Announcing Welsh National Opera's 2012-2013 season earlier today, David Pountney took the unusual step of sharing his plans for 2013-2014 as well. He stressed the importance of risk taking and adventure, in spite of the economic challenges lying ahead.
WNO will be staging eight new productions over 2012 – 2014: a Donizetti trilogy (Anna Bolena, Maria Stuarda, Roberto Devereux), Lulu, Manon Lescaut, Henze’s Boulevard Solitude, Lohengrin and Nabucco. Stuttgart's production of Moses und Aron will also get a UK premiere, and the centenary of Benjamin Britten's birth will be marked with a new production of Paul Bunyan by Welsh National Youth Opera. Each season will be themed, and complemented by a series of concerts.
After several years of largely uninspired programming, Pountney's plans strike a good balance between stuff it's worth schlepping to Cardiff for and bankable revivals. Some solid casting too.
Here are the details:
- La bohème (Conductor: Simon Phillippo /Andrew Greenwood, Director: Annabel Arden) Cast includes: Mimi Giselle Allen /Michelle Walton, Rodolfo Alex Vicens/Shaun Dixon, Marcello David Kempster, Musetta Kate Valentine, Schaunard Gary Griffiths, Colline Piotr Lempa
- Così fan tutte (Conductor: Mark Wigglesworth, Director: Benjamin Davis) CAst includes: Fiordiligi Elizabeth Watts, Dorabella Cora Burggraaf, Despina Joanne Boag, Ferrando Andrew Tortise, Guglielmo Jacques Imbrailo, Don Alfonso Neal Davies
- Jephtha (Conductor: Paul Goodwin, Director: Katie Mitchell) Cast includes: Jephtha Robert Murray, Zebul Alan Ewing, Storage Diana Montague, Iphis Fflur Wyn, Hamor Robin Blaze
- Lulu (Conductor: Lothar Koenigs, Director: David Pountney) Cast includes: Lulu Olga Pasichnyk, Countess Geschwitz Natascha Petrinsky, Wardrobe Mistress / Schoolboy Patricia Orr, Doctor Schön / Jack the Ripper Ashley Holland, Alwa Peter Hoare, Schigolch Richard Angas, Animal Tamer / Acrobat Robert Poulton, Prince / Manservant / Marquis Alan Oke
- The Cunning Little Vixen (Conductor: Lothar Koenigs, Director: David Pountney) Cast includes: Vixen Sophie Bevan, Fox Sarah Castle, Schoolmaster Alan Oke, Poacher David Stout, Parson Richard Angas
- Madam Butterfly (Conductor: Frédéric Chaslin /Gareth Jones, Director: Joachim Herz) Cast includes: Cio-Cio-San Cheryl Barker /Judith Howarth, Pinkerton Gwyn Hughes Jones, Suzuki Claire Bradshaw, Bonze Julian Close)
- Lohengrin (Conductor: Lothar Koenigs, Director: Antony McDonald) Cast includes: Lohengrin Peter Wedd, Elsa Emma Bell, Ortrud Susan Bickley, Friedrich Von Telramund John Lundgren, Heinrich Matthew Best, Herald Simon Thorpe
- Wagner Dream (Composer: Jonathan Harvey, Conductor: Nicholas Collon, Director: Pierre Audi) Cast includes: Prakiti Claire Booth, Buddha Dale Duesing, Mother Rebecca de Pont Davies, Old Brahmin Richard Angas
- Madam Butterfly (Conductor: Simon Phillippo, Director: Joachim Herz)
- Paul Bunyan (Welsh National Youth Opera)
- Anna Bolena (Conductor: Daniele Rustioni, Director: Alessandro Talevi)
- Maria Stuarda (Conductor: Graeme Jenkins, Director: Rudolf Frey)
- Roberto Devereux (Conductor: Daniele Rustioni, Director: Alessandro Talevi)
- Tosca (Director: Michael Blakemore)
- Manon Lescaut (Conductor: Lothar Koenigs, Director: Mariusz Trelinski)
- Boulevard Solitude (Composer: Henze, Conductor: Lothar Koenigs)
- La traviata (Director: David McVicar)
- Moses und Aron (Conductor: Lothar Koenigs, Directors: Jossi Wieler and Sergio Morabito)
- Nabucco (Director: Rudolf Frey)