Giacomo Meyerbeer: Les Huguenots – premiere: 28 October 2017, 6 p.m.
The story is based on one of the most horrible events in the French Wars of Religion: the Saint Bartholomew's Day massacre, when thousands of French Calvinist Protestants (Huguenots) gathered in Paris were butchered with the assent of the king. Meyerbeer's grand opera has not been on the repertoire of the Opera for 80 years. The new production directed by János Szikora and conducted by Oliver von Dohnányi can be seen six times at the Erkel Theatre.
Verdi's choice for a subject – the story of a pastor who offers his unfaithful wife a divorce, only to have her return to him just as, on the verge of forgiveness and a happy ending, her father murders her seducer – is a product of his own time. Why would a Catholic Italian composer be interested in a story that takes place in Austria? And what does he have to do with Protestantism at all? These questions weighed on both Verdi and the work itself, to the point that he revised it with the title of Aroldo. Stiffelio is now presented in a concert version with Hector Lopez Mendoza in the title role. The conductor of the evening is Christian Badea.
One of the Opera's loveliest traditions is its musical observation of the All Saints/Day of the Dead holiday period with the funeral mass that has been described as 'an opera in ecclesiastical robes'. The second performance of Giuseppe Verdi's grandiose Requiem is dedicated to the victims of sectarian conflicts among Christians. Soloists: Eszter Sümegi, Andrea Szántó, Hector Lopez Mendoza and Alexander Roslavets. The performances are conducted by Pier Giorgio Morandi.