2018, the year of the Celebrations of the 150th anniversary of the death of Gioachino Rossini, was a turning point for the Rossini Opera Festival: thanks to the new opportunities created by the anniversary, the Festival was able to start a project of de-seasonalization and internationalization of the its own activity which in the coming years will be further expanded, also through contacts and opportunities for collaboration born during the last few months.
In 2018, thanks to the collaboration with the Committee for the Rossini Celebrations and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, recitals, master classes, conferences, cycles of video projections and meetings were held in Buenos Aires, Vienna, Riga, Sofia, Lima, Krakow, Jakarta , Tirana, Vlora, Pristina, Hanover, Nicosia, Zurich, Garmisch-Panterkirchen, Sydney, Los Angeles, Berlin, Athens, Daegu, Oslo, Wolfsburg, Kuala Lumpur, Strasbourg, Courmayeur, Beijing, Marseilles, Algiers, Moscow.
The highlights of the promotional activity were held in Paris. Last June, the 2018 Festival program was presented to international diplomatic authorities and the French press at UNESCO. Last month, on the anniversary of Rossini's death, ROF President Daniele Vimini paid homage to his cenotaph in the Père-Lachaise Cemetery; the next day, in the Grand Amphithéâtre of the University of the Sorbonne, the Petite messe solennelle, the last composition of the Pesaro-based genius, was performed.
Last week, the Sovrintendente Ernesto Palacio held a day of auditions for the Accademia Rossiniana "Alberto Zedda" at the List Hall of the Metropolitan Opera Theater in New York, thanks to the collaboration of the Lindemann Artist Development Program, which deals with the formation of new artists of the Met. In the previous days, the Sovrintendente listened to numerous other singers in the First Church of Christ, Scientist.
The de-seasonalization of the activity, extended from the summer to the whole year, will be organized in 2019 in three main events to be held in Pesaro (late February / early March: Rossini's Non-Birthday Week; July-August: Accademia Rossiniana " Alberto Zedda "and Rossini Opera Festival, November: Rossini's death, Notte Bianca della Musica and Festa di Santa Cecilia) and a series of numerous other events in Italy and abroad, according to the format of 2018, which will bring ROF, the Accademia Rossiniana and its artists in Italy and around the world to promote and spread the music of Rossini and, together, Pesaro, UNESCO Creative City of Music.
In particular, in February 2019, the ROF will produce for the first time an opera outside of its traditional summer calendar: La cambiale di matrimonio, scheduled at the Teatro Rossini in Pesaro, created in collaboration with the Rossini Conservatory of Pesaro and the School of Scenography at the Academy of Fine Arts in Urbino.
In the same period, the collaboration will continue with the Royal Opera House in Muscat (Oman), which will host March 7 and 8, 2019 La scala di seta, a ROF production staged in 2009 in Pesaro and then also seen at La Scala. The five-year partnership with the Omani theater concerns the five Rossini farces: after L'occasione fa il ladro in 2017 and La scala di seta, foreseen L'inganno felice in 2020 and the co-productions of La cambiale di matrimonio and Il Signor Bruschino in 2021 and 2022.
The President Daniele Vimini announced: "We have activated new pre-selection methods for the students of the Accademia Rossiniana, creating three strategic hubs (in New York, Moscow and Seoul) that will allow us to broaden the possibilities of listening to young talents from all over the world and to organize masterclasses and events. The ROF will extend its calendar: it will begin at the end of February with an opera staged on the occasion of Rossini's birthday and will close with another event in November, coinciding with the anniversary of his death: in 2019 it will be Paolo Fresu to propose a revisitation of the Petite messe solennelle. "
The Sovrintendente Ernesto Palacio confirms the strong tendency to open: "The Rof widens locally with the extension of the activity in February and November. La cambiale di matrimonio will be co-produced with the Teatro lirico di Cagliari, which will then stage it in April. In February 2020 it will the turn of L'Italiana in Algeri, staged by Michele Mirabella. We pay much attention towards the city, which has shown great desire for Rossini music throughout the year. Speaking of co-productions, the Semiramide (ROF 2019) will be realized with the Theater of Liège. With ROH Muscat a five-year partnership is active with two co-productions (La cambiale di matrimonio and Il Signor Bruschino). As for Eduardo and Cristina, the only opera that is missing from the Rossini catalog, it will be co-produced in 2021 with the Opera di Firenze. "
The Mayor of Pesaro Matteo Ricci closed the conference: "I am very satisfied with the work done. The succession to Gianfranco Mariotti was not easy, but Vimini, Palacio and the Board of the Festival were very good at opening a new phase. From a situation of possible impasse the Festival has been able to re-launch itself with a new project and new energy, on the wings of the Rossini Celebrations and the recognition of Pesaro as a UNESCO City of Music. The watchwords are de-seasonalization and internationalization. There is a new awareness of the city on the importance of music for its life and its future. "