Randall Scotting Comes to Hamburg in VENERE E ADONE This Month

Performances run 28 May-8 June 2023. 

By: May. 11, 2023
Randall Scotting Comes to Hamburg in VENERE E ADONE This Month

Renowned American countertenor Randall Scotting, who has become one-to-watch on the stages of Europe, will lead the world premiere of Italian composer Salvatore Sciarrino's new opera Venere e Adone in five performances at the Staatsoper Hamburg from 28 May-8 June 2023. Scotting sings the role of Adone, the beautiful young man of myth who is pursued by Venere, the goddess of love, sung by soprano Layla Claire. The opera is conducted by Staatsoper Hamburg's General Music Director, Kent Nagano.

Randall Scotting is consistently recognized for winning over audiences with his stunning vocal prowess, beautiful tone, and charismatic stage presence in contemporary and baroque works. He is sought-after by many of the world's most esteemed opera houses, and in recent years he has performed at the Royal Opera House (London), the Bayerische Staatsoper, Seattle Opera, and many others. Increasingly he has been in-demand as an interpreter of contemporary works, including those of Georg Friedrich Haas, Jonathan Dove, Péter Eötvös, Maxwell Davies, Xenakis, Ligeti, and Schoenberg. Along with his vocal and dramatic gifts, Scotting has a singular physicality among countertenors: a muscular bodybuilder standing at 6'3" tall.

Salvatore Sciarrino, who is described as 'the best-known and most performed Italian composer' of the present day, has created an atmospheric and inventive opera that often surrounds the audience in the nuanced sounds of the natural world. Mimicking the cycle of life and death, sounds arise from nothing and just as quickly disappear, leaving the listener engaged, interested, and waiting on the edge of their seats for the next surprise. 'Adonis is probably the liveliest character in the whole opera. He is youthful, boisterous, and concerned only with hunting and making love. The music Sciarrino composed for him really embodies these qualities, especially in his big hunting scene. There are aspects of the opera everyone will recognize, but it also feels new and relevant today,' said Scotting of his role in the opera.

Venere e Adone is loosely based both on Ovid's Venus and Adonis myth, as well as Shakespeare's 16th-century poem, Venus and Adonis. The story is a sad one, as the beautiful Adonis' love for Venus proves fatal in the end. When Adonis finds the wild monster whom he has been obsessed with hunting, he is devoured limb-to-limb by the animal in a lust and rage-filled encounter. Venus is bereft at Adonis' death, and the ancient story ends with the meditation 'who triumphs, love or death?'.


Randall Scotting is known for the rich, full warmth of his voice, as well as his skilled dramatic interpretations. Last season he made his debut with the Bayerische Staatsoper in Georg Friederich Haas' modern opera, Thomas. In 2021 he was the lead in Seattle Opera's production of Jonathan Dove's Flight, to great critical acclaim. He performed for sold-out audiences at Convent Garden in 2019 in Britten's Death in Venice at the Royal Opera in London and he joined the Metropolitan Opera in 2020 to cover Agrippina and returned to the Met for the 2021-22 season to cover performances of Matthew Aucoin's Eurydice. His debut album, The Crown: Heroic Arias for Senesino, (Signum Classics, November 2022) was hailed by BBC Music Magazine who stated, "countertenor Randall Scotting lets loose a ravishing vocalism." Its follow-up, Lovesick (Signum, February 2023) was described in Limelight as "It is all just too beautiful." His third album, coming out in early November 2023, will be a first-of-its-kind concert album of 17th-century gay love duets along with tenor Jorge Navarro Colorado. Scotting's singing has been described as "expressive, flexible...excellent" by the New York Times and, according to Opernwelt, "his voice has a broad spectrum of colours and great variety of expressive nuance." He was Musical America's featured New Artist in July 2021. He has performed in collaboration with Santa Fe Opera, at Carnegie Hall, London's National Gallery, and Italy's Spoleto Festival, among many other venues. In October 2023 Scotting will perform he lead role of Ruggiero in Handel's Alcina with Seattle Opera, followed by Goffredo in Rinaldo for Pinchgut Opera in Sydney, and the title role in Handel's Amadigi for Ars Lyrica Houston. Scotting holds a PhD in 18th-century Italian opera from London's Royal College of Music.


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