OPERA SARATOGA presents
Music by Daniel Catán
Libretto by the composer, based on the novel by Antonio Skármeta,
and the film by Michael Radford
Directed by Lawrence Edelson, Conducted by James Lowe
Featuring Sandra López, Daniel Montenegro and Richard Troxell
July 7 – July 16, 2016
Composer - Daniel Catán; Libretto by the composer, based on the novel by Antonio Skármeta, and the film by Michael Radford
Based on the Academy Award-winning 1994 Italian film that became a surprise hit with audiences around the world, and also on the 1985 novel Ardiente Paciencia by Antonio Skármeta, Il Postino tells the story of a shy young postman in a tiny Italian fishing village, who discovers the courage to pursue his dreams through his daily deliveries to his only customer, the esteemed Chilean poet Pablo Neruda. The role of Neruda was originally written for Plàcido Domingo, who sang the role at the opera’s premiere in 2010 at Los Angeles Opera – just months before composer Daniel Catán’s tragic death at the age of 62.
Catán is known for a neo-romantic style that has been compared variously to Puccini, Ravel and Debussy, with lush orchestrations and lyrical melodic lines. Tonal and accessible, his work has proven immensely popular with audiences.
Il Postino will be the first Spanish opera performed in Opera Saratoga’s history. The cast will feature the company debuts of four international singers: tenor Daniel Montenegro will sing the title role of Mario Ruoppolo - the postman - a role he recently sang in Paris at the Théâtre du Châtelet; tenor Richard Troxell sings the role of Pablo Neruda; and soprano Sandra López sings the role of Matilde Neruda, the poet’s third wife. James Lowe also makes his company debut conducting the production, which will be directed by Opera Saratoga’s Artistic and General Director Lawrence Edelson.
Performance Dates: July 7 @ 7:30pm; July 10 @ 2:00pm; July 16 @ 2:00pm
BIOGRAPHIES OF FEATURED ARTISTS
A graduate of San Francisco’s prestigious Merola Opera Program, recent seasons for tenor Daniel Montenegro have included his European opera debut at the Théâtre du Châtelet as Mario in Daniel Catán’s Il Postino alongside Plácido Domingo, as well as a number of significant role and company debuts including Roderigo (Otello) with San Francisco Opera under Nicola Luisotti, Alfredo (La traviata) with Minnesota Opera, Nemorino (L’elisir d’amore) with Washington National Opera, Pang (Turandot) at the Hollywood Bowl under Dudamel and most recently Romeo (Roméo et Juliette) for Tulsa Opera and at the Castleton Festival. This season Daniel makes his role and company debut as the Prince in John Adams’ A Flowering Tree with Teatro Nacional de São Carlos and reprises the role of Mario with Opera Saratoga. As a San Francisco Opera Adler Fellow and former Resident Artist of the Minnesota Opera, Daniel has sung a wealth of roles including Liverotto and Rustighello (Lucrezia Borgia), Pong (Turandot), Remendado (Carmen), Tamino (Die Zauberflöte), Nick (The Handmaid’s Tale) and Flavio (Norma). He has also sung Steuermann (Der fliegende Holländer) with both Portland and Arizona Operas and the Shepherd in Peter Sellars’ production of Oedipus Rex at the Sydney Festival under Joana Carneiro. An ongoing collaboration with Los Angeles Opera has brought appearances in several productions including the world premiere of Lee Holdridge’s Concierto para Mendez, La Traviata (released on DVD), Carmen, Luisa Fernanda and Il tabarro.
Tenor Richard Troxell has thrilled audiences in leading roles at opera houses and concert halls around the world, including Los Angeles Opera, Washington Opera, Sydney Opera, Houston Grand Opera, New York City Opera, the Opera Company of Philadelphia, Boston Lyric Opera, L’Opéra Comique in Paris, Monte Carlo, and Toulouse. Mr. Troxell’s star turn as Pinkerton in Frederic Mitterand’s critically acclaimed film Madame Butterfly received high praise from both film and music critics alike following its 1995 Paris and 1996 New York premieres. Recent career highlights include Roméo with the Palm Beach Opera; Des Grieux in Massenet’s Manon with L’Opéra de Montréal; Pinkerton in Madame Butterfly with Opera Australia; Rodolfo in La Bohème with Opera Colorado; Turiddu in Cavalleria Rusticana with Opera Hamilton; the title role in Philip Glass’ Galileo Galilei with Cincinnati Opera and Portland Opera; and Don José in Carmen for his Italian debut at the Teatro Petruzzelli, as well as at the Castleton Festival with Maestro Maazel, and for Opera Australia, in Beijing and at Vancouver Opera. Equally at home on the concert stage, Mr. Troxell has been seen with the San Francisco Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Saint Louis Symphony as Tenor Soloist in Orff’s Carmina Burana. Other concert engagements of note include Handel’s Messiah with the Pittsburgh Symphony, Mahler’s Die Lied von der Erde with the Detroit Symphony, and Mendelsshon’s Walpurgisnacht with the Denver Symphony. Future engagements include a return to Vancouver as Pinkerton, a return to the Metropolitan Opera for Die Fledermaus and Lulu, and his debut at Opera Saratoga as Pablo Neruda in Daniel Catán’s Il Postino.
Soprano Sandra López captivates audiences around the world with critically acclaimed performances in a wide variety of roles including the title roles of Tosca and Suor Angelica, Cio-Cio San (Madama Butterfly), Nedda (I Pagliacci), Catherine (A View from the Bridge), Liù (Turandot), Micaela (Carmen), Mimì (La Bohème), Tatiana (Eugene Onegin), Marguerite (Faust), Violetta (La Traviata), with companies including the Metropolitan Opera, Florida Grand Opera, Opera de Oviedo, Palm Beach Opera, Fort Worth Opera, and Virginia Opera.
Recently, Ms. López appeared with the Finnish National Opera for her role debut as Elisabetta (Don Carlo) and with Teatro la Fenice as Mimì (La Bohème). She debuted with the Nuremberg Symphony and the Lithuanian National Opera and Orchestra, and she portrayed Juana Ines de la Cruz in the world premiere of With Blood, With Ink for Fort Worth Opera (released commercially on Albany Records in the fall of 2014). After winning the Metropolitan Opera National Council Award, Ms. López joined The Met’s Lindemann Young Artist Development Program where she covered and performed roles such as Catherine (A View from the Bridge), Marguerite (Faust), Liù (Turandot), Roberta Alden (An American Tragedy – world premiere), Frasquita (Carmen), Tebaldo (Don Carlo), Fourth Maid (Elektra), and Flowermaiden (Parsifal). Highlights of 2015-16 include her debut with the Boston Symphony as the Fourth Maid in Elektra and two operas by Daniel Catán: the title role of Florencia en el Amazonas with Arizona Opera, and Matilde in Il Postino with Opera Saratoga.
A leading conductor of Opera and Musical Theater, Grammy nominated musician James Lowe is the Music Director and Conductor of the Broadway production of Les Misérables playing now at the Imperial Theater. He will make his San Francisco Opera debut conducting Sweeney Todd having conducted the same production at Houston Grand Opera. Mr. Lowe recently made his Lyric Opera of Chicago debut leading a new production of the Rodgers and Hammerstein classic Oklahoma and his Glimmerglass Festival debut leading Lerner and Loewe's Camelot. Mr. Lowe also appeared with the Jacksonville Symphony, Memphis Symphony and the Modesto Symphony. Mr. Lowe served as the Music Director and Conductor of the Tony Award-winning Broadway revival of Cole Porter's Anything Goes, starring Sutton Foster and Joel Grey, and was Music Supervisor for the First National Tour of this production. He recently made conducting debuts with Utah Opera (Carlisle Floyd's Of Mice and Men and Daniel Catán's Florencia en el Amazonas) and the Jacksonville Symphony. He also returned to the Houston Ballet for The Nutcracker. At Houston Grand Opera he conducted the world premiere production and subsequent revival of The Little Prince, an opera by Academy Award-winning composer Rachel Portman. At HGO he has also led Carmen, Le nozze di Figaro, Die Entführung aus dem Serail, Jake Heggie’s The End of the Affair (world premiere production), as well as the HGO Studio production of Copland’s The Tender Land. Mr. Lowe made his Pittsburgh Opera Center debut with Jonathan Dove’s Flight, and has led Sweeney Todd at Wolf Trap Opera.
Lawrence Edelson is highly respected not only as a critically acclaimed stage director, but also as a visionary company leader who has created programs in the areas of artist mentorship and new works development that have served as models of innovation for opera companies around the country. Lawrence is the Artistic and General Director of Opera Saratoga, and the Producing Artistic Director of American Lyric Theater in New York City. As a stage director, Lawrence’s critically acclaimed productions include Philip Glass’ Hydrogen Jukebox (Fort Worth Opera); the American Premiere of Telemann’s Orpheus (Wolf Trap Opera); the World Premiere of Jeff Myers’ Buried Alive (Fargo Moorhead Opera and Fort Worth Opera); the New York premiere of Fauré’s Pénélope (Manhattan School of Music); La Traviata (Minnesota Opera); Carmen (Toledo Opera); Il Barbiere di Siviglia (Hawaii Opera Theater); H.M.S. Pinafore and La Cenerentola (Opera Saratoga); Ariadne auf Naxos, Little Women, Eugene Onegin, Werther, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (IVAI Tel Aviv); and the world premiere of The ToyMaker Off-Broadway. Lawrence is perhaps best known in the opera field as the founder of American Lyric Theater and the creator of he Composer Librettist Development Program, the only full-time mentorship initiative for emerging operatic writers in the country. A tireless advocate for emerging artists and the diversification of audiences for opera, Edelson also serves on the Strategy Committee for OPERA America, and continues to forge collaborations with opera companies across the country.
ABOUT OPERA SARATOGA
Opera Saratoga, formerly known as Lake George Opera, began with a production of Die Fledermaus at the Diamond Point Theatre on July 5, 1962, playing to an audience of 230. The Company now calls Saratoga Springs home and performs for more than 25,000 people annually. Opera Saratoga serves the communities of Saratoga Springs, the Lower Adirondack and New York State Capital areas by providing access to world-class opera through the production of an annual Summer Festival, as well as year-round activities including extensive educational programs, mentorship of emerging operatic artists, and unique opportunities for the public to experience opera in both our home theater and non-traditional venues that leverage and embrace the unique cultural, historic, and natural resources of the area. To date, the Company has performed over ninety different fully staged works by over fifty different composers, including thirty-four works by American composers and six world-premiere productions. Throughout its history, the Company's success has been shaped by visionary leaders, talented artists, and critically acclaimed productions. In 2014, the Board of Directors appointed Lawrence Edelson as the new Artistic and General Director. Edelson’s leadership marks a new chapter in the company’s history, with increased emphasis on community partnerships throughout the year, diversification of the company’s repertoire, and a reaffirmed commitment to both the presentation of American opera and the mentorship of emerging artists as core activities in the company’s programs each season. The 2016 Summer Festival marks the second season under his leadership. For more information, visit www.operasaratoga.org.
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Theater: Opera Saratoga
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Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
Buy Tickets Online or Call: Opera Saratoga at (518) 584-6018