by Muriel Feiner
The Teatro Real has resumed its activity after all programming was cancelled in March due to the pandemic. It has now scheduled 27 performances of the popular opera La Traviata composed by Giuseppe Verdi, between July 1 and 29, in a major effort to satisfy opera fans who had already acquired their tickets and those who are anxious to return to the Opera, while respecting the new health and safety regulations.
All of the pertinent safety measures requiring masks, hand sanitizers and social distancing have been adopted, which means that only 869 spectators will be allowed to attend each performance. For this reason, there will be four different castings, that will include in the role of “Violeta”, sopranos Marina Rebeka, Ruth Iniesta, Ekaterina Bakanova, Lana Kos and Lisette Oropesa; as “Alfredo Germont”: tenors Michael Fabiano, Ivan Magr, Matthew Polenzani and Ismael Jordi; and as “Giorgio Germont”, baritones Artur Rucinski, Nicola Alaimo, Luis Cansino and Javier Franco.
The Theatre’s entire Orchestra and Choir will be distributed appropriately in the pit and on the stage. Musical Director Nicola Luisotti, an expert in Verdi, will be back in the Teatro Real after Il Trovatore (2007), Rigoletto (2015), Aida (2018) and Don Carlos (2019) and he will return in the Fall — Covid permitting — to direct Un Ballo in Maschera.
In order to respect the current safety guidelines, stage director Leo Castaldi has devised a semi-staged concert version, in which 2-by-2 meter squares are outlined on the floor to assure that the soloists respect their individual spaces.
The entire orchestra of 56 musicians will be accommodated in the 140 m2 of the pit, playing with their masks whenever possible and respecting the 1.5-meter distance.
In the press conference, all of the artists present expressed their enthusiasm and excitement at being able to return to the stage and do what they love most: perform, especially in such a magnificent opera and such a classic setting.
Telefónica, one of the main sponsors of the Teatro Real, will make the presentation of La Traviata available free of charge to opera lovers on the digital platform, My Opera Player, so that they can enjoy it from the comfort of their own homes on July 15th at 8 p.m.
My Opera Player: ‘La Traviata’ will be broadcast live in its semi-staged vesion at 8:00 PM, June 15, 2020.
Images/Muriel Feiner, and Teatro Real website and Facebook (Fair use)
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