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seit/since 1999

Premieres in English


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World premiere May 2003 at the Teatro Real

Isaac Albéniz (1860 - 1909)


Photo of the scene (photo: Birgit Popp)

Performance of June 4, 2003 - Though Isaac Albéniz was one of the most important Spanish composers, he has never found the recognition, he would deserve. Only few works of the already as a 'Wunderkind' worldwide - like in South America, Leipzig (GER) and Bruxelles (BEL) - celebrated concert pianist are well-known today with the exception of his piano pieces and there especially the Suite Iberia,  which has written music history. And this though Albéniz has written besides his piano works, of which the most celebrated besides the Suite Iberia are Recuerdos de viaje, Espana, Seis hojas de álbum, several pieces for the music theatre like The Magic Opal, San Antonio de la Florida, Henry Clifford, Pepita Jiménez and Merlin.

Report  - photo impressions part I and part II


Teatro del Bosque Móstoles near Madrid (ESP)
Premiere 10. Mai 2003

Un ballo in maschera

Text and Photos: Birgit Popp

Within easy reach of the center of Madrid by the recently opened Metro Sur, the Teatro del Bosque at Móstoles is an affordable alternative to the Teatro Real or the Teatro de la Zarzuela in the center of Madrid. 


Teatro Real Madrid (ESP), Premiere 13. March 13 2003

La Favorite

Photos: Javier de Real


Carlso Álvarez und Sonia Ganassi
Dolora Sajick und Manuel Lanza

Donizetti's masterpiece with great success on the Madrid stage - Report

Raúl Giménez
José Bros
Stefano Palatchi

Impressions of the rehearsals Part 1 - Part 2

Impressions & contents Part 1 - Part 2- Part 3 - Part 4

Cast - Further performances

Transmission in Spanish National Radio - Classic Radio  of the performance of April 26 at 8 p.m.

 Further information: www.teatro-real.com


Teatro Real Madrid (ESP), Premiere February 7/8, 2003

Faust (Gounod)

Highly acclaimed production with outstanding casts


Impressions and contents   Part 1  -  Part 2 Part 3  -  Part 4

Teatro de la Maestranza, Sevilla, Premiere October 25, 2002


A strange sight for a premiere !

Orchestra strike in Seville

Photos: Teatro de la Maestranza, Birgit Popp Text: Birgit Popp

Certainly Carlos Álvarez would have appreciated to have his stage debut as Jago in Verdi's Otello with less dramatic circumstances, as this was the case in Seville (ESP) at October 25, 2002. Nevertheless, it became an outstanding performance of the Spanish baritone. 

Carlos Álvarez and Ángel Rodríguez

Impressions and contents

Teatro Real, Madrid, Premiere October 1, 2002

Simone Boccanegra

Photo: Birgit Popp

With a from all sides applauded, splendid performance of Verdi's Simone Boccanegra the Teatro Real in Madrid (ESP) opened on October 1 its fifth season since its reopening in 1997. Stage director Giancarlo del Monaco and his stage and costume designer Michael Scott have created together with the light designer Wolfgang Zoubek a completely rounded work with an intensive atmosphere and magnificent design. The five protagonists of the first night - Alexandru Agache (Simone Boccanegra), Elisabete Matos (Amelia Grimaldi), Giacomo Prestia (Jacopo Fiesco), Marco Berti (Gabriele Adorno) and Anooshah Golesorkhi (Paolo Albani) - have been in as good form as the orchestra under the baton of Gabriele Ferro. 

Report of the premiere

Impressions and contents Part 1  -  Part 2 Part 3

Performances: October 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15

Radio broadcast: Sunday Oct. 13, 2002, 6 p.m.
Spanish National Radio Station Chanel - Radio Classica

Royal Opera House Covent Garden London, October 11, 2002
(Premiere Sept. 28, 2002)

I masnadieri

Carlo (Franco Farina) and Amalia (Paula Delligatti) finally found each other again, but too late for an happy-end.
Photo: Clive Barda

While Rigoletto (first performed in 1851) belongs to the standard repertory of almost each opera house throughout the world, the Royal Opera House staged with Verdi's I masnadieri (Libretto: Andrea Maffai after Schiller's Die Räuber) a very seldom played opera of the Italian composer, which had been first performed ever at London in 1847.


Vienna State Opera, Premičre December 22, 2001
First performance at Vienna in original language 
of Charles Gounod's opera

Roméo et Juliette

Famous opera premičre of Roméo et Juliette at the Vienna State Opera - Light, music, voices, movements and costumes melt to a fascinating unit

Stefania Bonfadelli
Photos: Axel Zeininger


Photoimpressions and contents part 1

Photoimpressions and contents part 2


Teatro Real, Madrid (ESP), Premiere October 1, 2001


Carlos Alvarez als Rigoletto - Photo: Teatro Real
Carlos Alvarez als Rigoletto - Photo: Teatro Real

The night of Carlos Alvarez

For the opening of the 2001/2002-season at the Teatro Real Carlos Alvarez gave his enthusiastically celebrated debut as Rigoletto, Verdi's tragic court jester and father figure. The in Malaga born, young Spanish baritone embodied the difficult role as singer and actor in an incredible intensive way with a sensible, but nevertheless force- and powerful, beautiful voice. (more)

Further performances: October 4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 24 and 28, 2001

Report    Commentary   Cast

Impressions and Contents  Part 1     Part 2      Part 3

Vienna State Opera, Premiere December 7, 2000

Roberto Devereux

A festival of the great voices

The first appearance ever at the Vienna State Opera of Donizetti's 1837 at Neapel first staged opera drama about jalousy, love and betrayal became under the musical direction of Marcello Viotti in the production of Silviu Purcarete and his designer Helmut Stürmer a outstanding success for Edita Gruberova as Queen Elizabeth I., Ramon Vargas in the title role as Roberto Devereux, Ekelejda Shkosa as Sara, Duchesse of Nottingham, and Yu Chen as Duke of Nottingham, who was covering the sick Carlos Alvarez. An extended report will follow soon.

Edita Gruberova als Elizabeth I.
Edita Gruberova in her favourite role as Elizabeth I.
Photo: Axel Zeininger

Photo Impressions

Gran Teatro de Liceo, Barcelona, October 7, 1999

Gran Teatro de Liceo reopened with Puccini's


Short report

Opera Frankfurt (am Main), Premiere, October 2, 1999

Der Fliegende Holländer - The Flying Dutchman


Bregenz Festival  July 20 till August 23, 1999

Un ballo in maschera

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Photos: Birgit Popp (Agfa ePhoto CL 50)

Bregenz, floating stage, Premiere July 21, 1999: With the British stage director team Richard Jones and Antony McDonald Verdi's whole opera 'Un ballo in maschera' becomes a dance into death in a fantastic -surrealistic stage and light aesthetic carried by the music's bow of tension, which the Vienna Symphonists under the baton of   Marcello Viotti never let get torn off.

Impressions of the production
Part 1 The Produrction
Part 2 The three Casts
Part 3 The Work on the Floating stage

Greek Passion

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Photo: Miro Kusmanovic

Bregenz, Festival House, Premiere July 20, 1999: Worls's premiere of the first version of  Bohuslav Martinů's work 'Greek Passion' becomes an overwhelming success.

An extended report will follow !

Teatro de la Maestranza, Seville (ESP), Premičre
May 4, 1999

El Cid (Le Cid)

Finale Le Cid/G. Mendo Murillo
Finale  Photo: Guillermo Mendo Murillo, Sevilla

Revival of Massenet's almost forgotten opera 'Le Cid' became a grandiose spectacle in a splendid setting with an outstanding cast: Plácido Domingo (Rodrigue/Le Cid), Elisabete Matos (Chimene), Ferruccio Furlanetto (Don Diego), Eva Santana (L' Infante), Alain Vernhes (Le Roi), Valeri Alexejev (Le Comte de Gormas), Fernando Latorre (Don Alonzo), Josep Ruiz (Don Arias), Sergio Fontana (St. Jacques), Eric Martin-Bonnet (L'Envoye Maure)


Oper Köln (Cologne)/GER,  April 8, 1999, B-Premičre



Oper Frankfurt am Main (GER), April 3, 1999, Premičre

Cavalleria rusticana
Pagliacci (Der Bajazzo)

Gripping new production of  'Cavalleria rusticana' and 'Pagliacci' directed by Giancarlo del Monaco and condcuted by Paolo Carignani




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