Lucio Silla


Mozart Lucio Silla opera to libretto by Giovanni de Gamerra. Directed 2017 by Claus Guth at the Teatro Real. Stars Kurt Streit (Lucio Silla), Patricia Petibon (Giunia), Silvia Tro Santafé (Cecilio), Inga Kalna (Lucio Cinna), María José Moreno (Celia), and Kenneth Tarver (Aufidio). Ivor Bolton conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro Real de Madrid (Chorus Master Andrés Máspero). Assistant stage direction by Tine Buyse; set and costume design by Christian Schmidt; original lighting design by Manfred Voss; revival lighting design by Jürgen Hoffman; dramaturgy by Ronny Dietrich. Directed for TV by Jérémie Cuvillier; produced by Xavier Dubois and Natalia Camacho. Released 2018, disc has 5.1 dts-HD Master Audio sound. Grade: NA

We recently got a traditional version of this rare opera from Teatro alla Scala, and now we have this contemporary version from Madrid. Patricia Petibon has a good nose for sniffing out interesting productions. What are the chances that you would ever get to see this work live? Probably nil.

So we are really lucky now to have two versions of this. And Hugo Shirley has reviewed both! In the August 2018 Gramophone (page 92), Shirley tips his hat musically to the Teatro alla Scala version, but he allows that this Teatro Real show directed by Claus Guth “offers something more serious and austere, and ultimately more thought-provoking.” And all of this discussion over an opera written by a composer who was 18 years old!

David Baker, writing in the December 2018 Opera News (pages 57-58), praises Bolton’s conducting and especially Petibone, “one of those rare, indispensable figures who epitomize sung drama” and who, ”with animated physicality and fiery gaze provides focus in a production that might otherwise seemed too busy.”

Here is a clip from the Teatro Real: