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68th Puccini Festival 2022 Torre del Lago
Butterfly, Tosca, Turandot, Rondine the four works on the bill, the theme of young people
IS "The better youth”The motto of 68th Puccini Festival of Torre del Lago, with a double reference, al 2022 European Year of Youth, and al centenary of the birth of Pier Paolo Pasolini, who thus entitled his collection of poems published in 1954. The approach to Puccini, although daring, underlines how central the theme of youth and youth is in the poetics of the composer from Lucca.

The 68th Puccini Festival which, like every year, celebrates the Maestro on the banks of the Massaciuccoli lake, his thirty-year buen retiro, will take place from 15 July to 27 August 2022. At the center of the programming, four operatic titles of sure appeal, Madama Butterfly, Tosca, Turandot is The swallow, which will be staged in the open-air Grand Theater for a total of 13 evenings.

Two works from the second half of the twentieth century are also on the bill, Jakob Lenz of Wolfgang Rihm is Satyricon of Bruno Maderna, two concerts symphonic directed by Enrico Calesso and Nil Venditti, and two concerts that will present the first performance of the four new jobs commissioned by the Puccini Festival to as many contemporary composers.

The 68th Puccini Festival in Torre del Lago will mark the restart after the 2020 and 2021 editions which, although taking place regularly, have had to take into account the numerous limitations that the pandemic has imposed on the staging and the international public, limitations that have made less the changes introduced in programming with the appointment of Giorgio Battistelli as artistic director (January 2020). News consisting of an expansion of perspectives, materialized in a series of events on the bill in addition to the traditional appointments with Puccini's great opera: works by modern and contemporary authors, concerts and other events.

The Puccini Festival 2022 will be inaugurated on 15th of July in Gran Teatro Puccini with a capacity of 3360 seats, a grandiose outdoor setting against the backdrop of Lake Massaciuccoli, with Madama Butterfly, revival of the green setting created by Manu Lalli in 2020. On the stage there are no traditional scenes but only natural elements, trees, flowers, stones. On the podium of the'Orchestra and Choir of the Festival its musical director will rise Alberto Veronesi, while the cast will see Rachele Stanisci in the role of the protagonist, flanked by Laura Verrecchia (Suzuki), Vincenzo Costanzo (Pinkerton), Alessandro Luongo (Sharpless) e Francesco Napoleoni (Goro). Replicas the July 30 and the August 6.

The July 16 (with replicas the 29 July, 13 and 26 August) will go on stage Tosca in the preparation of Pier Luigi Pizzi produced byOpera of Rome. In a setting of the '30s they will be protagonists Svetlana Aksenova in the role of Floria Tosca, Ivan Magrì in the role of Mario Cavaradossi e Roberto Frontals in the guise of Baron Scarpia, he directs Enrico Calesso.

It continues on 23 July with Turandot directed by Michele Gamba, making its debut in Torre del Lago. The direction of this production seen last year is by Daniele Abbado, which defines its reading as "not literal nor realistic", while the scenes - luminous bodies of symbolic and minimal impact - are signed by Angelo Linzalata and the costumes from Giovanna Buzzi. The protagonist will be Karine Babajanyan, already applauded at the festival in other Puccini roles, while Calaf will have the voice of Teodor Ilincai, and in the role of Liù he will return Emanuela Sgarlata. Next to them they will be on stage Abraham Rosalen (Timur), Kazuky Yoshida (Altoum), Giulio Mastrototaro (Ping), Didier Pieri (Pang), Francesco Pittari (Pong). In reply the 5, 12 and 20 August.

The last Puccini production of the 2022 Festival will be The swallow (19 and 27 August), proposed in the setting up of Denis Krief already seen in Florence in 2017 and 2020. The representation is in fact the result of the collaboration with the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino, another synergy of the festival with a great Italian theater, after the one with the Opera di Roma for Tosca. On the podium, making his debut in Torre del Lago, the American director Robert Trevino, while they will be in the cast Jacquelyn Wagner (Magda), Ivan Ayon Rivas (Ruggero) and Mirjam Mesak (Lisette).

The billboard also features two works from the second half of the 20th century, more precisely two chamber works from the 1970s: Jakob Lenz of Wolfgang Rihm, resumed in many theaters after the 1979 premiere and now considered a classic of musical theater of the late twentieth century, the July 20 toEnrico Caruso Auditorium with the direction of Marco Angius and directed by Cesare Scarton, in a show produced in collaboration with theTeatro alla Scala Academy.

The August 26 at the Citadel of the Carnival of Viareggio it will be the turn of Satyricon of Bruno Maderna, with Tonino Battista driving the PMCE - Park of Contemporary Music Ensemble. Among the interpreters are Costanza Savarese, Eleonora Bordonaro, Patrizia Polia, Joël O'Cangha, Timothy Martin, David Ravignani, while the direction is curated by Manu Lalli.

Also scheduled two symphonic concerts: the July 28 and the August 24 L'Orchestra of the Puccini Festival, recently founded, will be directed respectively by Enrico Calesso is Nil Venditti in two programs on the theme "Puccini music and the world".

Two more concerts they are thought of as homage to Pier Paolo Pasolini in the centenary of his birth: the Puccini Festival has in fact commissioned four pieces to as many contemporary composers - Marcello Filotei, Salvatore Frega, Andrea Manzoli, Roberta Vacca - inspired by The best youth, the collection of poems that Pasolini published in 1954. The four compositions will be premiered on 2 and 3 August with the direction of Fabio Maestri. The two evenings in collaboration with the Dante Alighieri Society will be streamed all over the world.

The contemporary work and in particular the work of Sylvano Bussotti, musician, librettist, director and set designer, as well as artistic director of the Puccini Festival in the 1980s, will be at the center of the conference "Quo vadis Opera?", two international study days (25 and 26 August) under the coordination of Michele Girardi, which will be held in the spaces of the Torre del Lago theater.

The initiative by solidarity of the Puccini Festival 2022 towards young Ukrainian musicians, who lost hopes and opportunities for study and work with the war: the festival has decided to host some young Ukrainian singers in Viareggio, so that they can attend the Puccini Festival Academy.

Finally, as the artistic director Giorgio Battistelli recalled, the Puccini Festival is already looking to 2024, when the centenary of the master's death will fall, an opportunity to transform the whole of Versilia into a large open-air stage where the entire work of Giacomo will be staged. Puccini.  

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Author: Sabine Frantellizzi

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