From Mozart’s comic look at love and fidelity in Così fan tutte to the destructive forces of obsession and jealousy in Cavalleria rusticana and Rachmaninov’s Aleko, Opera North’s latest season at The Lowry takes audiences on a compelling journey through the human psyche, underpinned by some of opera’s most unforgettable scores.
The season opens on Wednesday 20 March with two short operas directed by Karolina Sofulak. The double bill, which will be repeated on Friday 22 March, pairs a revival of Mascagni’s Cavalleria rusticana with a new production of Rachmaninov’s rarely performed Aleko. The two works are perfect companion pieces, both written when their composers were young and both exploring, with devastating insight, the obsession and jealousy ignited by seeing a partner in the arms of another.
Many of the cast take roles in both works, including Robert Hayward, who sings Alfio in Cavalleria rusticana and the title role in Aleko. Andrés Presno appears as Turiddù before the interval and Young Lover after, and Anne-Marie Owens returns to Opera North to take on the roles of Lucia in Cavalleria rusticana and A Woman in Aleko. Antony Hermus conducts.
Comedy is the order of the day on Thursday 21 and Saturday 23 March when Così fan tutte returns to the stage. Mozart’s much-loved opera sees two sisters being put to the test by their fiancés in disguise, thanks to an ill-advised bet that neither woman will remain faithful if tempted. What follows is a bittersweet look at love filled with seduction, revelations and surprises.
Tim Albery’s classic production, set in the 18th century Age of Reason, features Alexandra Lowe as Fiordiligi and Heather Lowe as Dorabella, with Anthony Gregory and Henry Neill as their duplicitous lovers Ferrando and Guglielmo. Clemens Schuldt makes his Opera North debut conducting the beguiling score, one of Mozart’s most breathtakingly beautiful.
All performances start at 7pm, with English subtitles at every show ensuring audiences can follow the plots with ease. Following its run in Salford, Così fan tutte will tour to Hull New Theatre.
Wed 20 Mar 7.00pm Cavalleria rusticana/Aleko
Thu 21 Mar 7.00pm Così fan tutte
Fri 22 Mar 7.00pm Cavalleria rusticana/Aleko Audio described
Sat 23 Mar 7.00pm Così fan tutte