Scottish Opera presents Leos Janácek’s intense drama Kátya Kabanová in a new co-production this March.
It is brought to life with Theater Magdeburg, directed by the renowned British director Stephen Lawless and conducted by Stuart Stratford.
Following the recent success of Czech operas on the Scottish Opera stage with Janácek’s Jenufa (2015) and Dvorák’s Rusalka (2016), Kátya Kabanová opens in Glasgow on March 12 and transfers to Festival Theatre Edinburgh.
Set in a small, industrial community in Russia, Kátya Kabanová is torn between her duties as a wife, and her dreams of a man who truly loves her. Trapped within an oppressive community, neglected by her husband and tormented by her mother-in-law, she is drawn towards escape, to nature and to the ever-present Volga river.
Soprano Laura Wilde makes her Scottish Opera debut in the title role, following her critically acclaimed European debut as Jenufa in 2016 with English National Opera. Ric Furman also makes his Company debut as Boris Grigoyevich alongside Samuel Sakker as Tikhon Kabanov.
Patricia Bardon returns to Scottish Opera for the first time in almost 20 years to sing Kabanicha. Scottish bass Brian Bannatyne-Scott sings Dikoy. Former Jette Parker Young Artist Hanna Hipp (The Marriage of Figaro 2016) joins the cast as Varvara and Trystan Llyr Griffiths (Cosi fan tutte 2015) sings the role of Kudrjash.
Scottish Opera Emerging Artists Alexey Gusev (Rigoletto 2018) and Bethan Langford (Rigoletto 2018) join the cast as Kuligin and Glasha.
Joining Stuart Stratford and Stephen Lawless on the creative team are award-winning set and costume designer Leslie Travers and Tony award-winning Lighting Designer Christopher Akerlind.
Stephen Lawless said: ‘Kátya Kabanová is one of the greatest twentieth century operas. Janácek writes consummate parts for women and the role of Kátya is arguably his best.
‘Our compassion for her predicament draws from music of soaring intensity and heart-stopping lyricism. Scottish Opera has assembled a world class cast that will bring all their expertise to this tale of love, guilt, retribution and transcendence.’
Stuart Stratford added: ‘Janácek is one of the most concentrated of composers. Not a phrase or line is ever unnecessary. He has immense lyricism, which is always fighting for breath with a rigid and often brutal rhythmic underlay. This gives the music a real sense of dynamic tension which suits the subject matter perfectly.’
Those who wish to discover more about how the production was created can attend Kátya Kabanová Unwrapped, one-hour tasters delving further into the show, as well as Pre-show Talks. Audience members with visual impairments can enjoy the full opera experience at audio-described performances, which have a live commentary describing the action on stage without compromising the music.
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