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December 2000

Hearing Voices

Verdi Festwoche at the Bavarian State Opera

Even those who are not opera aficionados can occasionally be heard humming or whistling tunes from the operas of Giuseppe Verdi —whether it is the theme from Aida or the “Prisoners’ Chorus” from Nabucco. The works of this preeminent 19th- century Italian opera composer continue to rank among the highlights of theater repertoires around the world. On the 100th anniversary of Verdi’s death, the Bavarian State Opera will celebrate this outstanding artist with a 12-day Verdi-Festwoche (Jan. 16-28). Focusing exclusively on his late works, the festival will feature performances of his last four operas — Don Carlo (Jan. 16,19), Aida (Jan. 22, 25), Otello (Jan. 18, 21) and the eagerly awaited Munich premiere of Falstaff (Jan. 17, 20, 23, 26). Another special highlight is a staging of his powerful Messa da Requiem (Jan. 27, 28). Though a guest performance of star tenor Luciano Pavarotti was canceled, the Bavarian State Opera has managed to assemble a host of distinguished international soloists, many of whom are regulars at New York’s Metropolitan Opera, including Bryn Terfel as Sir John Falstaff, Vladimir Bogachov as Otello or Renée Fleming and Andrea Bocelli as soloists in Verdi’s requiem. Guaranteeing the high quality of each evening is Zubin Mehta, who has taken on the challenge of conducting every performance of this festival. For more information visit <<< CH

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