great scenes and arias in the purest bel-canto style. The ingenious vision of the mature and exacting Donizetti breathed new life into the score which had been originally planned for L’ange de Nisida, a project which never came to fruition. On the other hand, as in almost all operas, maybe excepting a few such as Carmen or Sanson et Dalila, the woman is oppressed by male power, an aspect which can be clearly appreciated in La Favorita and which I feel is important to draw attention to,” the Spanish singer explains.

María José Montiel will take the lead role in this Curro Carreres production of La Favorita on the 4th, 6th and 8th March, conducted by Antonello Allemandi.

Later the mezzo from Madrid will continue giving classes in her role of Professor at the Berlin, University of the Arts before returning to Murcia (Spain) to perform Moreno-Buendía’s Stabat Mater. She will then take the title role once again in the contemporary opera María Moliner by Toni Parera, this time for its premiere in the Oviedo Teatro Campoamor (Spain) and will perform Chausson’s Poème de l’amour et de la mer at the Teatro Colón in Buenos Aires.