The second operatic offering from the Rossini Opera Festival 2012: Matilde di Shabran (performances on 11th, 14th, 17th and 20th August at 8.00 p.m. at the Adriatic Arena) is a revival of a production that, in 2004, achieved one of the warmest successes of all the thirty years of the Festival’s existence. Mario Martone’s production, that won the Abbiati prize in 2005, involving scenery by Sergio Tramonti, costumes by Ursula Patzak and lighting by Pasquale Mari, is characterized by a metaphysical air, between realism and the abstract, in which stage centre is dominated by a helicoidal double staircase, the entrance to the old castle that here is only imagined, evoked. It is inhabited by Corradino, called Cuor di Ferro (Iron-heart) for his total dedication to the art of war and for his exaggerated misogyny, Ginardo, the Keeper of the Tower, and Aliprando, a doctor. Corradino, who much against his will receives a visit from Matilde, is struck for the first time by Cupid’s dart and, in spite of all the wiles of the jealous Contessa d’Arco, who is trying to inveigle him into matrimony, he lets himself get carried away by his feelings and, in the end, opens his heart to goodness, making peace with his enemies.
The cast consists of Olga Peretyatko, Juan Diego Flórez, Nicola Alaimo, Anna Goryachova, Paolo Bordogna, Simon Orfila, Chiara Chialli, Marco Filippo Romano, Giorgio Misseri, Ugo Rosati and Luca Visani. Michele Mariotti will conduct the Chorus and Orchestra of the Teatro Comunale, Bologna.