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Maria Stuarda (concert version)

Gaetano Donizetti (1797 – 1848)

Concert version
Oper in two acts
Libretto by Giuseppe Bardari, based on Friedrich Schiller's „Maria Stuart“
First performance on 30th December 1835 at Teatro alla Scala in Milan
Premiered at the Deutsche Oper Berlin on 28th May 2018

In Italian language with German and English surtitels

2 hrs 45 mins / 1 interval

Pre-performance lecture (in German): 45 minutes prior to each performance

Cast

Chorus-Master

Jeremy Bines

Maria Stuarda

Diana Damrau

Elisabetta I.

Jana Kurucová

Graf Leicester

Javier Camarena

Georg Talbot

Nicolas Testé

Sir William Cecil

Dong-Hwan Lee

Anna Kennedy

Annika Schlicht

The Concert Programme

The banning of an opera on the charge that it created too much of a stir among the audience was no cause for surprise in the period of the Risorgimento, the Italian independence movement in the first half of the 19th century, but it was a fate that dogged Gaetano Donizetti throughout his career, and no more so than with his opera MARIA STUARDA. The Queen of the Two Sicilies, Maria Christina of Naples, is said to have been so overcome by the confessional scene at the end of the last act that she fainted, leading to the work being banned. Even if the story of the royal swoon owed more to fiction than fact, the truth of the matter in no way mitigated the explosive nature of the work in question. In the eyes of officialdom, an executed queen could not be the heroine of an opera. In the late 1950s MARIA STUARDA was rediscovered and recognised for what it was - a bel canto masterpiece and a pearl for every Donizetti fan. Following in the footsteps of Joan Sutherland, Montserrat Caballé and (latterly at the Deutsche Oper Berlin) Joyce DiDonato, Diana Damrau, one of the great bel canto prima donnas of our times, now presents her rendition of the hapless monarch.