A month of Rossini anniversaries

27 May 2021
May is a month full of Rossini anniversaries. The first is La scala di seta, staged on May 9, 1812 at the Teatro San Moisè in Venice. The farce was proposed for the first time at the Rossini Opera Festival in 1988 directed by Maurizio Scaparro and conducted by Gabriele Ferro, a production resumed two years later and conducted by Antonello Allemandi. In 2000, a new production was staged by Luca De Filippo and conducted by Alberto Zedda and Maurizio Benini. In 2009 the new production by Damiano Micheletto, conducted by Claudio Scimone, then resumed in 2011 with José Miguel Pérez-Sierra on the podium, became one of the most exported productions by the Festival in its history.

The second anniversary is that of Demetrio and Polibio, performed on 18 May 1812 at the Teatro Valle in Rome. At the Rossini Opera Festival it was presented in 2010 in the staging by Davide Livermore and conducted by Corrado Rovaris; in 2019 the same staging is resumed with Paolo Arrivabeni on the podium.

The third anniversary concerns L'Italiana in Algeri, staged on 22 May 1813 at the Teatro San Benedetto in Venice. The opera was presented for the first time at the Rossini Opera Festival in 1981 staged by Egisto Marcucci and conducted by Donato Renzetti. Marcucci’s production was resumed the following year with the same conductor. In 1994 Dario Fo signed a new production conducted by David Robertson, revived in 2006 under the direction of Donato Renzetti; in 2013 Davide Livermore staged a new production, conducted by José Ramón Encinar.

The last birthday is that of La gazza ladra, premiered at the Teatro alla Scala on 31 May 1817. The Rossini Opera Festival was inaugurated in 1980 with this opera. The direction was entrusted to Gianandrea Gavazzeni , while the staging was by Sandro Sequi. The set-up was revived the following year with Alberto Zedda on the podium. In 1989 Michael Hampe signed a new production with Gianluigi Gelmetti as conductor. In 2007 Damiano Micheletto staged a new production with Lü Jia on the podium; in 2015, the same production was conducted by Donato Renzetti.