Tuesday 3 July 2018
18 September 2018 – 8 July 2019
Classical Opera and The Mozartists today announce their 18/19 season with Artistic Director Ian Page. The season opens at Wigmore Hall with a performance of Mozart’s one-act singspiel Bastien und Bastienne, coinciding with the release of their new recording of the work on Signum Classics (18 Sept, album released 14 Sept). Page brings together a cast comprising Ellie Laugharne (soprano), Alessandro Fisher (tenor) and Darren Jeffery (bass-baritone) for the opening concert, which also includes Haydn’s Symphony No. 49 (‘La Passione’) and a selection of arias from Teutsche Comoedie Arien (anon.) For over two centuries Mozart’s autograph manuscript of Bastien und Bastienne was lost, and it has only recently been possible to reconstruct the original text as it was performed at the work’s 1768 première. This performance therefore marks the first performance since its première of the opera in its original version. The album is the seventh release in Classical Opera’s ongoing complete cycle of Mozart Operas recording project on Signum Classics.
For The Mozartists’ annual MOZART 250 musical exploration, ‘1769: A Year in Music’, Page is joined by Swiss-Belgian soprano Chiara Skerath and South African baritone Jacques Imbrailo for the survey of the musical scene across Europe in 1769, the year Mozart becomes a teenager. The concert, this year at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, includes music by Mozart, Arne, Paisiello, Leopold Mozart, Grétry, Gluck and Haydn (29 Jan).
Chiara Skerath joins Page once again in March to perform the UK première of Hasse’s opera Piramo e Tisbe alongside tenor Gwilym Bowen, following her performance of an aria from the opera in the 17/18 season (28 March). First performed in Vienna in the autumn of 1768, Hasse considered this the finest of his sixty-two operas, and it is by far the most experimental and forward-looking of his compositions, incorporating and developing many of Gluck’s operatic reforms.
Following their successful Southbank Centre debut last month with La finta semplice, The Mozartists return to the Queen Elizabeth Hall in May 2019 to present a pair of one-act operas by Gluck, Bauci e Filemone and Orfeo (the UK première of the composer’s 1769 reworking of the score for soprano Orfeo). Both operas are based on stories featured in Ovid’s Metamorphoses, and originally formed part of Le feste d’Apollo, a trio of works composed 250 years ago to celebrate the wedding in Parma of Ferdinand, Duke of Parma and grandson of Louis XV, to Maria Armalia, Archduchess of Austria and daughter of the Habsburg Empress Maria Theresa. The cast includes Ana Maria Labin (Orfeo), Susanna Hurrell (Euridice) and Rebecca Bottone (Amore/Bauci), and the operas are directed by Nick Winston (29 & 31 May).
The Mozartists conclude their 2018/19 season with a return to Wigmore Hall for a musical exploration of Mozart’s travels across Europe, a concert which will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 (8 July). The programme features a sequence of symphonies, concertos and arias composed by Mozart in London, The Hague, Paris, Munich, Vienna, Prague and Rome. Page brings together Associate Artist Louise Alder to perform with principals of the ensemble Katy Bircher (flute), Oliver Wass (harp) and Gavin Edwards (horn).
Ian Page’s commitment to identifying, developing and championing exceptional young talent remains a central ingredient of the 2018/19 Season, and the company also continues its important outreach work. This year they launch the fifth year of their MOZART 250 Schools’ Project, through which primary school children hear live performances of Mozart’s music, learn about his life and historical context, and compose their own operas, coming together to share their performances.
Ian Page, founder, conductor and Artistic Director of Classical Opera and The Mozartists, says:
“As with 1766, 1769 was an uncharacteristically sparse year for Mozart as a composer, but with MOZART 250 this again gives us an opportunity to look a little wider at what was happening elsewhere in the musical world. I’m delighted that our 2018/19 season includes UK premières of Hasse’s fascinating Piramo e Tisbe and Gluck’s 1769 revision of his seminal Orfeo ed Euridice, as well as the first performance since its première of the original version of Mozart’s Bastien und Bastienne, to coincide with our new recording. We also have a hugely exciting roster of soloists appearing with us, and as we expand our concert repertoire I look forward to our first performances of two of Mozart’s most popular concertos at the end of the season.”