Andre Chenier Kicks off Bregenz Opera Festival

Andre Chenier Kicks off Bregenz Opera Festival

Sunday, February 16th, 2014

2 pm | $12/$10 members/$6 12 and under

Imagine traveling to a realm of operatic magic—like no other place on earth—and still stay close to home. This winter and spring Rosendale Theater, through a special arrangement with the Unitel Company, will bring a taste of Austria’s fantastisch Bregenz Festival. Three cinema HD experiences of operas captured live from the shore of Lake Constance and sung in their original languages with English subtitles will make their way to the Mid-Hudson Region : Umberto Giordano’s rarely seen André Chénier (2011), Mozart’s beloved The Magic Flute (2013) and Verdi’s grand Aida (2009).

Famous for its floating stage, gorgeous outdoor setting, and striking multi-dimensional sets, the Bregenz Festival attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. Begun in 1946 as an eccentric way of stimulating tourism after WWII the Festival has evolved into a major pilgrimage site for arts lovers. More recently the Festival’s outdoor theater and its production of Tosca was a location for a dramatic scene in the James Bond movie Quantum of solace.

On Sunday, February 16 at 2:00 pm, André Chénier, An Opera in Four Acts opens the series. Umberto Giordano’s 1896 opera dramatizes the life-story of French poet Andrea Chénier (a precursor to the Romantics) who was associated with the French Revolution and guillotined for alleged for “crimes against the state.” This production was directed by Keith Warner; David Field’s set uses an almost 78-foot high statue of dying Jean-Paul Marat sinking into the water. Running time is approximately 130 minutes.

Hector Sandoval stars as the ill-fated André Chénier, Norma Fantini and Scott Hendricks co-star. Conducted by Ulf Schirmer, the production features the Vienna Symphonic Orchestra, the Prague Philharmonic Choir and Bregenz Festival Chorus. The opera contains a well-known aria, “La Mamma Morta”; a recording by Maria Callas was featured in the soundtrack Philadelphia.

To see a video about the creation of Bregenz Festival’s André Chénier go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WLrIk9pYW3M

Sunday March 16 will bring the Bregenz production of The Magic Flute, May 18 will see the showing of Aida.