Jennifer Rowley, Yonghoon Lee and Anita Rachvelishvili star in Verdi's IL TROVATORE
Verdi's Il Trovatore returns to the Met January 22 for eight performances starring Jennifer Rowley in her Met role debut as the heroine Leonora, with Yonghoon Lee as Manrico, a role he sang to acclaim with the company in 2015. Anita Rachvelishvili sings the role of the mysterious gypsy, Azucena; Quinn Kelsey and Luca Salsi share the role of Manrico's rival, Count di Luna; and Štefan Kocán and Kwangchul Youn both sing the role of Ferrando. Dolora Zajick sings her signature role of Azucena for one performance on February 6, 2018. Led by Marco Armiliato, Il Trovatore is one of three productions directed by Sir David McVicar which can be seen on the Met stage this month, with his Tosca and Cavalleria Rusticana/Pagliacci also in the current repertory.
Jennifer Rowley has previously sung the role of Leonora with Théâtre de Caen, Théâtres de la Ville de Luxembourg, and Opéra de Lille. She made her Met debut as Musetta in Puccini's La Bohème in 2014, and last year received critical acclaim making her role debut at short notice as Roxane in Alfano's Cyrano de Bergerac. On January 12 she sang the title role in the Met's new production of Puccini's Tosca, a part she has also sung with New Orleans Opera and Dresden's Sächsische Staatsoper. Her other performances include the title role in Barber's Vanessa with Toledo Opera and as Musetta in La Bohème at the Royal Opera, Covent Garden.
Anita Rachvelishvili sings her first Verdi role with the Met in Il Trovatore. She has previously sung the title role in Bizet's Carmen for the company in 2011 for her debut and again in 2012, 2013 and 2014, as well as with major opera companies around the world, including La Scala; the Royal Opera, Covent Garden; Teatro Regio in Torino; Deutsche Oper Berlin; Bavarian State Opera; Arena di Verona; and Seattle Opera. In 2014 she sang Konchakovna in the Met's new production of Borodin's Prince Igor. Other performances include Amneris in Aida at Arena di Verona and Detroit Opera, Lyubasha in The Tsar's Bride at Berlin State Opera, and the Principessa de Boullion in Cilea's Adriana Lecouvreur in her Carnegie Hall debut.
As well as at the Met, Yonghoon Lee has previously sung the role of Manrico at the Bavarian State Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, and at the Theater an der Wien during the Vienna Festival. The South Korean made his Met debut in the title role of Verdi's Don Carlo in 2010, and previous roles at the Met include Don José in Bizet's Carmen, Ismaele in Verdi'sNabucco and Turiddu in Mascagni's Cavalleria Rusticana.
Štefan Kocán previously sang the role of Ferrando at the Met in 2011 and in 2015. He made his Met debut in 2009 as the King in Aida. Other roles at the Met have included the Grand Inquisitor in Don Carlo, Khan Konchak in Borodin's Prince Igor, Gremin in Eugene Onegin, Sparafucile in Rigoletto, and the Commendatore in Don Giovanni.
Kwangchul Youn previously sang the role of Ferrando at the Met in 2016 and has also sung the part at La Scala and the Munich Opera Festival. Following his company debut in 2004 in Mozart's Die Zauberflöte, he has sung Narbal in Berlioz's Les Troyens, Raimondo in Donizetti's Lucia di Lammermoor, Sparafucile in Rigoletto, and King Marke in Wagner'sTristan und Isolde, and Talbot in Donizetti's Maria Stuarda.
Maestro Armiliato, who led the production in 2015, has conducted more than 400 performances with the Met since his debut in 1998. In recent years, he has conducted performances at the Vienna State Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Zurich Opera, and Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona. Later in 2018 he leads three Puccini operas at the Met: La Bohème, Madama Butterfly, and Turandot.
Il Trovatore Radio Broadcasts
The January 22 and February 3 performances of Il Trovatore will be broadcast live on Metropolitan Opera Radio on SIRIUS XM Channel 75. The performance on January 22 will also be streamed live on the Met's website, www.metopera.org.
The February 3 performance will be broadcast live over the Toll Brothers-Metropolitan Opera International Radio Network.
PHOTO: Yonghoon Lee as Manrico in Verdi's Il Trovatore. Photo by Marty Sohl/Metropolitan Opera