Oper Falstaff

Budapest Festival Orchestra | Iván Fischer | soloists


Sun, 12.09. | 17.00 | No. 211338

KKL Luzern, Concert Hall

Tickets as from 17.5. | 12

Prices (CHF)

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Summer Festival

10.08.-12.09. 2021




    Oper Falstaff

    Budapest Festival Orchestra | Iván Fischer | soloists

    Ivan Fischer  conductor
    Nicola Alaimo  Falstaff
    Tassis Christoyannis  Ford
    Francesco Demuro  Fenton
    Raúl Jiménez  Dr. Cajus
    Giovanni Battista Parodi  Pistola
    Eva Mei  Mrs. Alice Ford
    Sylvia Schwarz  Nannetta
    Laura Polverelli  Mrs. Meg Page
    Yvonne Naef  Mrs. Quickly
    Giuseppe Verdi (1813–1901)

    Commedia lirica in three acts 
    Staged performance

    Budapest Festival Orchestra

    This year the Budapest Festival Orchestra, which was founded in 1983 by Iván Fischer and Zoltán Kocsis, celebrates its 30th anniversary. Already in its early years numerous renowned conductors and soloists collaborated with the Orchestra, such as Georg Solti, who served as Principal Guest Conductor until his death in the fall of 1997, Sándor Végh, András Schiff, the violinists Yehudi Menuhin, Pinchas Zukerman, and Gidon Kremer, and the pianists Radu Lupu and Richard Goode. The Budapest Festival Orchestra gives some forty concerts each season in its homeland; every September a Mahler Festival takes place in the Budapest Art Palace, and in February the Orchestra then presents a “concert marathon” which focuses on the oeuvre of a particular composer. The Budapest Festival Orchestra, which since 1992 has operated as an independent foundation, is a regular guest at the major festivals and in the great musical metropolises. It has performed at the Salzburg Festival, the Konzerthaus and the Musikverein in Vienna, Carnegie Hall in New York and the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, the BBC Proms in London, the Maggio Musicale in Florence, and the Prague Spring Festival. In August 2013 the Orchestra presented a production of Mozart’s Figaro, which Iván Fischer both staged and conducted, at the Mostly Mozart Festival in New York; in 2011 they performed Don Giovanni there. Besides appearances in such European cities as Turin, Paris, Geneva, Hamburg, Amsterdam, and Munich, the musicians will also tour in the 2013-14 season to give several concerts in China and Taiwan. Through its “Cocoa Concerts” the Budapest Festival Orchestra offers a successful series for children, while its midnight concerts regularly appeal to teens and twentysomethings.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 26 August 1986 in works by Franz Liszt and Franz Schubert.

    July 2013


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    Ivan Fischer

    Iván Fischer, who was born into a family of musicians in 1951 in Budapest, studied piano, violin, cello, and composition in his native city before completing his training as a conductor with Hans Swarowsky and Nikolaus Harnoncourt. After starting his professional career in Britain, he founded the Budapest Festival Orchestra in 1983, which he then led to international renown and of which he is still artistic director. He has also served as general music director of the Opéra de Lyon and principal conductor of the National Symphony Orchestra in Washington, D.C. From 2012 to 2018, he helmed the Berlin Konzerthaus Orchestra, which later appointed him honorary conductor. As a guest conductor, Fischer is primarily associated with the Berlin Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra Amsterdam, the New York Philharmonic, and the Cleveland Orchestra. He has been engaged as an opera conductor by the Vienna Staatsoper, the Royal Opera House in London, the Opéra national de Paris, and numerous other renowned companies. Fischer is also active as a stage director and has presented productions of Mozart operas as well as staged concerts. He founded the Vicenza Opera Festival in 2018. Fischer has moreover been a creative force in developing innovative concert formats, as in his invention of cocoa concerts for toddlers, midnight concerts for students, surprise concerts without a pre-announced program, and a series in which the audience is seated amid the orchestra. As a composer, Fischer has written chamber music, choral works, the music theater piece The Red Heifer, and the children’s opera The Gruffalo. Iván Fischer was awarded the Kossuth Prize, Hungary’s most significant cultural award, in 2006 and, in 2011, the Royal Philharmonic Society Award. He is a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres, an honorary member of the Royal Academy of Music, and an honorary citizen of Budapest.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 26 August 1986 with the Budapest Festival Orchestra in works by Liszt as well as Schubert.

    February 2019

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    Eva Mei

    The soprano Eva Mei, daughter of a musical family from Fabriano in the Italian region of the Marche, studied voice at the Luigi Cherubini Conservatory in Florence. In 1990 she won the Caterina Cavalieri Prize at the International Mozart Competition in Vienna for her performance of Konstanze in Mozart’s Entführung, shortly thereafter making her debut in the same role at the Vienna Staatsoper. She appeared as Norina in Donizetti’s Don Pasquale at the Bavarian Staatsoper in 1992, and in 1993 she made her debuts at La Scala in Milan (as Amenaide in Rossini’s Tancredi), the Royal Opera House in London (as the Queen of the Night in Mozart’s The Magic Flute), and at the Deutsche Staatsoper Berlin (as Violetta Valéry in Verdi’s La traviata). Mei also enjoys a close association with Zurich Opera, where she has performed such roles as Handel’s Alcina, Mozart’s Donna Anna and the Countess in Figaro, Donizetti’s Anna Bolena, Micaëla in Bizet’s Carmen, and Mathilde in Rossini’s Guillaume Tell. In 2012 Mei sang Elisa in a performance of Mozart’s Il re pastore at the Salzburg Festival which was conducted by William Christie; in 2014 she returned to sing in Rossini’s Petite Messe solennelle under the direction of Antonio Pappano. Alice Ford from Verdi’s Falstaff has become a significant part of her repertoire; she will also sing the role in the fall of 2015 at La Scala in Milan. Eva Mei has worked with such conductors as Daniel Barenboim, Colin Davis, Daniele Gatti, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Zubin Mehta, Lorin Maazel, Riccardo Muti, Wolfgang Sawallisch, and Franz Welser-Möst. Along with her work as an opera singer, she performs as a lieder recitalist and serves as a teacher at the Conservatorio Statale di Musica in Turin and as the director of various master classes in Italy and Japan for the training of the next generation of singers.

    August 2015

    Yvonne Naef

    Swiss mezzo-soprano Yvonne Naef was educated in Zurich, Basel, and Mannheim before launching her career as a member of opera companies of St. Gallen and Wiesbaden. She soon made her home on the stage of Zurich Opera, where she has performed the roles of Eboli in Verdi’s Don Carlo, Marfa in Mussorgsky’s Khovanshchina, and Ariane in Dukas’ Ariane et Barbe-Bleue, among others. Yvonne Naef meanwhile regularly appears as a guest artist in many other leading opera houses around the world. At the Hamburg Staatsoper, she has appeared in Boris Godunov and Il trovatore as well as Carmen and had great success as Sieglinde in a new production of Die Walküre in the fall of 2008; at the Vienna Staatsoper she last sang Brangäne in Tristan under the baton of Simon Rattle, while the Salzburg Festival cast her as Didon in Les Troyens. She has also performed the great mezzo roles at La Scala in Milan, the Royal Opera House in London, Paris Opera, the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, and the Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels. Yvonne Naef has earned a special reputation as a Wagner interpreter, singing at the Bayreuth Festival, the Netherlands Opera in Amsterdam, and at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, where she recently performed in several Ring cycles. Her concert repertoire includes a focus on the symphonies and song cycles of Gustav Mahler. Yvonne Naef has collaborated with such conductors as Pierre Boulez, Christoph Eschenbach, James Levine, Kent Nagano, Jonathan Nott, Michael Tilson Thomas, and Franz Welser-Möst. Her discography includes works by Wagner, Mahler, Schoenberg, and Schoeck, but also by Bach and Rossini as well as lieder by Berlioz and Wagner.

    LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on August 15, 1999, in the title role of a concert performance of Schoeck’s Penthesilea, with the Basel Symphony Orchestra under Mario Venzago.

    May 2010