Houston Grand Opera to 2013-14 Season with AIDA Tonight
Houston Grand Opera (HGO) opens its 2013-14 season tonight with a revival of its classic production of Verdi's Aida. The production, which runs through November 9, is conducted by Italian maestro Antonino Fogliani and stars the National Opera of Ukraine's Liudmyla Monastyrska as Aida, the role that garnered her critical acclaim at the Metropolitan Opera last year. The New York Times described Monastyrska in her U.S. debut in the title role as "gifted with a luscious round soprano that maintains its glow even in the softest notes." Mezzo Dolora Zajick returns to one of her signature roles, Amneris; Italian tenor Riccardo Massi sings Radamès; and Texas baritone and HGO Studio alumnus Scott Hendricks sings Aida's father, Amonasro. The production is designed by British designer Zandra Rhodes, directed by José Maria Condemi, and choreographed by Dominic Walsh in the inaugural collaboration between HGO and Walsh's Houston-based Dominic Walsh Dance Theater.
Next week, for the first time in thirty years, HGO presents Die Fledermaus by Viennese composer Johann Strauss II. Australian director Lindy Hume relocates the operetta, originally set in imperial Austria-Hungary, to Art Deco 1930s Manhattan. The production, conducted by Thomas Rösner, sees HGO Studio alumnus Liam Bonner as Eisenstein and soprano Wendy Bryn Harmer as Rosalinde. Susan Graham, HGO's Lynn Wyatt Great Artist for 2013-14, sings Prince Orlofsky while soprano and HGO Studio alumna Laura Claycomb sings Adele, and four-time Grammy Award-winner Anthony Dean Griffey portrays Alfredo. The production will run at the Wortham Center through November 10.