Sunday, February 19, 2012

Stéphane Lissner and La Scala: Projects 2012-2015

It appears that the brilliant general director of La Scala, Stéphane Lissner, will stay in Milan until the end of 2015, and a list of their projects is more than impressive.

We can only hope his term in Italy will indeed end in 2015, so he could come to Paris to rescue whatever will remain of the Paris Opera by the autumn of 2015.

Below is a mighty list of what Lissner and La Scala prepare for the period before the end of October 2015.

Season Openings [followed by dozens of millions of people worldwide every year]:

  • December 7 2012 (opening of the 2012-2013 season), new production of Lohengrin [dir- Claus Guth, cnd- Daniel Barenboim; cast: Anja Harteros, Jonas Kaufmann, René Pape]
  • December 7 2013, new production of La Traviata [dir-  Dmitri Tcherniakov, cnd- Daniele Gatti; cast: Diana Damrau]
  • December 7 2014,  new production of Fidelio [dir- Deborah Warner, cnd- Daniel Barenboim]

Wagner bicentenary obliges, and so besides the above-mentioned Lohengrin, La Scala will also present:
  • 2 runs of their Ring des Nibelungen in June 2013, including the two remaining operas [dir- Guy Cassiers, cnd- Daniel Barenboim]
    warning -- ticket sales will begin coming Monday/Tuesday and the prices will range from 420€ to 1,200€ for the full Ring
  • New production of The Flying Dutchman [dir- Andreas Homoki, cnd- Hartmut Haenchen, cast: Bryn Terfel]

8 productions of Verdi operas, of which only two will be revivals:
  • Don Carlo [dir- Stéphane Braunschweig, cnd- Fabio Luisi] 
  • Aida [dir- Franco Zeffirelli, cnd- Gian-Andrea Noseda].
Besides the above-mentioned Traviata, the list of new productions of Verdi operas includes
  • Falstaff [dir-Robert Carsen, cnd- Daniel Harding]
  • Nabucco [dir- Daniele Abbado, cnd- Nicola Luisotti]
  • Oberto [dir- Mario Martone, cnd- Andrea Battistoni] 
  • Trovatore [dir- Mario Martone, cnd- ???] 
  • Macbeth [dir- Giorgio Barberio Corsetti, cnd- Valery Gergiev] 
  • Un ballo in maschera [dir- Damiano Michieletto, cnd- Daniele Rustioni]

During the 6 months of Expo 2015, La Scala will be opened every night (i.e. from May to October) with grand total of 17 productions, most of which will be the revivals of La Scala productions of Italian operas. Several new productions, however:
  • Turandot [dir- Nikolaus Lehnhoff, cnd- Riccardo Chailly; cast: Nina Stemme] 
  • An Inconvenient Truth, world premiere, opera composed by Giorgio Battistelli (obviously inspired by the eponymous film by Al Gore) 
  • Otello mounted in a peculiar way by the star-architect Norman Foster (assisted by Jürgen Flimm), and with Daniel Barenboim conducting


  1. Do you have a link to the Ring booking as there is no mention of this on La Scala site.

    Are you going to Kitzeh in Amsterdam? Magnificent production which fully restores my belief in Tcherniakov. It is a co-prod. with Bastille but not to current Parisian "taste" I think.

  2. Hi John!

    I didn't book my train tics for Amsterdam in advance so I'm afraid Kitezh will go on without me.

    Tcherniakov is a total genius (if you can still see Ruslan and Lyudmila it is not to be missed; the most profound and deeply Russian production of Eugene Onegin; groundbreaking Don Giovanni (that was a touch of genius that happens once in a decade); and the most humanistic take on Les Carmélites eva... ;)
    I'd love to see Kitezh and your line just made it tougher for me. Hope you enjoyed my dearest/best singer -- Svetlana Ignatovich.

    As for the link to La Scala Ring, the website is not up yet. Try and check out La Scala website every day next week and the Ring link will show up. As soon as I get it I'll post it here too. Cheers

  3. Personally I thought Ignatovich was a bit overparted vocally but thoroughly convincing as the naive maid. Vocally the stand out was John Daszak as the disturbed Grishka and the superb 130 piece chorus. A great pity that Opolais was otherwise engaged in a different kind of production :-).
    The production reflected fractured post-Communist Russia and curtain rise was the first time I have heard an audience audibly gasp at the sheer beauty of the stage picture of Fevronia's rustic idyll. Not an escapist fairy tale but a vision of what society could achieve, but here only as dream.

  4. Kitezh in Amsterdam is amazing indeed! Good news for La Scala: it is a coproduction, so in some future season Kitezh will also travel to Milan (and Barcelona as well).

  5. I owe you great thanks as I have regularly been checking La Scala site and happened this morning to log on just before 8am London time and saw the magic link Der Ring! I managed to secure a subscription for the 2nd Cycle. I would never have known if it had not been for your blog.(I also got confirmed my Bastille Ring tickets for 2013 as well this week).

    Are you going to Parisfal in Lyon for the MET out of town try out?

  6. Thanks John! You beat me with La Scala ;) I too bought the tics but for the first cycle.

    Yes of courrrse I will go to Lyon to see Parsifal. Let me check... yes on March 25 -- Sunday. Are you going that day too?

    I was so angry after the series of garbage presented at the Paris Opera that I started doubting if I actually liked opera... This Italianna in Nancy got me back on tracks, but I'm looking forward to see Tristan in Berlin again (Graham Vick production is good, and Runnicles is as good as Barenboim -- that coming from a huge Barenboim fun is a mighty compliment!;) )

  7. And thanks guys for Kitezh! I am green with jealousy! :(

  8. I am going to Parsifal on the 17th as there is a nice Wagner concert the night before, so as to make full use of a weekend in delicious Lyon.

    Petersen sings excerpts from the Ring, and she will be singing Isolde in Cardiff in May with Heppner (who replaces Hunter Morris who replaced Lehman in the MET Ring, who replaced Heppner......).

    I now have 4 Rings confirmed for 2012/13 and am keeping my fingers crossed for Munich in July. I am aslo eyeing Florence in 2013 under Mehta.

    Will you be going to the Bastille Ring again? despite the flaws in the production I think it is worth it for Jourdain and some new interesting casting.

  9. Wow! Already 4 Rings! I too am hoping to score the tickets for the Munich Ring in June.
    I try to stay away from anything written about the Munich Rheingold.

    All in all, the Paris Ring was OK to me (except for the last opera), by far the best of all the new productions presented since the arrival of these strange people who're currently running the Paris Opera. So, yes, I will obviously be back to Bastille for the Ring 2013 ;)

  10. I wish that S Lissner would never come to Paris Garnier. Too old, too much money spent , enough of Barenboim.

  11. I can only partly understand that as I too believe a young & talented artistic director can break the opera-box open (Olivier Py could be a good option).

    ANYTHING is better compared to the level of current artistic incompetence and conservatism that suffocates the operatic offer in Paris.

    Lissner has the openness and knows how to make a solid team that work.

    What do you mean by "too much money spent"?