Opera Australia has announced it had secured the world’s most in demand tenor, Jonas Kaufmann to perform his first ever fully staged opera in Australia when the Company presents Wagner’s Lohengrin in Melbourne in May 2022.
Rarely performing outside Europe these days, this is the first time the German tenor will perform in a fully staged opera anywhere in the entire South East Asia region, let alone Australia.
“It‘s a tremendous thrill that the greatest tenor alive is coming to Melbourne to perform in his first opera in Australia, and singing, arguably, one of his finest roles,” said Opera Australia’s Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini.
“After all we’ve been through these past two years, it will be a such treat for audiences to see Jonas live on stage, singing the title role in Olivier Py’s fantastic new production of Lohengrin.”
“It’s really terrific that Jonas continues such a positive relationship with Opera Australia,” said Mr Terracini.
This will be Kaufmann’s fourth appearance with Opera Australia, following his performances in an operatic arias recital in 2014, and concert performances of Parsifal in 2017 and Andrea Chénier in 2019.
Kaufmann has performed Lohengrin many times to great acclaim since his role debut at Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich in 2009. “In the title role, Jonas Kaufmann was in a class of his own, totally involved and giving a masterclass of daringly varied, sometimes mannered, vocal technique.” – The Guardian, 2012
Kaufmann will be joined by a cast of powerhouse singers: Emily Magee, Elena Gabouri, Marco Vratogna, Daniel Sumegi and Warwick Fyfe. Opera Australia’s Head of Music Tahu Matheson will conduct Wagner’s romantic opera, featuring a huge chorus.
A co-production with Théâtre Royal de la Monnaie, Py’s acclaimed production is set in the ruins of Berlin during the aftermath of World War II. A romantic tale of mythical proportions plays out on a monumental revolving tiered set depicting a decaying theatre where emblems of German Romanticism gather dust.
Described as a “thoughtful and audacious piece of theatre” by Opera Traveller, Olivier Py’s production of Lohengrin will have its Australian premiere in the State Theatre – Arts Centre Melbourne on 14 May 2022. For more information, visit: www.opera.org.au for details.
Image: Jonas Kaufmann – photo by Gregor Hohenberg | Sony Classical