New Productions

DIE DIEBISCHE ELSTER
(The Thieving Magpie)

Gioacchino Rossini
1792 - 1868
Melodrama in two acts
Libretto by Giovanni Gherardini after Théodore Baudouin d’Aubigny and Louis-Charles Caigniez
World premiere: May 31st 1817, La Scala Milan
Sung in Italian with German surtitles
Duration 3 1/4 hours with one interval

About the piece

The execution is called off: a damned magpie was to blame for everything. Or was it d’Aubigny and Caigniez? They turned a story ab ...
The execution is called off: a damned magpie was to blame for everything. Or was it d’Aubigny and Caigniez? They turned a story about a maid into a melodrama: audiences in Paris flocked in droves to the theatre to »shed a few tears about the touching story«. It soon became a box office hit all over Europe. Rossini settled on The Thieving Magpie when looking for suitable subject matter on which to base an opera to open at La Scala in 1817. Rossini’s heorine is Ninetta. Accused of having stolen some silver cutlery, a spurned admirer brings her to trial, where she is sentenced to death. The true thief is unmasked in the nick of time: a magpie.
    Rossini’s music found a balance between the pathos in the book and firework displays of coluratura: he ingeniously wove buffo elements into the story, touching on the tradition of the »mixed genre« of opera semisera. He retained the gloomy mood of the book in the opening scenes, adding amusing ones and a happy end. The score proves that the 25th year old composer’s musical characterisation was far ahead of its time. The people in the funny story are lively; Rossini’s music allowing them to change step quickly between tragedy and comedy – becoming emotional, jolly or scared to death. There is only one who says nothing, but only because its squawks were not set to music.

Synopsis

Fabrizio Vingradito and his wife Lucia are preparing to welcome home their son Giannetto from war. Fabrizio wants him to marry th ...
Fabrizio Vingradito and his wife Lucia are preparing to welcome home their son Giannetto from war. Fabrizio wants him to marry their maid Ninetta. Lucia is against this plan. She can't find a silver fork, and blames the maid. Giannetto is welcomed home. Ninetta carefully checks a case of silver cutlery. A crestfallen soldier speaks to her. She realises that he is her father, Fernando Villabella. He was sentenced to death after a fight with his superiors and is now on the run. The mayor tries to molest Ninetta. She spurns him, tells her father to pretend to be asleep, and passes him off as a tramp. The scribe appears with a „wanted“ poster. The mayor tries to read it. Ferando gives Ninetta two pieces of silver cutlery, asking her to sell them and hide the money in a tree. Ninetta, reading the poster out loud, changes the description of the wanted man. Ninetta sells her father's silver but before she can hide the money Lucia discovers that another piece of cutlery is missing. The mayor orders an investigation. When money falls out of Ninetta's pocket pocket and Isacco boasts that he bought a fork and spoon from her, the mayor has her arrested. The mayor offers to set her free if she will give herself to him. Ninetta refuses. Ninetta is found guilty. Fernando is recognised and arrested. Pippo finds the stolen cutlery where the magpie had hidden it just before Ninetta's execution. Fernando is granted amnesty. Giannetto and Ninetta's wedding can take place.
Performances

Sunday 30.03.2014 18:00 h

Further performances

Opera House
Subscription: series 01

Pre-booking and Pricing

Cast

Conductor
Henrik Nánási
Director
David Alden
Set Designer
Charles Edwards
Costume Designer
Jon Morrell
Lighting Designer
Olaf Winter
Choreographer
Maxine Braham
Dramaturge
Zsolt Horpácsy
Chorus Master
Matthias Köhler

Farbrizio Vingradito
Federico Sacchi
Lucia, seine Frau
Katarina Leoson
Giannetto, sein Sohn
Francisco Brito
Ninetta, Dienstmädchen
Sophie Bevan
Fernando Villabella, ihr Vater
Jonathan Lemalu
Gottardo, Bürgermeister
Kihwan Sim
Pippo, Bauernbursche
Alexandra Kadurina
Isacco, Händler
Nicky Spence
Antonio, Kerkermeister
Michael McCown
Giorgio, Diener des Bürgermeisters
Iurii Samoilov *
Ernesto
Thomas Charrois
Amtsrichter
Carlos Krause

Chorus and Orchestra of Oper Frankfurt


* Member of the Opera Studio

 
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