The production of Mosè in Egitto staged in August last year at the Rossini Opera Festival has been awarded the XXXI premio Abbiati (Abbiati prize), by a unanimous verdict of the Italian faculty of music critics, as the best theatrical production of 2011. Among the most intensely exciting productions in all the thirty years of the Festival, succeeding in enchanting, moving and even making audiences feel uneasy, Mosè in Egitto was truly a major event in the world of international opera last year, besides giving rise to impassioned discussion on the placing of the action in our own times, at the heart of the conflict in the Middle East.
The Associazione Nazionale Critici Musicali, in conferring this recognition, which might be described as the Oscar of classical music in Italy, explained their choice as follows: “For the inventive, anti-conventional, courageous reading proposed by the director Graham Vick, vital in its symbolical confrontation with the dramaturgy of the opera, transposed to modern times, together with the set designer Stuart Nunn, with the sumptuous symphonic architecture of the ensembles illuminated by the conductor Roberto Abbado, and with the dedicated cast of singers, among whom may be cited the remarkable voices of Alex Esposito, Sonia Ganassi, Dmitri Korchak, Riccardo Zanellato and Yijie Shi as well as the supportng cast of local singers in the smaller parts, all transformed the unfortunate PalaAdriatic Arena into a modern theatrical model.”
This is the ninth premio Abbiati conferred upon the ROF: in 1982 the Festival won the prize for being the best musical initiative of the year; in 1984 with Il viaggio a Reims (best theatrical production); in 1990 with Ricciardo e Zoraide (best scenery and costumes: Gae Aulenti and Giovanna Buzzi); in 1997 with Moïse et Pharaon (best stage direction: Graham Vick); in 1998 with La Cenerentola (best costumes: Margherita Palli); in 2004 with Matilde di Shabran (best stage direction: Mario Martone), to be revived at the ROF in 2012; in 2007 with La gazza ladra (best stage direction: Damiano Michieletto); in 2008 with Ermione (best conducting: Roberto Abbado); in 2010 with Sigismondo (best scenery and costumes: Paolo Fantin and Carla Teti).
The prize will be given on Friday 25th May at 5.00 p.m. at the Teatro Donizetti, Bergamo.