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66

Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia

Jakub Hrůša

Concerto inaugurale - Annullato

Una piccola volpe astuta

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Friday
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Duration 80 minutes
Music

Synopsis

It is a fascinating program for the opening concert of the 66th Edition of Festival dei Due Mondi, given by the Accademia di Santa Cecilia, in its third year in residence to Spoleto, under the leadership of the talented Czech conductor Jakub Hrůša, recently appointed music director of London's Royal Opera House succeeding Antonio Pappano.

At the center is the music of Leoš Janáček, of whom Hrůša, born to Brno, is a compatriot and among the most highly regarded performers--great success was recently his conducting ofopera KáťaKabanová at the Salzburg Festival. Janáček's music is probably among the most expressive to be found in the 20th century, and Hrůša has created a Suite with sung scenes from the originalopera of the famous Little Cunning Fox, with which this program opens. Inspired to a children's novel to episodes, the story of the fox Bystrouska (cunning) is a unique example of musical theater of its kind, and the vicissitudes of the little animal are a first opportunity to reflect on the relationship between man and nature that underlies to the entire Festival program.

Of great appeal is the folk dimension: to straddling the nineteenth and twentieth centuries Janáček made research on Moravian songs and dances one of the hallmarks of his music and ethnomusicological research. In the Dances of Lachi, an eastern region of the same name in Czech-Slovakia, we find folk melodies and traditions with which he reproduces in a personal key the joyful flair of a folkloric performance. The program closes with Sinfonietta, perhaps his best-known work, is a tribute to his city, whose streets and symbolic places he traces.

Credits

Program

Orchestra of the Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia

director Jakub Hrůša

soprano Louise Alder

Bystrouška, female fox

soprano Corinne Winters

Lišák, male fox

baritone Roman Hoza

Revírník, gamekeeper

music

Leoš Janáček

Příhody Lišky Bystroušky 

The cunning little fox

Suite

version by Jakub Hrůša

with scenes from the originalopera

Dances of Lachi

No. 3 Dymák Dance of the Anvil

No. 6 Pilky Saw Dance

No. 5 Čeladenský Celadna‍ village dance.

Sinfonietta

co-production Spoleto Festival dei Due Mondi, Foundation Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia

CANCELLATION OF INAUGURAL CONCERT

to Due to bad weather, Festival dei Due Mondi canceled last night's Opening Concert at Piazza Duomo. The organization and performers hoped to the last that they could get the concert started partly because of updates from the weather forecast that seemed to promise a passing disturbance. We thank all the audience, solo singers, conductor and orchestra for the patient wait. The arrival of the storm sealed the surrender with the safety shutdown of all sound and lighting systems. The staff proceeded to to notify to all the audience also personally of the cancellation of the concert. The Festival, however, continues and from this morning all scheduled events are underway, pending tonight's debut ofopera Pelléas et Mélisande at the Teatro Nuovo Gian Carlo Menotti. Audiences are eligible for ticket refunds according to the procedures outlined below.

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT HOW TO BE REIMBURSED

Hall Program

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Text by Sandro Cappelletto

"The Cunning Fox" is theAlice in Wonderland of a Moravian socialist humanitarian; but it is a fairy tale for adults. Of course, the fairy tale has a bitter undertone for Latino viewers, unable to love Life without giving it external justifications. Yet Janáček's tale finds its full meaning precisely in the inexplicable symbol of the Fox, and in this pagan acceptance of existence insofar as it can be "beautiful and wild," worthy of love even when it seems to reject love." Thus, relentlessly wise, Eugenio Montale recounted, in 1958, the La Scala staging of The Cunning Fox in the historic edition directed by Walter Felsenstein and produced by the Komische Oper in Berlin.

Příhody lišky Bystroušky, The Adventures of the Fox Bystrouska, better known as The Crafty Little Fox, debuted in 1924 to Brno, the main city of Moravia in the Czech Republic. The story is based from a short story by Rudolf Tesnohlídek and from a series of drawings by Stanislav Lolek, inspired to by rural landscapes and woodland animals, which appeared to episodes in the Prague daily Lidové noviny. Tesnohlídek is an anarcho-pessimistic writer, denouncing the conventions and exclusions imposed by social codes. His fox however Bystry (cunning) tries to be, will not be cunning enough to escape the cruelty of men. The animal who does not agree to be domesticated, is caught, escapes and finally succumbs, has its double in the character of Térynka, the "beautiful and wild" girl courted by the village notables, who chooses instead a vagabond and border-line salesman over the manners of bourgeois life.  

"Spring blooms around and life, alone triumphant, begins its cycle again," commented Montale again, who in those same years never missed his appointment with Spoleto, offering reports that allowed readers of his newspaper, the Corriere di Informazione, to share in the fabulous atmosphere of the first editions of the Festival.

to that 1958 performance at La Scala also attended by Massimo Mila: "Only the Italians' well-known indifference to aspects of nature, when not crystallized in panoramic viewpoints from picture postcard, could delay the success of this pure masterpiece."

Tonight we will hear a symphonic suite from 'opera laid out by conductor Jakub Hrůša, a Moravian like Janáček, and featuring three singers. A century has passed since the debut of The Cunning Fox, a century during which the anthropocene, then inordinately proud of itself, now finds itself in the deepest crisis of meaning and planning. It will thus give us pause to ponder the mysterious pantheism that characterizes Janáček's music and that we can only find in Maurice Ravel's contemporary L'Enfant et les sortilèges, where to prevail are the magical gaze of childhood. Janáček's writing is seductive in interweaving rhythmically pressing moments to ample pages of trepid calm, in privileging - as befits a fairy tale - the unexpected scraps that accentuate the narrative skew, in anticipation of what may happen. Writing that eludes any rigid definition, as is also the case with the line of the song, far from the expressionist twists, the lyrical emptiness, the always complex balance between word and voice of the Sprechgesang. Imagine being drawn to the secret beauty of a forest and getting lost, listening to its sounds, its murmurs, giving voice to the allegories that observing nature arouses in us. Simultaneously feeling, like the fox, the risky desire to get out from that thicket to meet the civilization of men, putting to free wandering at risk. The immediate recognizability of the orchestral themes (the quick, elusive, zigzagging pace of the fox, which in 'opera has a soprano voice), the variety of the orchestration, the levity of the writing transform this suite into the gateway, as Montale suggests, into a Wonderland, to provided we too become - but who will be able to? - lots and lots of Alice.

The love for the folklore of one's homeland, which is not the typical feature of The Cunning Fox and cannot become the prevailing critical horizon toward Janáček's music, is most clearly manifested in the Lachi Dances (1889-1890). Six provide the original score, three of which we will hear tonight: Dymák (Dance of the Anvil), Čeladenský (Dance of the Village of Celadna), Pilky (Dance of the Saw). The rediscovery of the ethnographic musical heritage that thrilled European composers in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries is not only, in the eyes of the music historian, the outcome of a nostalgic operation in a patriotic key. In the modes of folklore, far removed from the rules of tonal harmony and rooted in a historically indefinite past, musicians sought not only the roots of their national identity, but an uncorrupted lifeblood, almost a degree zero of creativity. So it is with Janáček, too, in the effervescence of Dymák, as we are drawn into an increasingly stringent dance to round, in the pressing two-step rhythm of Čeladenský, in the happy pacing of the beginning of Pilky, the most articulate episode, which soon becomes an evocation of a dancing community and briefly returns to the cadenced initial pace only to rush toward the finale. The composer quotes and reinvents, offers the sonorities and colors of an entire orchestra to music passed down orally from generation to generation, and creates the fertile relationship of recreation that has always characterized the now highly compromised relations between popular culture, often anonymous, and opera auteur art.

Like The Crafty Little Fox, Sinfonietta (1926) also belongs to Janáček's extreme creative period. The original title is Vojenská synfonietta, Military Sinfonietta. The work is first dedicated to the Czechoslovak armed forces, and the composer envisions a division into five movements: Fanfare, The Castle, The Queen's Cloister, The Street, The Town Hall. By the time the to edition is printed, the military adjective disappears, as do the titles of the different sections. The original inspiration remains recognizable, due to the presence in the orchestra of 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 4 trombones and bass tuba - who are joined in the first movement by another 13 brass instruments: 9 trumpets, 2 tenor tubas, 2 bass trumpets - and the martial trend that also reappears in the final section. "As if by a miracle, the bright ray of freedom rose to shining on the whole city - the rebirth of October 28, 1918, the blasts of the victorious trumpets, the peace of the Queen's Cloister, the shadows of the night, the breath of the verdant hills and the vision of the greatness of the city, of my Brno: all this contributed to give life to the Sinfonietta." October 28, 1918 is the date celebrating the birth of the Czechoslovak Republic, at the end of World War I and after the dissolution of the Habsburg Empire. With these words Janáček offers us the best key to to a'opera destined to to become his most beloved orchestral title. As with The Cunning Fox, it is now necessary to imagine: the city of Brno, his city, the long years of war, the independence and peace finally achieved, the possibility of releasing the sweetnesses of imagination. And who can prevent us from thinking that the final pages of the score evoke the parade of troops as they march to the barracks to lay down their weapons, in bloodless, festive jubilation, dreaming of happiness.

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Dates & Tickets

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Fri
23
Jun
2023
at
20:30
Piazza Duomo
at
Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
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Piazza Duomo
Event Times
June 28
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
15:15
16:30
17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
June 29
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
15:15
16:30
17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
June 30
11:00
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13:00
14:15
15:15
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17:30
18:30
19:45
01 July
10:00
11:00
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13:15
14:15
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17:45
20:30
21:30
02 July
10:00
11:00
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13:15
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17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
21:45
04 July
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
15:15
16:30
17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
05 July
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
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17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
06 July
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
15:15
16:30
17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
07 July
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
15:15
16:30
17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
08 July
10:00
11:00
12:00
13:00
14:15
15:15
16:30
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18:30
20:45
21:45
09 July
10:00
11:00
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17:30
18:30
19:45
20:45
21:45

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Biographies

Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia

The Orchestra dell'Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia was the first in Italy to to devote itself exclusively to the symphonic repertoire, promoting premieres of 20th-century masterpieces. Since 1908 to today it has collaborated with the greatest musicians of the century: it has been conducted by from Mahler, Debussy, Strauss, Stravinsky, Toscanini, Furtwängler, De Sabata, Karajan, Abbado and Kirill Petrenko, among others. Its permanent conductors have been Molinari, Ferrara, Previtali, Markevitch, Schippers, Sinopoli, Gatti, Chunge, and Sir Antonio Pappano (2005-2023), who will be succeeded in October 2024 as the new Music Director by Englishman Daniel Harding. From 1983 to 1990 Leonard Bernstein was its Honorary President. The Orchestra and Chorus have been guests at major festivals: the London Proms, Lucerne Festivals, White Nights in St. Petersburg, Salzburg, and the most prestigious from concert halls, including the Philharmonie in Berlin, Musikverein in Vienna, Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Royal Albert Hall in London, Salle Pleyel in Paris, Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Carnegie Hall in New York. His intense recording activity in recent years has been crowned from several international awards and prizes. Recent recordings conducted from Antonio Pappano include Verdi's Otello with Jonas Kaufmann, Cinema with Alexandre Tharaud on piano, Insieme-Opera Duets with Jonas Kaufmann and Ludovic Tézier, Rossini's Messa di Gloria recently awarded at the International Classical Music Awards in the "Choral Music" section, and Puccini's Turandot with Sondra Radvanovsky and Jonas Kaufmann (March 2023, Warner Classics).

Jakub Hrůša

Born in the Czech Republic, Jakub Hrůša is Principal Conductor of the Bamberg Symphoniker, Principal Guest Conductor of the Orchestra ofAccademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia, Permanent Guest Conductor of the Czech Philharmonic, and has been Principal Guest Conductor of the Philharmonia Orchestra in London. From 2025 he will be the new Music Director of the Royal Opera House-Covent Garden in London. Hrůša regularly collaborates with the world's leading orchestras: the Vienna and Berlin Philharmonic, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Orchestre de Paris, Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, New York Philharmonic, and Chicago Symphony. As conductor ofopera he has been a guest conductor at the Glyndebourne Festival, London's Covent Garden, Vienna's Staatsoper, Zurich's Opernhaus and Opéra National de Paris. He has collaborated with soloists and singers such as Leif Ove Andsnes, Lisa Batiashvili, Yefim Bronfman, Christian Gerhaher, Kirill Gerstein, Hilary Hahn, Barbara Hannigan, Janine Jansen, Leonidas Kavakos, Lang Lang, Igor Levit, Jan Lisiecki, Viktoria Mullova, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Daniil Trifonov, Mitsuko Uchida, and Yuja Wang. His most recent record releases include Suk's Asrael Symph ony with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, Brahms Symphonies Nos. 3 and 4 and, just released, Hans Rott's Symphony No. 1 with the Bamberger Symphoniker. Jakub Hrůša is president of the International Martinů Circle and the Dvorak Society and was the first recipient of the Sir Charles Mackerras Prize.

Louise Alder

She studies at the Royal College of Music International Opera School where she is the first Kiri Te Kanawa Scholar. Her engagements in the 2022/23 season include Fiordiligi in a new production of Così fan tutte for the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich and a return to the Glyndebourne Festival as Anne Trulove in The Rake's Progress. In concert she sings Mahler's Symphony No. 2 with the London Symphony Orchestra/Sir Simon Rattle and Symphony No. 4 with the Bayerisches Statsorchester/Vladimir Jurowski, Janáček's The Cunning Viper withAccademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia/Jakub Hrůša and Mozart's Exsultate, jubilate with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/Kirill Petrenko. Her previous successes include Susanna for the Wiener Staatsoper, Bayerische Staatsoper Munich and Opernhaus Zürich; Zerlina in Don Giovanni for the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden and Teatro Real in Madrid; Gretel in Hänsel und Gretel and Marzelline in Fidelio for the Bayerische Staatsoper Munich; Sophie in Der Rosenkavalier for the Wiener Staatsoper and the Glyndebourne Festival; and Cleopatra in Giulio Cesare for the Theater an der Wien and Oper Frankfurt. Her recital appearances include the BBC Proms, Musikverein Graz and Oper Frankfurt with Gary Matthewman, Wigmore Hall with Joseph Middleton and James Baillieu, Schubertiade Schwarzenberg with Daniel Heide, and the Oxford Lieder Festival and Fundación Privada Victoria de los Ángeles to Barcelona with Sholto Kynoch.

Corinne Winters

An American soprano, she graduated from the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia. She receives accolades from prestigious U.S. institutions and makes a name for herself in international competitions. She began her career in her home country and then made her debut in Europe. Particularly acclaimed as Violetta in La traviata, she has performed this role at the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, English National Opera, Theater Basel, Opera Australia, to San Diego, Seattle, Wolf Trap, Detroit, Ottawa and Hong Kong. Her past engagements include Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte (ROH, Santa Cecilia to Rome), Mélisande in Pelléas et Mélisande (Zurich, Saint Louis), Mimì in La bohème (ENO, Washington, Arizona Opera), Juliette in Roméo et Juliette (Arizona Opera), Alice in Falstaff (Birmingham Symphony Orchestra), Soong Ching-ling in the American premiere of Dr. Sun Yat-sen (Santa Fe); debuts as protagonist in Kát'to Kabanová (Seattle), Desdemona inOthello and Rachel in La Juive (Antwerp), Tat'jana in Evgenij Onegin (Arizona Opera; Detroit), Magda in La rondine (St. Louis), Liù in Turandot with Orchestra Bolívar conducted from Dudamel, Léïla in Les pêcheurs de perles (Santa Fe Festival), Halka in theopera of the same name (Theater an der Wien), Les nuits d'été with the Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra, Requiem on tour in Europe with Monteverdi Choir and Orchestras conducted from Gardiner. Recent and upcoming engagements: acclaimed debut as Kat'á Kabanová at the Salzburg Festival, opera also performed to Stuttgart, Genève and Lyon, debut as Cio-Cio-San in Madama Butterfly at the Circus Maximus withOpera Rome and to Frankfurt; returning to London as Rusalka, to the United States with Evgenij Onegin and Beethoven's 9th Symphony, again to Rome with Kat'á Kabanová and for the inaugural Dialogues des Carmélites, The Triptych to Brussels, Jenůfa to Geneva and Valencia.

Roman Hoza

Born in 1990 to Zlin, Czech Republic, in addition to studies at the Janacek Academy in Brno and the Hochschule für Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna, he attended master classes with C. Ludwig, L. Watson, H. Deutsch, J. P. Fouchécourt, T. Krause, to. Plachetka or D. Syrus, just to name a few. In 2014 he participated in the Salzburger Festspiele Young Singers Project as Dandini in Cinderella. In the same year he takes part in theopera studio ofOpera National de Lyon. From 2015 to 2016 he is a member of theopera studio of the Deutsche Oper am Rhein in Düsseldorf/Duisburg where he appears on stage in many repertory roles such as Morales, Silvano, Marullo and others. In 2020 Hoza joined to the ensemble of the Deutsche Oper am Rhein and performed roles such as Papageno(Die Zauberflöte), Dandini(La Cenerentola) or Belcore(Elisir d'amore). Roman Hoza is also a soloist atOpera Janacek in Brno, where he performs the roles of Don Giovanni, Guglielmo(Cosí fan tutte), Marbuel(Dvorak: Kate and the Devil), Rimbaud(Le Comte Ory), Belcore(Elisir d'amore) or Jaufré Rudel(Saariaho: L'Amour de loin). He is a regular guest of the National Theater in Prague (Mozart's Don Giovanni and Figaro, Donizetti's Mamma Agata or Rossini's Dandini) and the National Theater in Ostrava in the title role of Hamlet by to. Thomas. His repertoire includes, among others, the title role in Eugen Onegin, bass/baritone parts in Carmina Burana, The Messiah, Johannespassion, Paulus, Die Schöpfung, Dvorak's Te Deum and many others. Hoza also devotes himself to from chamber music (song cycles by Dvorak, Janacek, Mahler, Martinu, Ravel, Schubert, Schumann among others) and baroque music collaborating with leading baroque ensembles in the Czech Republic (including Collegium 1704, Musica Florea, Ensemble Inégal).

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