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Dutch National Opera Announces 2022-2023 Season

The season includes CARMEN, THE GIRL, THE HUNTER AND THE WOLF - world première and more.

Dutch National Opera Announces 2022-2023 Season

Dutch National Opera has announced its 2022/2023 season, with La Liberté? as its central theme. It promises to be a jam-packed season with no fewer than 15 productions, 4 world premieres, 2 European premieres, 6 new productions, 4 family operas as well as a new edition of the Opera Forward Festival.

Striving for the right balance

DNO director Sophie de Lint: "Dutch National Opera wants to open up the art form to everyone. We want to reach people who have never seen or heard an opera before, to show them everything it has to offer. We are aiming to put together a well-balanced programme that includes various perspectives and contexts, as well as new modes of presentation. This season features operas from the classic repertoire alongside new works, established names alongside up-and-coming artists, and familiar, well-known opera stories alongside contemporary narratives and themes."

"This is instantly discernible in the first part of the new season, in which famous operas such as Carmen and Turandot are presented next to less known works such as Engelbert Humperdinck's Königskinder or the European première of the highly topical opera Blue by Jeanine Tesori. We will also feature the world première of Alexander Raskatov's Animal Farm, based on George Orwell's novel. And for our younger audiences, we have Vasco Mendonça's The Girl, the Hunter and the Wolf as well Operetta Land - a very special family project that sees theatre-maker Steef de Jong join forces with Lorenzo Viotti in a truly imaginative production that breathes new life into the operetta genre. In short, we want to showcase the entire spectrum of our vibrant art form."

This season's theme: La liberté?

The theme of freedom - iconic words from the opera Carmen, but with a question mark - is central to our upcoming season. Sophie de Lint: "In today's world - particularly in the past two years - we have had to cope with a number of crises that have posed a threat to our freedom. This has made us question how much freedom we actually have as a society and as individuals. The horrific invasion of Ukraine occurred after we had set the theme for this new season, and brought the concept of freedom to the very fore - not just in terms of its geopolitical significance, but primarily in terms of how fragile freedom actually is." De Lint elaborates: "The new season's projects cannot provide solutions to these issues, but they do offer multiple perspectives on the concept of freedom and reveal the lengths individuals will go to in order to pursue freedom. George Orwell's political parable Animal Farm, which forms the basis for Alexander Raskatov's new opera and is inextricably linked to the composer's own Russian background, is a clear illustration of this. The opera Blue tells the story of a Black family living in modern America. It presents a heart-breaking portrayal of the family's subjection to police brutality, while simultaneously highlighting the strength of the community. And many of this season's opera characters such as Joséphine Baker in Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine, or Carmen or Maria Stuarda bravely fought for freedom - they all did so in their own way. Finally, Ändere die Welt! - a music theatre project by young Dutch creatives Leonard Evers and Mart van Berckel along with the singers of Dutch National Opera Studio and the LUDWIG orchestra - emphasises, in music and words, how closely revolution is linked to the pursuit of freedom."

Artistic families

Sophie de Lint: "One of the most inspiring aspects of my work is bringing together artists, so that they form artistic teams and families. In this way, they can continue to deepen their connection with our opera house and our audiences when they return to Dutch National Opera". One such familiar artist who will be returning to Dutch National Opera in the new season is Julia Bullock, who will star in Perle Noire: Meditations for Joséphine. In addition, conductor Marc Albrecht and director Christof Loy will once again be partnering up in the new production of Königskinder. Soprano Julie Fuchs and conductor Emmanuelle Haïm - along with her ensemble Le Concert d'Astrée - will be bringing Händel's Giulio Cesare to life under the direction of Calixto Bieito. Bel Canto specialist Enrique Mazzola and director Jetske Mijnssen will be presenting Maria Stuarda - the second instalment in Donizetti`s Tudor trilogy, while chief conductor Lorenzo Viotti will continue his collaboration with Barrie Kosky on the 'Puccini trilogy' with Turandot. And Verdi's Messa da Requiem, directed and choreographed by Christian Spuck, will see Dutch National Opera further its collaboration with Dutch National Ballet.

A new generation of outstanding conductors

In his first season as chief conductor of Dutch National Opera and the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, Lorenzo Viotti has proven he is a world-class conductor as well as an audience favourite attracting a younger generation to the opera. This season, he will be conducting another grand repertoire piece, namely Der Rosenkavalier and he will be at the helm of the National Youth Orchestra of the Netherlands in Operetta Land. Besides Lorenzo, we will welcome a large array of first-rate conductors making their debut at Dutch National Opera: Joana Mallwitz will lead the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra in Rusalka, Eun Sun Kim will conduct the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra in Verdi's Messa da Requiem, Jordan de Souza will conduct the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra in Carmen and the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra will play Raskatov's score for Animal Farm, under Bassem Akiki's baton.

New talent
Sophie de Lint: "As a subsidised institution, we believe it is our duty and one of our most important missions to nurture and develop new talent within the arts". To this end, a second small stage will be built in the Boekmanzaal - which will be operational in the initial stage of renovation - and will give new, budding artists an opportunity to show their talent and to develop as they gradually prepare for the big stage. Naturally, Dutch National Opera Studio will feature prominently in the programme so that young singers are able to gain plenty of experience through regular appearances.

Opera Forward Festival

"Talent development is crucial. It is however as important that we listen to the messages from new generation. They are a huge source of energy and inspiration - we learn from them on a daily basis and they help shape the direction we want to head in. It is by listening to them that we gain insight into what is relevant to society and the public." The Opera Forward Festival is the place to make this happen. It bridges the gap between internationally renowned artists, new creatives and students working on their very first opera during the OFF labs. The festival is the ultimate opera laboratory - it embraces new methods and techniques when it comes to creativity and presentation, forging connections between opera and other art forms. In this way, it opens up and expands the definition of opera as a genre. In many ways, the festival is considered a locomotive for change and experimentation as it powers ahead towards the future. OFF's impact therefore goes far beyond the realm of the festival, it is pivotal in helping shape the new season and DNO's future.

To see the entire season guide, please click here. If you would like to receive a hard copy, please provide your postal address via e-mail. Please always consult our website for the most up-to-date performance dates

Season 2022 / 2023

CARMEN - revival

Georges Bizet
Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Jordan de Souza
Director: Robert Carsen
Cast: J'Nai Bridges, Stanislas de Barbeyrac, Lukasz Golinski, Adriana González
Performance dates: 3 - 22 September 2022

KÖNIGSKINDER - new production

Engelbert Humperdinck
Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Marc Albrecht
Director: Christof Loy
Cast: Daniel Behle, Olga Kulchinska, Josef Wagner, Doris Soffel
Performance dates: 6 - 22 October 2022


Vasco Mendonça
Director: Inne Goris
Co-produced with LOD muziektheater (Gent) and Teatro Luís de Camões (Lisbon)
Performance dates: 15 - 23 October 2022

BLUE - European première
Jeanine Tesori & Tazewell Thompson
The Hague Philharmonic, led by Kwamé Ryan
Director: Tazewell Thompson
Cast: Kenneth Kellog, Elizabeth Llewellyn, Thando Mjandana, Will Liverman
Co-produced with The Glimmerglass Festival, Washington National Opera and Lyric Opera of Chicago
Performance dates: 7 - 22 November 2022

OPERETTA LAND - new production

Strauss jr, Offenbach, Sullivan, etc.
National Youth Orchestra of the Netherlands, led by Lorenzo Viotti, Aldert Vermeulen
Director: Steef de Jong
Cast: Elenora Hu, Michael Wilmering, Ian Castro
Performance dates: 20 - 27 November, 28 and 30 December 2022

TURANDOT - new production

Giacomo Puccini
Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Lorenzo Viotti
Director: Barrie Kosky
Cast: Tamara Wilson, Kristina Mkhitaryan/Ruzan Mantashyan, Najmiddin Mavlyanov/Martin Muehle
Performance dates: 2 - 30 December 2022

HET LIJFLIED - world première

Lucas Wiegerink
Director: Alma Terrasse
Co-produced with Opera Zuid and November Music
Performance dates: September 2022 up to January 2023

GIULIO CESARE - new production

Georg F Händel
Le Concert d'Astrée, led by Emmanuelle Haïm
Director: Calixto Bieito
Cast: Julie Fuchs, Emily d'Angelo, Christophe Dumaux, Teresa Iervolino
Co-produced with Gran Teatre del Liceu (Barcelona)
Performance dates: 16 January - 5 February 2023

MESSA DA REQUIEM - new production featuring DNO and HNB

Giuseppe Verdi
Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Eun Sun Kim
Director: Christian Spuck
Cast: Federica Lombardi/Guanqun Yu, Yulia Matochkina/Agnieszka Rehlis, Freddie de Tommaso, Alexander Vinogradov
Original production by Opernhaus Zürich
Performance dates: 9 - 25 February 2023

Opera Forward Festival 2023

ANIMAL FARM - world première

Alexander Raskatov
Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, led by Bassem Akiki
Director: Damiano Michieletto
Cast: Misha Kiria, Elena Vassilieva, Marcel Beekman, Helena Rasker
Co-produced by Dutch National Opera, Wiener Staatsoper and Teatro Massimo (Palermo)
Performance dates: 3 - 16 March 2023


Tyshawn Sorey
International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE)
Director: Peter Sellars
Cast: Julia Bullock
Co-produced with Théâtre du Châtelet (Paris)
Performance dates: 9 - 13 March 2023

ÄNDERE DIE WELT! - world première:

Leonard Evers / Mart van Berckel
LUDWIG orchestra, led by Leonard Evers
Director: Mart van Berckel
Cast: Dutch National Opera Studio singers
Co-produced with Nederlandse Reisopera and Opera Zuid, presented in collaboration with Theater De Meervaart
Performance dates: 10 - 12 March 2023


Richard Strauss
Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, led by Lorenzo Viotti
Director: Jan Philipp Gloger
Cast: Maria Bengtsson, Angela Brower, Christof Fischesser
Performance dates: 13 April - 02 May 2023

MARIA STUARDA - new production

Gaetano Donizetti
Netherlands Chamber Orchestra, led by Enrique Mazzola
Director: Jetske Mijnssen
Cast: Marina Rebeka, Aigul Akhmetshina, Ismael Jordi
Co-produced with Teatro San Carlo (Naples) and Palau de les Arts Reina Sofia (Valencia)
Performance dates: 6 - 28 May 2023

BE OPERA XL - new production

Puccini, Verdi, Mozart, Monteverdi, etc.
Music performed by Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra
Director: Eric Robillard
Cast: Ton Meijer, Marijje van Stralen, Makudu Senaoana, Liza Lozica
Performance dates: 24 - 28 May 2023

RUSALKA - new production

Antonín Dvořák
Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, led by Joana Mallwitz
Director: Philipp Stölzl
Cast: Johanni van Oostrum, Annette Dasch, Raehann Bryce-Davis, Pavel Černoch, Maxim Kuzmin-Karavaev
To be performed during the Holland Festival
Performance dates: 2 - 25 June 2023

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