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Insider's Guide to MADAMA BUTTERFLY

Insider's Guide to Madama Butterfly. Watch Sir Andrew Davis, Renée Fleming, and Anthony Freud discuss Puccini's masterpiece, listen to audio previews, and more!

Patricia Racette and Stefano Secco assume the roles of Butterfly and Pinkerton when Puccini's Madama Butterfly returns to Lyric January 11-26. Experience the love, loss, and ultimate sacrifice of this deeply romantic tragedy.

Plot synopsis.

Read an article about Lyric's new production.

Further reading: "The Obi and the Dagger: Tradition plays a powerful role in the world of Puccini's Cio-Cio-San" by Geraldine Otani Grine and Director's Note.



Music director Sir Andrew Davis, creative consultant Renée Fleming, and general director Anthony Freud discuss Giacomo Puccini's Madama Butterfly:



Madama Butterfly Discovery Series

Puccini’s East-meets-West heartbreaker is one of the most popular operas of all time. Amanda Echalaz (Cio-Cio-San), James Valenti (Pinkerton), and conductor Marco Armiliato discuss how this early 20th century blockbuster engages us on many different levels. Moderated by dramaturg Roger Pines.

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Madama Butterfly Audio Preview

Music director Sir Andrew Davis shares the synopsis and excerpts from Puccini's masterpiece. Recordings used by permission of EMI Classics.

 

Madama Butterfly Commentary

Madama Butterfly 
by Giacomo Puccini

© 2013/14 Lyric Opera Commentaries 

Original sound recordings of musical excerpts used by permission of EMI Classics. All rights reserved. Post-production services provided by Mark Travis, Producer.

 

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Lyric goes to London

July 19 reunited Lyric's mighty triumvirate of general director Anthony Freud, music director Sir Andrew Davis, and creative consultant Renée Fleming at the Royal Opera House for a semi-staged concert performance of Richard Strauss's final opera, Capriccio

FlemingCapriccio

July 19 reunited Lyric's mighty triumvirate of general director Anthony Freud, music director Sir Andrew Davis, and creative consultant Renée Fleming at the Royal Opera House for a semi-staged concert performance of Richard Strauss's final opera, Capriccio. With Anthony in the audience, Sir Andrew conducted Renée as the Countess, one of her signature roles, to great acclaim:

 "Swathed in a glittering Vivienne Westwood gown, she look[ed] ravishing and the soft, poised, top notes in the closing minutes hung in the air like so many silvery moonbeams." Richard Fairman, Financial Times

"Andrew Davis is a master Straussian, conducting with unassertive ease and stroking the requisite velvet out of the strings." Rupert Christiansen, The Telegraph  

Lyric's leaders are working on four continents this summer! Where in the world is...

Anthony Freud? In addition to seeing Capriccio, Anthony attended the Royal Opera House's production of Benjamin Britten's Gloriana. Other highlights of his work travels in Europe included André Tchaikowsky's The Merchant of Venice and Mozart's The Magic Flute at the Bregenz Festival in Austria, Verdi's Attila at Theater an der Wien in Vienna, and Verdi's Il Trovatore and Wagner's Lohengrin at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich. In August and September, Anthony will attend performances at Santa Fe Opera, Glyndebourne, Bayreuth, and Salzburg.

Sir Andrew Davis? Sir Andrew's summer engagements in the UK require him to juggle three scores at the same time! In August, he returns to the Glyndebourne Festival, two hours south of London, where he will conduct Billy Budd for the Benjamin Britten centennial. Sir Andrew will lead the Glyndebourne cast and chorus and the London Philharmonic Orchestra in a live broadcast of Billy Budd for the BBC Proms. BBC Proms fans also await Sir Andrew's rendition of Tippett's A Midsummer Marriage with the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Sir Andrew will spend September with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, where he is music director. His programs in Melbourne include conducting Ryan Opera Center alumni Amber Wagner and René Barbera in Verdi's Requiem.October finds Sir Andrew back home in Chicago for Parsifal.

Renée Fleming? Renée's end-of-July recital in Dublin caps off a terrific season of international touring, including performances in China, Taiwan, Austria, and the United Kingdom, and a stop by the White House to receive the National Medal of Arts from President Obama. Renée's upcoming season once again will take her to all corners of the globeincluding Chicago for her first-ever duo concert with tenor sensation Jonas Kaufmann. 

Pictured above: Soprano Renée Fleming sings the Countess in Richard Strauss's Capriccio at the Royal Opera House in London's Covent Garden. (Photo: Royal Opera House/Catherine Ashmore)

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Divas and Gentlemen

Great divas Anna Netrebko, Albina Shagimuratova, and Lyric creative consultant Renée Fleming join general director Anthony Freud, music director Sir Andrew Davis, and president and CEO Kenneth G. Pigott for a Lyric family photo shoot.

This week, the stars aligned at Lyric when three stratospheric sopranos graced Lyric's stage on three consecutive evenings:

Renée Fleming as Blanche DuBois in André Previn's A Streetcar Named Desire on March 26.

Albina Shagimuratova as Gilda in Giuseppe Verdi's Rigoletto on March 27.

Anna Netrebko as Mimì in Giacomo Puccini's La bohème on March 28. 

              Diva shoot

(l-r:) Anthony Freud, Sir Andrew Davis, Anna Netrebko, Kenneth G. Pigott, and Renée Fleming. Todd Rosenberg Photography.

Anna and Albina graciously joined Lyric creative consultant Renée Fleming, general director Anthony Freud, music director Sir Andrew Davis, and president and CEO Kenneth G. Pigott for a Lyric family photo shoot.  

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Announcing Lyric Opera of Chicago's 2013-14 season!

Anthony Freud, general director of Lyric Opera of Chicago, announced today the repertoire, principal singers, conductors, directors, and designers for Lyric's 2013-14 season. Joining Mr. Freud for today's announcement were Lyric's music director Sir Andrew Davis and Lyric's creative consultant Renée Fleming. 

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Anthony Freud, general director of Lyric Opera of Chicago, announced today the repertoire, principal singers, conductors, directors, and designers for Lyric's 2013-14 season. Joining Mr. Freud for today's announcement were Lyric's music director Sir Andrew Davis and Lyric's creative consultant Renée Fleming.

Lyric’s 2013-14 subscription season will offer 67 total performances of eight different operas:

         Giuseppe Verdi's Otello
 
         Giacomo Puccini's Madama Butterfly
 
         Richard Wagner's Parsifal
 
         Giuseppe Verdi's La Traviata 
 
         Johann Strauss, Jr.'s Die Fledermaus 
 
         Gioachino Rossini's The Barber of Seville 
 
         Antonín Dvořák's Rusalka  
 
         Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's La Clemenza di Tito
 

Ted Chapin, president and executive director of Rodgers and Hammerstein: an Imagem Company, attended the season announcement to celebrate Lyric’s new American Musical Theater Initiative. The initiative will launch after the current opera season with a new production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's Oklahoma!, and it will continue in the spring of 2014, with Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music.

Lyric’s 59th season will embody fully the company’s motto, Long Live Passion. “Passion," said Mr. Freud this afternoon, "is the essence of opera – musically and dramatically. There is no more thrilling, more revelatory, more entertaining art form than opera. At its best, opera delivers tidal-wave impact, overwhelming emotion, visceral excitement. It enables us to understand ourselves, our fellow human beings, and our society."

Enjoy this preview video of Lyric's 2013-14 season! 

                                       

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