Jennifer Rowley's 2015-2016 Season Preview!
The 2015 – 2016 season is here and I am so excited to share with you all of the exciting things that I will be up to this season!
As many of you know who follow me on Facebook and Twitter, I am currently in São Paulo, Brazil to sing Tove in Schoenberg’s gorgeous, and massive, work “Gurre-Lieder” with the São Paulo Symphony Orchestra, OSESP. This is a work that Schoenberg wrote early on in his career, and is highly late-romantic in style. It is full of lush lines and is heavily influenced by Richard Wagner. It is a work for 150 instruments, double chorus, 5 soloists, and a narrator. The poetry is based on poems by Danish writer Jans Peter Jacobsen, and tell the story of a medieval love-tragedy revolving around the Danish national legend of the love of the Danish King Valdemar for his mistress Tove, and her murder by his jealous Queen Helvig. My character Tove has 4 songs in the first part of this beautiful work, the 4th of which is a real “aria” in the Wagnerian style. It is absolutely gorgeous, and culminates with an explosive top B, while the orchestra plays with all of its forces. The cast is led by maestro Isaac Karabtchevsky, and includes tenors Robert Dean Smith as King Waldemar, Anthony Dean Griffey as Klaus, Christine Rice as the voice of Waldtraube, Lester Lynch as Bauer, and Andreas Schmidt as the Narrator. Performances are September 17, 19, and 21st 2015 at the Sala São Paulo.
Next up, I will revisit one of my favorite roles in the Verdi repertoire, Leonora in Il Trovatore with Opéra de Lille in Lille, France. I first sang Leonora last season at the West Australian Opera under the marvelous direction of Joseph Colaneri, and I am excited to see how the role has grown in my voice and how the character develops in the new production that is being done in Lille! This production is created by director Richard Brunel, and will be a co-production with Opera Luxembourg, and the Theatre Caen. I will be travelling around to these theatres with an incredible cast: Maestro Roberto Rizzi Brignoli will lead us in the pit, baritone Igor Golovatenko will sing Count de Luna, who made a big splash this summer at Glynebourne, tenor Sung Kyu Park will sing Manrico, Mairam Sokolova, Azucena, and a friend who I was fortunate enough to sing the Verdi Requiem with several seasons ago, Ryan Speedo Green will sing Ferrando. This production premieres on January 14th, 2015 with performances throughout January and early February in Lille, late February in Luxembourg, and June in Caen.
I will then return to two other favorite roles this spring! I will start with Tosca in March and April, this time, in the United States! I am so excited to head to New Orleans for the first time to sing this amazing role with the New Orleans Opera! I am already planning my foodie adventures! I can’t wait for Café du Monde, August, and to visit some of the local restaurants to experience classic Creole cuisine! Hopefully I will fit into my costumes when all is said and done! I will then head to New York City to cover the role of Desdemona in the new production of Verdi’s Otello at the Metropolitan Opera. Desdemona is very special to me, because it was the first real Verdi role that I dove into in order to cover the old production at the Met several seasons ago. That experience was one I will never forget: I was asked to sing the first music rehearsal actually with international superstars Jose Cura and Thomas Hampson! Cura and I had worked together before; he conducted my Italian debut as Magda in La Rondine in Bologna. I wondered walking into the room if he would remember me – he did! He greeted me a big hug and told me how proud he was of how far I had come, and how happy he was to sing this music with me that day! My very first day at the Met, and I was sitting next to Jose Cura singing the first Act duet! Cloud. Nine. To have the opportunity to cover the new production is really exciting for me. I have seen several photos online as teasers for the premiere coming up in just a few days, and it looks absolutely incredible! The dresses! After I finish up at the Met, I will return to France to sing the final performances of the co-production of Il Trovatore in June in Caen.
It really is looking like an exciting season! There are a few recitals and concerts that I will do as well here and there, and I will keep everyone posted of those on my schedule page and social media outlets! There are other exciting possibilities in the works, and as events unfold, I will be very excited to share them!
Just one more thing before I sign off: if you haven’t seen it already, the amazing production of La Boheme that I did with Den Norske Opera in Oslo, Norway is now on The Opera Platform! This production was created and directed by the incomparable director, Stefan Herheim. It is a chilling and modern representation of Puccini’s great work, and it is so incredibly effective. I get goose-bumps just thinking about it. It is innovative, unique, and completely heart breaking. I am including the link for you below! I hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed performing it. It is a special cast, a special production, and Oslo will always have a very special place in my heart. I hope I will get the chance to return in the future!
La Boheme, The Opera Platform
I look forward to seeing all of my fans around the world this season, and please keep those tweets and posts coming! I love connecting with all of you, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for all of your continued love and support! Here’s to another fabulous season for #TeamLaRowley!