Rossini – Sigismondo
Gioachino Rossini's little-known opera „Sigismondo“ was given at Munich’s Prinzregententheater on October 14, 2018 as a concert performance. This extraordinary opera event is now being released on BR-KLASSIK as a live recording on two CDs.
Opera in two acts
Hyesang Park soprano – Aldimira
Marianna Pizzolato mezzo-soprano – Sigismondo
Rachel Kelly mezzo-soprano – Anagilda
Kenneth Tarver tenor – Ladislao
Gavan Ring baritone – Radoski
Guido Loconsolo bass-baritone – Zenovito
Il Hong bass – Ulderico
Olga Watts, fortepiano
Bavarian Radio Chorus
chorus master: Yuval Weinberg
Munich Radio Orchestra
The Italian composer Gioachino Rossini is best known for his operas. Many of their overtures and arias were catchy tunes at the time and have remained so to this day. Although it is Rossini’s comic operas that are primarily performed today, more than half of his stage works are in fact based on serious themes. One veritable rarity is the stage work Sigismondo, which premiered in 1814 at the famous Teatro La Fenice in Venice but was only ever rarely performed after that. Presumably, the story on which it was based had no appeal for the audience at that time, because musically, the work is hardly less impressive than the Italian Girl in Algiers, written during the previous year, or the Barber of Seville, which followed two years later. The subject of the opera (a maliciously discredited woman is rejected by her husband and lives hidden away until she is found again, rehabilitated and reunited with him) is, however, based on a long tradition. Rossini shows his protagonist, the fictional King Sigismondo, in extreme states of mental distress. Confusion and insanity reveal inner feelings, and it is only delirium that finally brings the truth to light.
This “madness opera” is highly topical, both in its subject matter and its musical language – after all, Rossini is among the top ten most-performed composers of our time.
A concert performance of this little-known and unjustly neglected masterpiece was given at Munich’s Prinzregententheater on October 14, 2018 (during the Rossini year, shortly before the 150th anniversary of the composer’s death). The opera was sung in the original language, by performers highly familiar with Rossini’s music, which seems so easy but is in fact extremely difficult to sing. Mezzo-soprano Marianna Pizzolato sang the trouser role of Sigismondo, with tenor Kenneth Tarver as Ladislao and the soprano Hyesang Park as Aldimira. The Bavarian Radio Chorus also performed, together with the Muncih Radio Orchestra under Keri-Lynn Wilson.
This extraordinary opera event – a festival of singing that received tumultuous applause as well as great critical acclaim – is now being released on BR-KLASSIK as a live recording on two CDs.
2 CDs, BR-KLASSIK 900327
Booklet: in German / in English
Total time: CD 1: 81:17, CD 2: 65:14