2016 Festival Verdi in Parma and Busseto to be Held in October

Tradition, a desire to embrace the new and the ever increasing international profile are the predominant features of the 2016 edition of the Festival Verdi in Parma and Busseto. This year's festival, returning for the month of October (www.festivalverdi.it), will be dedicated to the German poet and playwright Friedrich Schiller, who has always been a source of inspiration and subject matter for Italian composers throughout time, including above all Giuseppe Verdi.

For the first time ever the Festival Verdi was first presented in January, with related travel offers, at the beginning of the 2016 tourist season to reach the international traveling public who plan musical and cultural trips well in advance. The international promotion of Festival Verdi has been organized by the Emilia-Romagna Tourist Board in collaboration with their tour operator partner Parma Incoming, and with a roadshow touching on all major European trade fairs and Italian Cultural Institutes abroad.

The 2016 edition of Festival Verdi will be hosted in places of great fascination and historical significance: the Teatro Regio di Parma, the Teatro Giuseppe Verdi in Busseto and the extraordinary Teatro Farnese in Parma.

There are four operas in the program, Don Carlo, Giovanna d'Arco, I masnadieri and Il Trovatore. Three of these are new productions that feature, among others, Saskia Boddeke and Peter Greenaway, Daniel Oren, Massimo Zanetti, the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini, James Conlon and the Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della Rai. AroundVerdi is a series of related events with five world première Festival commissions presented here for the first time with performances by artists of the caliber of Vinicio Capossela, Uri Caine Ensemble and Ugo Pagliai.

Travel packages are available with overnight stays and the best seats in the Theatre for performances as well as visits to Verdi's homes in Parma, Busseto and Roncole to experience a full immersion in the art and life of Giuseppe Verdi.

The 2016 Festival Verdi will begin on 1st October at the Teatro Regio di Parma with Don Carlo, which returns after eighteen years, in a new production by Cesare Lievi, a specialist in Schiller and German drama, with scenes and costumes by Maurizio Balò, co-produced by the Carlo Felice Foundation of Genoa, the Òpera de Tenerife and the Teatro Nacional São Carlo of Lisbon. Wielding the baton on the podium of the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini is Daniel Oren who will conduct the four act version of 1884 with a cast including Michele Pertusi making his debut in the role of Philip II, José Bros as Don Carlo, Vladimir Stoyanov as Rodrigo, Ievghen Orlov as the Great Inquisitor, Maria José Siri as Elisabetta de Valois and Marianne Cornetti as the Princess d'Eboli (performances on 5, 8 and 11 October).

Saskia Boddeke and Peter Greenaway have created a new production of Giovanna d'Arco at the Teatro Farnese (beginning on 2 October with performances on 9, 15, 20) which brings melodrama back to one of the most evocative and unique places in the world and inaugurates the project Great Masters at the Farnese. The artists performing in the XVII century wooden theatre will be Vittoria Yeo as Giovanna, Luciano Ganci as Carlo VII and Vittorio Vitelli as Giacomo, guided by Ramon Tebar, for the first time at the Festival Verdi, at the head of the orchestra I Virtuosi Italiani.

I masnadieri has its debut in Busseto on 7 October (performances on 10, 14, 16, 21, 23, 28 and 29 October) in the staging created by Leo Muscato for the Teatro Regio of Parma and adapted for the Teatro Giuseppe Verdi in Busseto, with scenes by Federica Parolini, costumes by Silvia Aymonino and lighting by Alessandro Verazzi. Conducting the Orchestra dell'Opera Italiana, Simon Kre?i? will guide the Artists from the International singing competition Voci Verdiane "Città di Busseto" in collaboration with the Scuola dell'Opera del Teatro Comunale di Bologna.

Il Trovatore has its debut at the Teatro Regio di Parma on 21 October (performances on 23, 27, 30 October) in a new staging by Elisabetta Courir with scenes by Marco Rossi, who recently won the Ubu prize for Ronconi's Lehman trilogy, costumes by Marta Del Fabbro and lighting by Alessandro Cantarelli. Massimo Zanetti conducts on the podium of the Filarmonica Arturo Toscanini guiding a cast led by George Petean as the Count of Luna, Dinara Alieva as Leonora, Enkelejda Shkosa as Azucena and Murat Karahan as Manrico.

The Chorus of the Teatro Regio di Parma, prepared by Martino Faggiani, will be performing in all four operas presented during the Festival.

The Farnese Theatre will also be the stage for AroundVerdi, this section of the festival is dedicated to musical synergy with five special commissions presented for the first time. Among those taking part, AroundVerdi will feature Vinicio Capossela (6 October), Ugo Pagliai (18 October) who will interpret Kafka's Letter to My Father about the unresolved conflict between father and son, to the music of the Quartetto Prometeo, Schiller Gala (13 October), and the Uri Caine Ensemble (29 October).

An original videomapping project will première at the Festival at 10:30pm on 30 September. This forward-thinking initiative will project a Monument to Verdi onto the majestic walls of the Pilotta Palace accompanied by the electronically re-elaborated melodies of some of the most celebrated arias from Aida, Nabucco, La traviata, Rigoletto and La forza del destino.

To celebrate the Festival Verdi, the tour operator partner Parma Incoming is offering the dedicated package Experience the Festival Verdi: Great Music and the small capital. The package includes an overnight stay, a dinner and prime seating for two opera performances, as well as a visit to the Verdi Homelands: the birth house at Roncole, the Museum in Barezzi's House, the Busseto Verdi Theatre, the National Giuseppe Verdi Museum and the new Renata Tebaldi Museum both housed in the Pallavicino Villa, and the Villa Verdi at Sant'Agata. The tour can be continued and customized choosing among various options including a backstage visit to the Festival Theatres (wardrobe, scene painting room, rehearsal spaces, dressing rooms and the stage), a visit to the historical center of Parma or a tour to the Castles of the Duchy, a gala dinner before or after the opera, a gourmet tour with tastings in the typical delicatessens of this territory, where to discover just those products which the Maestro - passionately fond of agriculture and of the food of his land - used to share with his most important guests.

The exclusive image of the Festival is the Verdi portrait pencil drawn by Renato Guttuso in the '60s and donated to the Teatro Regio di Parma by the historical Bocchi Archive and conceded by Fabio Carapezza Guttuso © Renato Guttuso by SIAE 2016.

The Festival Verdi has been realized thanks to the contribution of the Parma Municipality, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, ReggioParma Festival and the Emilia-Romagna Region. Main partner Cariparma Crédit Agricole. Major partner Fondazione Cariparma. Media partner Mediaset.

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