Conductor, Eun Sun Kim
Director, Christopher Alden
Christopher Alden returns to English National Opera with a sexy, sophisticated production of Strauss’s sparkling operetta Die Fledermaus
Opening Monday 30 September, 7.30pm at London Coliseum (11 performances)
Strauss’s popular operetta returns to English National Opera (ENO) after 20 years, in a new production by world-renowned opera director Christopher Alden. Over the last five seasons, Alden has produced many critically-acclaimed productions for ENO including Partenope (winner of 2009 Olivier Award for Best New Production), The Makropulos Case and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (winner of Russia’s esteemed Golden Mask Award for opera and theatre). Alden plays a key role in ENO’s 2013/14 season, directing both Die Fledermaus and Verdi’s Rigoletto, which opens at ENO on 13 February 2014.
Alden’s alluring, dream-like production of Die Fledermaus takes inspiration from the elegant and sophisticated black-and-white films of Hollywood director Ernst Lubitsch and illustrates ENO’s flair for producing classic operas in fresh, unexpected ways. Co-produced with Canadian Opera Company, it premiered in Toronto in 2012 to great acclaim with the Toronto Star describing it as “rich, racy and irreverent…an eye and ear opener for anyone seeking to experience Strauss anew”.
Johann Strauss’s comic operetta is a story of revenge, seduction and mistaken-identity, centered on a glitzy high-society party thrown by Prince Orlofsky. Alden’s production of Die Fledermaus features sumptuous Art Deco designs – a perfect complement to the Viennese composer’s memorable melodies, which include the famous champagne aria and joyous ‘Laughing song’.
Korean conductor Eun Sun Kim was awarded the First Prize at the International Jesús López Cobos Opera Conducting Competition in Madrid in 2008, and assisted Cobos at Madrid’s Teatro Real from 2008-2010. A finalist at the 2013 German Conductor Prize in Berlin, Eun Sun Kim makes her ENO debut with Die Fledermaus, underlining ENO’s commitment to supporting and developing the world’s finest emerging conductors. Completing the creative team are set designer Allen Moyer, costume designer Constance Hoffman and lighting designer Paul Palazzo.
Tom Randle takes the principal role of Gabriel von Eisenstein. Randle has a long history with ENO, having debuted as Tamino in Nicholas Hytner’s production of The Magic Flute with the company 27 years ago. More recently, Randle was praised for his “scarily committed and full-on performance” (The ArtsDesk) as the Captain in Carrie Cracknell’s production of Wozzeck for ENO. Celebrated American mezzo soprano Jennifer Holloway plays the role of Prince Orlofsky. Holloway makes her ENO debut following a “bewitching” (Opera News) performance as Dorabella in Mozart’s Cosí fan tutte at the New National Theatre, Tokyo.
Highlighting ENO’s strong track record for developing British and British-trained talent, ENO Harewood Artist Julia Sporsén plays Rosalinde, with fellow ENO Harewood Artist Rhian Lois in the role of Adele. Soprano Sporsén is a favourite with ENO audiences, having played Livia in Detlev Glanert’s Caligula followed by the title role in Martin?’s Julietta in 2012, where she was praised for her “warmly luscious” tone by The Daily Telegraph. Rhian Lois played Papagena in the final revival of Nicholas Hytner’s The Magic Flute in 2012, Frasquita in Calixto Bieito’s Carmen and Nerine in David McVicar’s Medea during 2012/13 season.
The cast also includes Richard Burkhard, who played Marcello in ENO’s recent revival of La bohème, as Dr Falke and ENO favourite Andrew Shore performs the role of Frank.
Die Fledermaus opens at the London Coliseum on Monday 30 September for 11 performances – 30 September, 2, 5, 9, 11, 15, 18, 22, 24, 31 October and 2 November at 7.30pm.
Running time: 2 hours 35 minutes (with interval)
Pre-performance talk, Wednesday 9 October, 5.15-6.00pm, £5/£2.50 concs.
An Opera Undressed* performance of Die Fledermaus will take place on Wednesday 2 October.
Co-produced by English National Opera and the Canadian Opera Company.
New production supported by Lord and Lady Laidlaw.
Notes to Editors
English National Opera is:
- Staging contemporary highly theatrical work which is world class
- Working with creative talent from across the arts
- Reaching new audiences
- Developing and supporting British talent
*Opera Undressed is an audience development scheme that aims to introduce newcomers to English National Opera by demystifying the opera-going experience in a fun and informal setting.
During our 2013/14 season, ENO is hosting eight Opera Undressed nights. For just £25, audience members will:
- Get one of the best seats in the house
- Attend a pre-performance chat about the production
- Get an outline of the opera in advance
- Attend post-show drinks with cast and company members
- Enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of the London Coliseum, with bars serving beer and cocktails
An Opera Undressed performance of Die Fledermaus will take place on Wednesday 2 October.
See eno.org/undressed for more information.