The Stabat Mater closes the XXXVIII Rossini Opera Festival

20 August 2017

On Tuesday 22nd August at 8.30 p.m. at the Teatro Rossini, in the closing ceremony of the XXXVIII edition of the Rossini Opera Festival, the Stabat Mater will be performed, one of the most loved works in the Rossini canon: the soloists will be Salome Jicia and Dmitry Korchak (who triumphed in the title rôles of Torvaldo e Dorliska this year) together with Erwin Schrott, returning to Pesaro, and Enkelejda Shkoza.  After his success with La pietra del paragone, Daniele Rustioni will once again conduct the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale of the RAI and the Chorus of the Teatro Ventidio Basso.  The Stabat Mater will be preceded by the Religious Prelude from the Petite Messe Solennelle, orchestrated by Alberto Zedda, as a tribute to the memory of this great Maestro to whom the ROF 2017 has been dedicated.

As has become our happy custom, this final concert will be projected in live video in Piazza del Popolo, in collaboration with the Pesaro Town Council.

Rossini was offered the opportunity to compose the Stabat Mater during a journey through Spain that he undertook in 1831, accompanying his banker friend the Marquis Alejandro Maria Aguado.  In Madrid he met the Archdeacon of the city, Don Francisco Fernandez de Varela, who urged him to compose a Stabat Mater.  Rossini returned to Paris and set about composing the work: he completed six numbers in 1832, while the six remaining pieces were set by one of his old fellow-students at Padre Mattei’s school, Giuseppe Tadolini.  In this form the Stabat Mater was performed on Good Friday 1833 in the Chapel of San Felipe el Real in Madrid.  In 1841 Rossini took up the score again, revised it, completed it and composed four numbers to replace the six written by Tadolini ten years previously.  The first public performance of the final version took place at the Théâtre  Italien, Paris, on the 7th January 1842.  The work was extraordinarily successful.  The first Italian performance, with a pianoforte accompaniment and with the choral parts reduced (limited to male voices only) was on the 4th March 1842 in the church of Sant’Antonio, Milan, followed by a complete private performance, with all parts, on the 14th March at the MacDonald house in Florence.  On the evenings of the 18th, 19th and 20th March 1842 the work was publicly performed  in the concert room of the Archiginnasio, Bologna: Rossini personally assisted in mounting the work and Gaetano Donizetti was summoned to conduct it.