Theatre Director Rupert Goold makes his London opera directing debut with a new production of Puccini’s Turandot
Date published: Mon 17 Aug 2009
ENO’s 2009/10 Season includes new productions of Turandot and Tosca highlighting a commitment by the Company to refreshing core Puccini repertory, which has recently included Madam Butterfly and La bohème. Olivier Award-winning theatre director Rupert Goold makes his ENO and London opera directing debut with Turandot.
Rupert Goold is Artistic Director of Headlong Theatre and his theatre credits include the acclaimed West End productions of Macbeth (2007), No Man’s Land, King Lear, Six Characters in Search of an Author (2008), Oliver! (2009) and, most recently, Enron (Royal Court Theatre). Rupert Goold commented ‘what appeals to me most about Turandot is the relationship between sexuality and mortality which seems very contemporary’.
ENO Music Director Edward Gardner conducts Puccini’s score for the first time. The piece, begun in 1920, is usually regarded as Puccini’s masterpiece and was left unfinished at his death in 1926.
Making her ENO debut is set designer Miriam Buether with costumes by Katrina Lindsay. The lighting design is by Rick Fisher with choreography by Aletta Collins. The translation is provided by William Radice.
Kirsten Blanck makes her UK stage debut as the icy princess Turandot who will wed the man who can answer her three riddles; anyone who fails must die. Praised for her vocal and intense acting abilities, she changed in 2001 from a dramatic coloratura to a dramatic soprano.
Opposite her is Gwyn Hughes Jones making his role debut as the unknown prince (Calaf). His most recent appearance with ENO was as Pinkerton in the 2008 revival of Anthony Minghella’s award-winning staging of Madam Butterfly. The acclaimed soprano Amanda Echalaz (Tosca 2008 and Un Ballo in Maschera 2009 Holland Park Opera), makes her ENO debut as the slave-girl Liu. They are joined by James Cresswell Timur, Ben Nelson Ping and ENO Young Singer Christopher Turner Pong. The role of the Emperor Altoum is sung by Stuart Kale and the principal cast is completed by Iain Paterson Mandarin.
Turandot opens at the London Coliseum on 8 October for 14 performances - 8, 16, 18 (matinee 3.00pm only), 21 & 31 October and 5, 11, 13, 21 & 26 November and 3, 5 (early start 6.30pm), 9 & 12 (early start 6.30pm) December at 7.30pm
Pre-performance talks Sarah Lenton, opera and theatre historian: 16 October, 5.30pm, London Coliseum, £4 and Alexander Wilson : 21 November, 5.30pm, London Coliseum, £4
Box Office: 0871 911 0200 or online www.eno.org