- Otello will be broadcast live, across the globe and free through the online platform of Teatro Real: Palco Digital. You can also follow the live transmission on RTVE.es (co-producer of the audiovisual production), The Opera Platform (Opera Europa), Shakespeare Lives(British Council) and ARTE Concert (ARTE TV).
- Almost 100 cities in Spain will offer the live stream of Otello, on free outdoor screens installed in emblematic venues of Granada, Murcia, Sevilla, Zaragoza, Valladolid, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria and Chinchón, along with important museums, cultural institutions and auditoriums throughout all of Spain.
- You can follow the conversation on social media with the hashtag #OtelloEnDirectoTR
Tomorrow, 24 September, at 8pm, the Teatro Real will broadcast Otello by Giuseppe Verdi (1813-1901), a Teatro Real co-production with English National Opera -were it premiered with great success in September 2014- and the Royal Swedish Opera, which presented the opera in March 2015.
Otello was born thanks to the skill and perseverance of the great publisher Giulio Ricordi (1840-1912), who over several years persuaded a retired Verdi to pick up his operatic production, which he hadabandoned after the premiere of Aida in El Cairo in 1871.
At the time, Giuseppe Verdi was a mature and renowned composer with a long-standing and successful career; he had a great financial situation and was very popular and beloved for his active involvement in the unstable Italian life. Verdi decided to stop creating opera, standing aside for a new generation of composers that tried to renew the ideals of Italian opera, under the powerful influence of Wagner and his works.
However, the stimulating strength of William Shakespeare’s (1564-1616) plays awakened Verdi from his slumber and, with the work of the outstanding librettos of fellow composer and poet Arrigo Boito (1842-1918), he composed, well into his 70s, his last two and greatest operas: Otello and Falstaff. With the former, he began the deepest renewal of his musical language, with a profound synthesis of the elements that formed Italian opera at that time, marking the end of a cycle of nearly two centuries. With the latter, he took the comic opera to a new level of refinement and delicacy, signing off with an exquisite and nostalgic praise to youth and love.
Driven by the accuracy of Boito’s libretto, which simplifies the Shakespearean plot by focusing on the complexity of the characters and their relationships, Verdi used all his creative resources to serve the dramaturgy. He forged a seamless score, in which arias, duets, recitatives and ariosos come together in a continuum where the tension never drops, even in the most intimate moments.
A great orchestration outlines the characters and illuminates the evolution of the drama, with an unparalleled density and consistency: the singing flows like a declamation, interweaving fine melodies with moments of huge dramatic strength and lyrical atmospheres.
For such a dramaturgically powerful staging, American director David Alden has chosen to emphasize the internal conflict of Otello, whose warlike character hides an enormous insecurity, making him vulnerable to the evil deeds of Iago. A dark and ruined Mediterranean city created by stage designer Jon Morrellaccentuates the terrifying atmosphere of the Shakespearean drama that Verdi magnified and universalized.
Renato Palumbo, who has previously conducted Les Huguenots, Tosca and La traviata at the Teatro Real, now returns with another title by Verdi, with American tenor Gregory Kunde in the title role. One of the most celebrated interpreters of the demanding role of Otello, Kunde also opened last season with his acclaimed Roberto Devereux, and will return in Norma next October and November. Albanian sopranoErmonela Jaho, who triumphed as Violetta in La traviata in 2014, will portray the frightful character of Desdemona. Baritone George Petean completes the main trio in the role of the evil and sadist Iago. Petean recently sang in the last season with the opera I puritani.
The choir Pequeños Cantores de la Comunidad de Madrid, directed by Ana González, and the Coro Titular del Teatro Real, under the direction of its chief conductor, Andrés Maspero will perform, once again, next to the Orquesta Titular del Teatro Real, conducted by Renato Palumbo.
BROADCASTS OF OTELLO
Among the many activities intended to draw opera closer to the public, one of the key objectives of theBicentenary of Teatro Real, a main priority is the broadcast of the performances with the help of new technologies.
This initiative follows the success of our previous broadcast, I puritani, on 14 July, which reached a total of 7.3 million people through many different channels such as websites, social media, museums, auditoriums and open spaces throughout Spain and Latin America. The Teatro Real offers the possibility of enjoyingOtello in a live or recorded broadcast, free of charge, worldwide, with an active participation of several cultural institutions and municipalities.
In this occasion, along with the live broadcast to museums, cultural centers, town halls andauditoriums throughout Spain, outdoor screens will be installed out of Madrid, in important venues of Granada, Murcia, Sevilla and Valladolid, taking opera out of its traditional space and into the immediacy of the streets.
In Latin America the broadcast will be offered on 30 September in emblematic venues of Mexico andColombia.
There will also be a free, live, worldwide broadcast in Palco Digital (the Teatro Real’s online opera platform) and other national and international websites. Reaching an increasingly diversified audience.
RTVE, co-producer of the audiovisual production, will offer the opera on its website RTVE.es. The Opera Platform, an online platform created by OPERA EUROPA, which began operating with the international broadcasting of our own La traviata, in 2014, will stream the first and last operas of the our 2016/17 season: Otello and Madama Butterfly. ARTE Concert, ARTE channel, and Shakespeare Lives, of British Council, will also join the broadcast of Otello.
COLLABORATION WITH BRITISH COUNCIL
In celebration of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death and the Bicentenary of Teatro Real, the new production of Otello, linking the names of Verdi and Shakespeare, will be broadcast live to 140 countries through Shakespeare Lives, the worldwide network of British Council websites and in theatres like the Gdańsk Shakespeare Theatre (Poland) or the Marin Sorescu National Theatre of Craiova, Romania.
The audiences will also enjoy during the intermission a selection of short films produced by renowned British directors inspired by Shakespeare's classics, and a series of interviews with the artists of Otello.It can all be will be followed on social media with the hashtag #ShakespeareLives, offering a multifaceted look of this masterpiece from different areas of creation.
This unique collaboration between the British Council and Teatro Real will continue in the future with a series of projects covering the digital world, education and the audiovisual sector.