Opera. The mythological lovers are interpreted by Katarina Karnéus and Kerstin Avemo as we stage this, our first opera by Gluck.
It is a fine art, defying Fate
When Orpheus' beloved wife Eurydice dies, he mourns so despairingly that the gods relent. Orpheus is given permission to go down into Hades, the realm of the dead, to bring her back to the living world. But the god of love, Amor, sets several conditions. With his art of singing, Orpheus must soften the hearts of the figures guarding the gates of the underworld. On the way up, he must not look at Eurydice, and he must not tell her why. If he does not succeed, Eurydice will die once more. During the trek up from Hades, Eurydice pleads with Orpheus to look at her. Finally, he turns around.
Orfeo ed Euridice is a study in grief and doubt. A meeting between two people who, on the surface, have a loving relationship, but who in reality neither understand nor rely on one another.
2014 is the 300th anniversary of the birth of opera the reformer, Christoph Willibald Ritter von Gluck. For the first time in this opera house, we are staging one of his operas, in a production that is rather luxuriously gilt-edged. The rarely-staged Parma version of his eternally beloved Orfeo ed Euridice was created in one act for a soprano castrato, with the role of Orfeo in a higher voice then the original. Here, it will be performed by The Göteborg Opera's mezzo-soprano Katarina Karnéus, who is leaving the alto voice of this role for the soprano's range. Her Euridice will be international soprano Kerstin Avemo. This will be an exciting reunion for this pair, who had the audience rejoicing with their interpretations of Romeo and Juliet in Bellini's I Capuleti e i Montecchi last season. Amor is sung by Mia Karlsson.
The artistic team, with our in-house director David Radok at its head, has a long-term relationship with our opera house and our audience. After the successes with Dvořák's Rusalka, expectations are high for yet another enormously enchanting production of timeless mythology. Conductor and baroque expert, Laurence Cummings, has been a visiting conductor with us before, with the Handel operas Julius Caesar and Alcina. International eyes will also be drawn towards this production, since we will be the first opera house in the world to use the new source-evaluation edition of the Parma version.