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The British premiere of Martinů’s comic opera Mirandolina, directed by Martin Duncan and conducted by Martin André, is one of the three operas featured during the twentieth anniversary season of Garsington Opera. This production, in the fiftieth anniversary year of Martinů’s death, marks the first time that Garsington Opera has mounted an opera by the twentieth century Czech composer. The festival (3 June – 5 July) in addition presents two new productions - Rossini’s La Cenerentola, (directed by Daniel Slater and conducted by David Parry) and, for the first time at Garsington Opera, Beethoven’s Fidelio. Directed by John Cox and conducted by Douglas Boyd, Fidelio opens the festival which, once again, features an array of distinguished and rising talent.

Operas take place in the beautiful historical setting of Garsington Manor with its Italianate garden, seven miles outside Oxford, made famous during the Bloomsbury era when Ottoline Morrell and her husband Philip lived there.

MIRANDOLINA

The British premiere of Mirandolina, in a new English translation by Jeremy Sams, is Garsington Opera’s first ever production of an opera by Bohuslav Martinů. Marking the fiftieth anniversary of Martinů’s death, this delightful comic piece is directed by Martin Duncan and designed by Francis O’Connor – the duo responsible for Garsington Opera’s Ariadne auf Naxos and Opera North’s acclaimed production of Jonathan Dove’s The Adventures of Pinocchio, just mounted in Minneapolis. Written in 1954 and first performed in 1959, Mirandolina is based on an eighteenth century farce, La locandiera, by Carlo Goldoni. A beautiful inn-keeper, the eponymous Mirandolina, plays three suitors off against each other under the eye of her manservant Fabrizio, who is in love with her. The title role is sung by the beautiful Colombian soprano Juanita Lascarro, a principal soloist in Oper Frankfurt and who has sung at Garsington Opera in Le Comte Ory and Daphne. Mary Hegarty and Jean Rigby take the roles of two actresses who are staying in the inn, posing as aristocrats. Geoffrey Dolton, Andrew Slater and Mark Wilde perform the gentlemen who vie for Mirandolina’s attentions. Daniel Norman, who makes his Royal Opera debut this month, plays Fabrizio. The internationally acclaimed Martin André conducts.

FIDELIO

John Cox has directed many operas for Garsington Opera, including its recent Mozart successes. Now he directs Beethoven’s Fidelio (1814) – a first both for him and for Garsington. The brilliant conductor Douglas Boyd, Music Director of the Manchester Camerata, made his opera debut last year with Die Zauberflöte for Glyndebourne on Tour. He comes to Garsington for the first time to conduct Fidelio, having interpreted the composer’s work to great acclaim in his recordings of the symphonies. Designer Gary McCann comes from designing the National Theatre’s highly successful production of The Pitmen Painters. In the title role is the British soprano Rebecca von Lipinski, a rising star who made her continental debut last year at the Bregenz Festival. She is joined by Peter Wedd as Florestan. The renowned Russian baritone Sergei Leiferkus plays Don Pizarro, while Rocco is sung by the acclaimed Norwegian bass Frode Olsen. Claire Ormshaw, a winner of the coveted Sir John Christie Prize at Glyndebourne, is Marzelline. Pascal Charbonneau, winner of the 2007 Leonard Ingrams Foundation award, sings Jaquino.

LA CENERENTOLA

David Parry returns to conduct La Cenerentola, the popular work based on the Perrault Cinderella fairytale. The production is directed by Daniel Slater, who was responsible for Garsington Opera’s outstanding production of Don Pasquale. Angela Davies designs. Angelina is sung by the talented young Turkish soprano Ezgi Kutlu, opposite the Greek tenor Antonis Koroneos (Don Ramiro), making his British debut. The two sisters are played by Australian-born Lisa Crosato and by Eliana Pretorian from Romania, the youngest finalist in the 2005 Kathleen Ferrier competition. The Australian singer Joshua Bloom, who recently made his Metropolitan Opera debut, is Alidoro. Dandini is sung by Quirijn de Lang, who sang in Garsington Opera’s Ariadne auf Naxos and most recently as the Count in Scottish Opera’s Secret Marriage.

Fidelio 3, 7, 13, 19, 24, 27 June, 3 July 6.20pm
La Cenerentola 6, 8, 14, 20, 23, 25 June, 1,4 July 6.05pm
Mirandolina 18, 21, 26, 28 June, 2, 5 July 6.30pm

BOX OFFICE: GENERAL PUBLIC BOOKING OPENS 20 April 2009
Telephone 01865 361636 Garsington Opera, Garsington, Oxford OX44 9DH www.garsingtonopera.org

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

GARSINGTON OPERA TO MOVE TO A NEW HOME IN 2011

Garsington Opera was founded in 1989 by Leonard Ingrams and his wife Rosalind, who came to live at Garsington Manor in 1982. Following Leonard Ingrams’ death in 2005, the festival has been under the direction of Anthony Whitworth-Jones. The Opera has built up a remarkable reputation and strong following. 2010 will be the last festival at Garsington Manor and from 2011 Garsington Opera will be operating from a new home.

19 February 2009

PRESS ENQUIRIES:
CLARE ADAMS Tel: 01295 690344 email: ca@clareadamspr.com

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